The Collection: High Tech-Low Tech…

High Technology – Low Technology

The duality of high technology and low technology can be an interesting one. The two forces can be opposing or complementary. The intention of this collection is to explore and define the relationship between these two extremes under the lens of design.

  1. Opposing Force – In contemporary terms, low technology can be thought of a reaction to the ultra-technological, or perhaps overly specialized. In a way, the recent DIY movement can be thought of as a reaction to the ultra-technological or a rethinking of the necessity. What are the physical manifestations of this reaction to the ultra technological?
  2. Complementary Force – The way in which the low tech and high tech can be combined to create a system or object that can be both highly sophisticate and highly operable (not that high tech implies a low level of operability, but frequently the more sophisticated the technology the more sophisticated the user must be). For example there have been many advancements in how we harness energy, specifically kinetic wave energy, that can be both high tech (in its mechanical composition) and low tech (as in its application). One other example of this complementary force could be architecture designed for disaster relief areas. The architectural assembly may or may not be high tech, but ultimately the structures must be designed to be operated by a a single person (or few) or by an unsophisticated user, or both.

More to come on this thought…..


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