For the past decade, the human role has often been neglected in discussions of computational design and automation. However, rapid developments in AI & AR are opening the possibilities for a closer relationship between humans, computers, and machines, requiring multiple fields and industries to rethink the role of humans in the production chain. It raises an interesting question about how these developments will impact the architectural design and construction industries, as well as how it will shape the physical environment of our future in a broader sense. In this article, several research projects are presented as case studies to discuss the issue and pose further questions on how architects should respond.
Following the internet age, it has been suggested that we are entering a new era of the ‘Augmented Age’ (King 2016). Physicist Michio Kaku imagines the future in which architects rely heavily on
– Augmented Reality technologies (Kaku 2015). Although Augmented reality is not a new concept, the technology has only broken into the mainstream with development of consumer Augmented Reality devices (Coppens 2017) in the last five years. This has rapidly opened up possibilities in almost every aspect of our daily lives and is expected to greatly impact every field in the near future, including design and fabrication (Hahm et al. 2019). The timing is right to think about the impact of Mixed Reality (MR)/Augmented Reality (AR) technologies on the building industry.