The Ambient Cosmology (*Stack)
The Harmonic Ideal, that the ambient design process seeks to attain.
A series of strategies to help you answer the Elemental Questions below, to help you solve your "Harmonic Puzzle" and reach the Harmonic Ideal, above.
APD has a series of questions, in lieu of "Principles" (statements) found in most design systems. These elemental questions help sketch out your product's ambient characteristics, and how it interfaces with The Archetypes.
The Individual, The Environment & The Object are the three archetypes used to study what a person is trying to achieve, how they navigate their environment to achieve it, and how your object can aid in arriving at a positive conclusion.
The primary languages of perception: music (time), architecture (space) & physics (light) determine the characteristics of The Archetypes and how they engage with each other.
The ambient materials that exist across the universe & reality. The materials of The Individual includes things like "attention" and "curiosity" and "emotions", and the Environment contains forces like gravity & motion.
This is one possible order for the elements of this "stack". APD seeks to be interpreted "rhizomatically", but this illustration is provided as an aid in learning the materials.
Elements of this stack weave through, into, and between each other irrespective of their place in it.
This particular stack was ordered to increase comprehension and is based on around a series of expanding abstractions. These abstractions start with the fundamental, objective "ambient" characteristics of the universe (via physics) and progress down into the subjective human realm of perception, manifested as action via the questions & strategies focused on achieving specific outcomes (in this case, "Harmony").
Origami seems like a good metaphor for expressing the impermanence of design. That each object emerges from a collection of folds. The objects can be unfolded, fold by fold, to learn how they came to be.
For us, folds are made in time as well as space.
Folds leave imprints on the folded surface.
And they can be picked apart by anyone, to some degree.
Folds can be unconscious.
Folds can influence and be influenced by culture, politics or economics.
Folds create spaces - environments - that support and define smaller folds within them. Like Russian nesting dolls.
Folds form infrastructures to support future folds.
Every fold constrains the possibility space for the next fold.
Single folds are simple, but can be combined together to form emergent complexity.
All objects in Origami emerge from two base folds: The Mountain & The Valley. Two folds lead to many outcomes. Life is similar.
Folds can be unfolded, with its history intact.
Playgrounds over Paths
Today's standard design wisdom focuses on the design of linear paths. Sometimes they may branch, but they're ultimately a sequential set of steps towards a desired outcome.
Within complex systems, these paths often lack the flexibility to adapt to emergent conditions - users acting outside the "designed boundaries".
Instead of designing explicit paths, APD is oriented towards the design of playgrounds - limited spaces where the boundaries are defined by the mechanics of the system. Within these playgrounds, desire paths will naturally form based on different factors: cost, convenience, bounded rationality, etc.
Instead of designing the "center" and scripting how activities within it must unfold, it designs the periphery instead, leaving the center alone. It hopes to create a free space, that can accommodate the emergent behaviors of its users.
land/object need something inbetween
flooded vehicle or a blind orientation