Today, after a long wait, I decided to write another instalment for the Archikey.com blog. With previous editions illustrating more of the technical considerations behind Archikey.com, this post will highlight some of the content on Archikey.com from a more artistic viewpoint. Growing up in a small town with only trees obscuring parts of the sky, it is an amazing experience to stroll around some of the more metropolitan areas of the world. The picture series below show some of the skyscrapers in Toronto, Canada.
At some point in time, you are bound to loose track of the pictures you take all over the world, if you don’t organize them. But even putting them all in neat different folders on your hard drive makes it hard to find that particular picture back. That’s simply because your hard-drive is not structured as nifty as Archikey.com is. The way Archikey.com is structured, using Keys, makes it tremendously easy to find a picture back by searching for the Keys that are applied to the building or the picture. And it’s a great way to share pictures with your friends as well!
This way I can easily look back at the pictures I have taken in the United States:
Or view all the pictures I have taken of building interiors:
Or look at all my skyscrapers:
Better yet, pictures of interiors of skyscraper in the United States, which are, unfortunately, not an awful lot:
Of course this feature depends on the effort you invest yourself in classifying the information on buildings and pictures. Not yet a member? Register in a second for free and start sharing and organizing your images.
Archikey.com contains a large database of buildings and pictures. From time to time I get the question what the exact difference is between searching for buildings and searching for pictures. I must admit that at first glance these concepts might seem rather similar. Therefore, in this blog post I will briefly explain the differences.
For starters, a single building can have multiple pictures, so if you would search Archikey.com for “Guggenheim” for buildings, you would get the two Guggenheim museums that are present in the database: the one in New York and the one in Bilbao, Spain. However, if you would search for pictures of “Guggenheim” you would get all 16 pictures of the two museums.
But on the other hand, a single picture can have multiple buildings too. For example this picture of Lower Manhattan from the Hudson river contains a total of 13 buildings. When browsing for pictures of New York this picture is only listed once, whereas if you would search for buildings in New York the picture is listed 13 times, successively zoomed in on the different buildings.
But lastly, perhaps the most interesting distinction, between searching for buildings and searching for pictures, is the fact that pictures can have Keys assigned too. If you do not know what Keys are, I advise you to read this blog post first. On Archikey.com the information about buildings and pictures is specified using Keys, which are short textual or numerical snippets. To illustrate: Keys can be used for pictures to list the weather conditions or the time of day the pictures was taken, or describe whether the picture is of the interior of the exterior of a building. For example: when looking for pictures of churches around the world, one can list only the interior of churches [Including this magnificent interior of the Église Saint-Joseph du Havre in Le Havre, France designed by Auguste Perret]. Or one could only list church exteriors [Including this Light art installation on a church facade in that I highlighted in my previous blog post].
Of course a merry Christmas to all of you and an inspirational 2012! To conclude: remember that all the pictures on Archikey.com and the information about them are provided by the community, we hope that you will provide a helping hand too!
Glow is an anual event in Eindhoven, the Netherlands during which the entire city centre is transformed by night into a colorfull tribute to artificial light. This year’s theme was Illusion and reality.
Eindhoven is a city of many aspects, it changes between day and night
between being open and insular, between dense architecture and
green open spaces between light and a dark. What one moment
seems a peaceful garden, becomes if twilight falls, a decor of eerie
shadows. What could be perceived as a romantic bridge during the day
or a chilly bicycle tunnel, in the evening, becomes a beacon of light or a maze of color.
What is the illusion and what is the reality, or where does art begin and reality end ?
Of course yours truly was there to take a few quick snapshots of which you can find selection attached below.
See all pictures of Glow2011 and be sure to add your own:
Archikey.com is the result of a couple of guys thinking that information on the built environment should be easily accessible, structured in a better way and freely available to anyone in the world.
In order for this to work, we came up with the concept of Keys (hence the name Archikey.com) to specify information about buildings. These Keys are short snippets of text about characteristics of the building. For example, the architect that designed the building or the height of the building. These Keys can either be textual, for example all building by Skidmore, Owings and Merrill. Or these keys can be numerical, for example all buildings between 100 meter and 150 meter high.
Building Information Modeling
We kind of stole this idea from the concept of Building Information Modeling (BIM), a rather new methodology of creating buildings in which drawings are not merely a collections of lines, but instead are a representation of actual building elements with specifications on how they preform (for example: insulate) your building. An other aspect of such a Building Information Model is that it is multidisciplinary, it contains information that is of interest for the architect, engineers, contractor, you name it. By working in the same model, errors in communication are reduced. As you might have guessed, Archikey too provides multi-disciplinary information.
An other thing we see in the Architecture Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry is that companies are becoming more and more globally active. For example, architectural firms like Rem Koolhaas‘ OMA are erecting buildings on every single continent. What is so great about this notion of Keys is that they are easily translated. Most of the keys are just a few words, that once they are translated into an other language can be used for every building for which that Key is assigned. Even better, for some reason people decided to use different units of measure and currencies all over the world. On Archikey.com it will be possible to convert the numerical Keys on the fly to your units of preference and search in the units you are comfortable with.
The built environment is immensely large. We count on you to help us in helping you provide all this information. All the buildings and pictures on this website are added by people like you and me. So create an account on Archikey and start sharing your knowledge.
As you might have noticed, the whole website looks like a rather dusty filing cabinet, but we try to spice things up by adding some nice architectural photography. In this blog post we have tried to sketch our vision of what we hope Archikey.com to become, but we are not there yet. We hope that you will follow us on Twitter and visit Archikey.com regularly to stay posted on updates of new functionality and exciting features.