Tomorrow’s spaces will be formed from interconnected and intelligent components that are aware of the human presence, and are able to communicate, assess, and act. The role of the hybrid designer must evolve to incorporate both sets of skills — architect and interaction designer — so that we can create meaningful places that support systems of interconnected intelligent devices.
The hybrid designer will not be responsible solely for “concretization” of the building as an object, as described by Christian Norberg-Schulz, but rather for orchestrating a new context — a dynamic system of elements that flex and adapt to support our needs for environmental, behavioral, and social settings. Its choreography will be influenced by an evolving set of actors. As Nishat Awan states, “The dynamic, and hence temporal, nature of space means that spatial production must be understood as part of an evolving sequence, with no fixed start or finish, and that multiple actors contribute at various stages.”[—]
The hybrid designer will go beyond problem solving and practicality, to write the manifesto and express what it means to live in an interconnected society through architecture. To articulate how our buildings have become gateways to communities of connection and alternative experience. Or, to personify each building as a character in the story of a life, responding to you, shaping your environment to suit your needs, analyzing situations, providing feedback, and recalling past experience. In fact, by giving voice to architecture through interconnectedness, we may re-create a time when humans had a closer relationship to space and its meaning. If nothing else, at least we can become better listeners.