Archinect Lexicon: “Omnipresent Computing”


Image Credit: Archinect/Midjourney

Image Credit: Archinect/Midjourney

Architect’s Lexicon focuses on newly invented (or adopted) vocabulary within the architectural community. For this installment, we are presenting a central term on how technology and artificial intelligence can be seamlessly incorporated into the buildings and cities of the future.

“The ubiquitous calculation“, also known as pervasive computing, is a concept in computer science and engineering where computation is made to appear anytime, anywhere. In this type of computation, the technology becomes virtually invisible in our lives. Instead of a dedicated device like a desktop computer, ubiquitous computing can occur using any device, in any location, and in any format.A user interacts with the computer, which can exist in many different forms including laptops, tablets, and terminals in everyday objects like a refrigerator or a pair of glasses.

The goal of ubiquitous computing is to create an ambient intelligence in which network devices embedded in the environment provide connectivity and discrete services at all times, thereby enhancing human experience and quality of life without explicit device awareness and the systems involved.

In an architectural context, the integration of ubiquitous computing within architecture transforms buildings into interactive and adaptive environments that respond intelligently to human presence and behavior, providing greater comfort, safety and efficiency. This leads to the development of what are often called ‘smart buildings’ or ‘smart cities’.

Related on Archinect: ChatGPT Interviews Matias del Campo: Architecture, hallucinations and other exotic happenings

Examples of the profound implications of ubiquitous computing in architecture include:

  1. Intelligent building systems: With integrated sensors and actuators, buildings can adapt their settings according to the needs of the inhabitants or energy efficiency. For example, the temperature can be automatically adjusted based on occupancy and the lights can be dimmed or dimmed based on the amount of natural daylight.
  2. Improved accessibility: With ubiquitous computing, buildings can become more accessible. For example, doors can open automatically for people carrying groceries or elevators can be called from a smartphone.
  3. Safety and security: Ubiquitous computing can improve the safety and security of buildings. Security systems can be smarter and more proactive. For example, they could detect unusual activity and alert security personnel or building residents.
  4. Maintenance: Sensors embedded in the building infrastructure can detect potential problems (such as leaks or electrical problems) before they become significant, enabling preventative maintenance.

Ubiquitous computing, while beneficial in many ways, also carries potential problems related notably to privacy, security, and addiction.

The vast network of sensors and devices that collect data can pose a serious threat to privacy if misused or if data falls into the wrong hands. An abundance of personal information is recorded and processed, from habits and routines to preferences, potentially enabling a level of personal surveillance and intrusion currently unmatched. Furthermore, pervasive interconnectivity can make buildings and cities vulnerable to cyberattacks, disrupting critical systems and infrastructure.

#Archinect #Lexicon #Omnipresent #Computing

Leave a Comment