architectural big history


Life is nothing but an electron looking for a place to rest.

— Nobel Prize Winning Physiologist Albert Szent-GyÖrgyi 1937

This is an Architect’s Take on the Universe!
After many years of designing buildings and thinking about architecture, I am taking some time off to write and illustrate a science book:

A Big History of Architecture, from the Big Bang Until Now:
How Information Sculpts Energy into Form
ALL the FORMS of our universe = Bricks (Atoms=particles including electrons) x Mortar (Information)

1- BASED ON SCIENCE: Information Sculpts Energy: A Big History of Architectural Form is based 100% on the sciences and physics (Information is Physical -Chapter 4 of Programming the Universe, Seth Lloyd; 2011, page 65).
2- ILLUSTRATED: Like architectural drawings, this book is being illustrated to make the concept of information sculpting energy (atoms) easy to understand and make present-day evolving human design strategies very comprehensive

SYNOPSIS: ENERGY X INFORMATION=FORM finds a very simple universal pattern that all form, from inorganic to organic (life), sapient beings to their architectural forms, is an evolving continuum of a directional self-organization towards forms enabling energy flow.

All form, inorganic matter, living beings, tools and architecture, is the result of working information evolving forms that help channel energy. Over the long haul natural selection is based on forms that best allow energy flow, thus evolution sculpts forms increasingly able to channel and connect, and to further direct energy flow.

Which comes first, the energy or the information? Who knows, it’s like the yin and the yang, one needs the other to exist. Energy flow uses available information to create order and cooperation, with the resultant form’s organization surviving as a function of continued energy flow in that particular information environment. This can be seen on every level of the universe, from the simplest atomic structure of a hydrogen atom to the existence of life, to human societies, a Nobel Prize-proven economic and evolutionary principle along with mutation and natural selection. (See Super Cooperators, Altruism, Evolution, and Why We Need Each Other To Succeed by Martin A. Nowack with Roger Highfield. Also see the Nobel prizes in Economics: good organization and working together is energy efficient.)

As is illustrated, the physical, biological and sapient universe’s form whose organization directs and connects energy through sustainable, long term pathways built by working information, is naturally favored by the universe and spreads out far and wide in availability and influence in it’s various environments. This can be seen in 3 distinct energy flow environments building upon one another: the world of (1) physics, of (2) life and of (3) sapient consciousness.

This is why things are slowly improving→ 100K years ago we were hunter-gatherers sitting around open fires, watching our backs for wolves and other predators. Now, in nations that have efficiently organized their cultures to utilize information resources, all we have to do is push a button for heat or cool air and we have evolved the wolves into our most loyal friends!

The free world, exposed to all incoming information and naturally honing the very human long-term ability to pick, choose and understand other human energy flows, will always be more energetic  than societies that filter their information flow through a few people at the top. In the free world information travels freely from the bottom to the top, and visa versa, creating a “central nervous system” of very alive, responsive and innovative societies and cultures.