Date of Award

9-2011

Degree Name

MS in Computer Science

Department

Computer Science

Advisor

Franz Kurfess

Abstract

Computer-aided architectural design (CAAD) programs represent architectural design at a low level of spatial abstraction. While this representation model allows CAAD programs to capture the precise spatial characteristics of a design, it means that CAAD programs lack the underlying computational apparatus necessary to reason about design at a conceptual level.

This thesis is a first step towards building a framework that bridges the gap between the conceptual aspects of a design and its low level CAAD-based spatial representation. Specifically, this thesis presents a new framework, referred to as the Conceptual Requirements Reasoner (CRR), which provides an architect with a framework to validate conceptual design requirements. The CRR will demonstrate how qualitative spatial representation and reasoning techniques can be used as the link between a design's conceptual requirements and its underlying quantitative spatial representation.

A museum case study is presented to demonstrate the application of the CRR in a real world design context. It introduces a set of museum design requirements identified in research and shows how these requirements can be validated using the CRR. The results of the case study shows that the CRR is an effective tool for conceptual requirements reasoning.