Kyle Steinfeld

Associate Professor of Architecture at UC Berkeley

The aim of my research and creative work is to illuminate the dynamic relationship between the creative practice of design and computational design methods, thereby enabling a more inventive, informed, responsive, and responsible practice of architecture.

Too often in the relatively young subject area of Design Computation, the influence of software tools on the creative practice of design is either vastly over- or under-stated, with one of these characterized as a direct determinant of the other. My work seeks to demonstrate that while new technologies of design do not directly determine social relationships, they are among the network of actors – designers and specialists, software and users, data and drawings – that compete to shape the diffusion of design authorship and the social distribution of design work. More than ever, as the contexts relevant to design (social, environmental, phenomenal) are understood to operate at scales for which traditional design methods struggle to account, the conditions that give shape to an architectural intervention are apprehended through data and are mediated by software. A clear-eyed understanding of the nature of this mediation enables both a critical reading of data and a creative engagement with software - capacities which are increasingly a prerequisite for an informed and responsible practice of architecture.

On Teaching
A teaching portfolio in the form of a database - a repository of work advanced in studio and seminar courses instructed by Kyle Steinfeld at UC Berkeley.
Drawing With Bots
A series of online experiments that explore human-computer collaborative drawing. In collaboration with Hao Zheng.
A mesh analysis and segmentation toolkit that facilitates the fabrication of discrete three-dimensional forms.
CBE Thermal Comfort Tool
A web-based graphical user interface was developed for thermal comfort prediction according to ASHRAE Standard-55.
An online platform that targets students of environmental design and facilitates the peer-to-peer exchange of representational techniques, software tutorials, and other skill-training material relevant to studio practice.
A prototyping visualization toolkit which enables the situational development of information graphics. By enabling more nuanced and customizable views of complex data, the software described here offers designers an exploratory framework in contrast to the highly directed tools currently available.