“We can characterize design as being different to craft (because the designer does not directly act on the material, but has an indirect, and arguably more powerful, way of controlling materialization). Similarly, we might characterize computational design as being different to conventional design (because the designer is not directly drawing the geometry, but has an indirect, and arguably more powerful, way of controlling that geometry using computational design tools).
In this way we should view computational design as part of a normal progression in which the designer and the artifact are separated by an increasing number of levels of indirection, that in turn introduce higher levels of expression and control. Opponents of this may question whether introducing these levels of indirection is in fact progress, arguing that intuition and spontaneity will be inhibited with the increased remoteness between the designer and artifact, Happily these layers of indirection are not arranged linearly, but can be configured to form a closed loop. The advent of digitally controlled fabrication means that the ‘geometrically aware’ and ‘computationally enabled’ designer is as close to the materialization as in the original craft process, but with precision and control and the ability to explore variation which was previously unimaginable.
The question now is: what are the characteristics of computational design tools that facilitate this approach to design and what are the corresponding abstractions which need to be internalized and operationalised by designers?”
AISH, R., 2006. Exploring the analogy that parametric design is a game in OOSTERHUIS, K., and FEIREISS, L., (eds.) The architecture co-laboratory: game set and match II. On computer games, advanced geometries and digital technologies. Rotterdam: Episode Publishers. pp 203.