“Sense of Place” has a lot of references to it in Wikipedia that showed up in LibraryThing. I have to say I don’t know much about “Sense of Place” or how to mentally process it just yet, which means I should look into it at some point.
Oh boy. I have a feeling this might be _just_ beyond me. Certain things about architecture (and art) about form and their effects on humans always feels just out of reach of my grasp, as if they know something that I can’t see. I know Timothy Fugmann sees it – and a few others who I’ll tag when I think of it can see it but for me, I always “sort of ‘get it'” but there seems to be a “more” that I’m not getting.
Christopher Alexander seems to be the guru of a certain of way of seeing public spaces. It’s a fascinating mix of ultra-conservative in a “this is how things are” way but through this adherence to these patterns, it brings a freedom I think. There’s a ‘something’ I’m missing, but that’s why I should try going through Christopher Alexander’s work a bit and see if I can ‘see’ what he and so many others can see.
Funny thing I see what he’s getting at: organic-ness of stuff and how our humanness can’t be separated from it, so maybe I *do* understand it but wouldn’t word it like he does? I don’t know.
This is his latest work, but maybe I should read his early work from the mid 1960s.
It’s a funny thing: this has the same characteristic to me where I ‘get it’ and yet there’s still a something that’s slipping past me.
If you asked me randomly: What should be done to improve public interaction? I would say “more public parks but interspersed among the buildings in an organic way, wider sidewalks, many more “slow paths” that meander and little eddies for small group congregating.
I can see it in my head and I know how I’d do it. I also know that these are the kinds of things law enforcement wouldn’t like as it increases privacy for small groups, which is usually considered “a problem”.
But as I read texts about public spaces, I guess the part I’m missing in the writings is “the want”. Spaces people will want to go into. Rather, the texts seem to be written in such a way that more meetings and closer friendships are a given based upon the spaces themselves.
So it may be a writing style thing that’s slipping past me.
Ah ha! I know what’s slipping by me. A review of the 1964 edition of his book, “Notes on the Synthesis of Form” says:
“The mathematics underlying this method, based mainly on set theory, is fully developed in a long appendix.”
Set theory is form and not algorithmic (function). I’m more familiar with function rather than form, hence the sense that I’m reading something foreign. Good good – I think I can translate now.