We live in the age of the digital revolution. The internet seems to be everywhere — and as buildings get smarter, this will be ever more common. You see, the internet provides the ability to push and pull information, and this information can serve to connect you with your architectural spaces in new ways.
The internet connects. It connects people with people, and it can connect people with objects. For example the internet can pull information into your architectural design — it can pull information regarding occupant usage, the weather, the traffic, virtual social interactions, or even physical interactions in remote places. The internet provides real-time critical information that can really help to make your building smarter.
So, how might this all work? And how can you begin to think about the internet in a way that boosts your own smart building designs?
Well, as you design — think about what information could help to make your design better for your occupants. Then, be creative about the ways in which you inject that information into your design. For example, might you use information about occupant usage to help inform, inspire, or motivate your building occupant to engage in certain behaviors (like green sustainable behaviors, for instance)?
Also, you can use your architecture to help “visualize” and create “experiences” for occupants that synthesize social interactions from the internet. These could be social interactions belonging to an occupant’s immediate circle of friends, or they could be social interactions coming from a particular geographic region, for example. You could use such social interactions to help “guide” occupants as they engage and interact with your architectural design.
In the end, I invite you to look toward the internet as a way to better connect your occupants with their environment and with each other. After all, the internet coupling with buildings can go beyond simply “remote controlled lighting”. It can be used to help an architecture perform better as it engages with its occupants in real-time.
Simply understand that as objects within buildings connect with each other, with their surrounding environment, and with people — architecture can become smarter by the way it meets occupants’ needs in entirely new ways. And to do this, the internet can be an invaluable resource.