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The folks at The Wolfram Blog sent us a link to this story about using Mathematica to design unconventionally shaped, but (hopefully) structurally sound, brick walls that robotic masons might build. The author of the piece, Chris Carlson, Wolfram’s Chief Interactive Graphics Developer, writes:

A few groups have begun to experiment with the idea of robotically laid brick construction, most notably the Swiss firm Gramazio & Kohler (Facade Gantenbein Winery, Structural Oscillations), and recently, students at the Harvard University Graduate School of Design (On the Bri(n)ck). Inspired by these efforts, I set out to investigate the possibilities of robotic brick-wall construction with Mathematica….

There are lots of possible effects to investigate: displacing bricks, rotating them, leaving gaps between them, creating ledges of various depths for shadow effects, combining bricks of various colors, and so on.

Not really sure how feasible or sound these walls would be to build in the real world, but it certainly shows you some cool possibilities for design and special F/X in brickwork.

Designing the Brick Wall of the Future

Gareth Branwyn

Gareth Branwyn is a freelancer writer and the former Editorial Director of Maker Media. He is the author or editor of a dozen books on technology, DIY, and geek culture, including the first book about the web (Mosaic Quick Tour) and the Absolute Beginner’s Guide to Building Robots. He is currently working on a best-of collection of his writing, called Borg Like Me.


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Comments

  1. KentD says:

    Maybe some patterns could be designed with simple rules or templates so that a human could make them.
    Also, some bond patterns should be added for strength; some bricks are sideways to tie them to the next layer.

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