Reply To: 32-floor building planned for Dublin

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Yeah, there are many things in this discussion alright – but I would like to have a good Property Economist present at least, before I started to really delve in there – they tend to bring an interesting slant on it all.

There are indeed a number of parallels you can draw with the cost>quality>economics debate in architecture. I have noticed lecturing staff in college frequently use the analogy of aircraft design, when talking about detailing in Architecture.

Here are some of my own ramblings on the subject. I am very familiar with the notion of economics, features, quality etc as it pertains to smaller consumer objects like computers. But analogy can also be drawn with much bigger pieces of technology like Concorde for instance.

Then you have got people like Linus Torvalds – the creator of the Linux operating system – one which appears to be much more versatile than anything MicroSoft have offered – you can find Linux on Palm Pilots or on supercomputers. Microsoft seems to be restricted to Personal Computers.

Software is a huge industry in itself. So when I look at Architecture from the point of view of value for money – you really have to study carefully the techniques employed by other professionals to cost benchmark, and ‘to sell’ quality in other products.

I mean, I know you aren’t talking about longeivity so much in a computer – but it does have some elements like stability, redundancy etc – so that when you are getting into the nitty gritty 1:5 details of a facade skin, you are actually using similar language – stability, redundancy, cost/performance ratio, cost of maintainence, ease of maintainence, standards etc.

BTW, I think that one of the main reasons why Architecture will not be able to produce better quality in the future, boils down to two basic things in this country:

1) Man Power stabililty, or people always leaving.

2) Tools and people who can use them. See my post here:

I mean, think of the screen shots of Shogun Total War game above – that is the kind of order and sophistication, with which a computer should be able to manipulate a real designed object like a building.

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