This is a manual investigating the subject of urban ecology and systemic development from the perspective of architectural design. It sets out to explore two main goals: to discuss the contemporary relevance of a systemic practice to architectural design, and to share a toolbox of informational design protocols developed to describe the city as a territory of self-organization. Collecting together nearly a decade of design experiments by the authors and their practice, ecoLogicStudio, the book is organized into three design domains; environments, machines and behavioral spaces. The conversation touches disciplinary definitions, often perceived as oppositions, such as sustainable development versus ecologic urbanization, algorithmic [process driven] versus critical [narrative driven] architecture, bottom-up tactical versus top-down strategic design, space as patterns of use versus behavioral space, low tech materiality versus high tech design, the boundary of the natural and the artificial realms within the city and architecture. A new kind of emergent real-time world-city is presented in the book in the form of an operational design manual for the assemblage of proto-architectures, the incubation of proto-gardens and the coding of proto-interfaces. These proto-types of machinic architecture materialize as synthetic hybrids embedded with biological life [proto-gardens], computational power, behavioral responsiveness [cyber-gardens], spatial articulation [ecoMachines and Fibrous structures], remote sensing [FunClouds], and communication capabilities [Footprint Grotto]. With this manual ecoLogicStudio illustrates a form of kw-how that constitutes the basis for its critical practice. Such a mode of practice is better understood through the actual application of the manual, by experiencing architecture as an experimental practice devoted to promote a critical understanding of our society through the evolution of a personal architectural kwledge; a new individual modus operandi able to be shared and interconnected to trigger new appetites, new hungers in crafting a better environment. Supporting the authors' own essays and projects are contributions from key invators in conte mporary architecture and urban design -- Michael Batty, Andrew Hudson-Smith, Michael Weinstock and Patrik Schumacher.
Marco Poletto and Claudia Pasquero are directors of ecoLogicStudio ltd and Unit Masters of Inter10 at the Architectural Association School of Architecture, London