Cybernetic Models
Performative Models workshop with Omar Khan

Cybernetics in the broadest sense is a science that deals with organizations, information and systems. It explores systems that work on a basis of feedback loops of information, where action by the system in an environment causes a change in the environment and/or the system itself.

This workshop focused on the part of Cybernetics that deals with complexity. Complexity is a product of interaction between elements within the system when these interactions are nonlinear. This produces a dynamic causal and conditional system where each component of the system reacts and affects the other.

Students took a systemic concept of their project and turned it into a physical model. In a cybernetic model internal rules of the system, rather than design agendas, were guiding its creation. Properties of materials used (rubber, plastic, wood, steel, water, ink…) act as embedded rules defining how the model behaves, creating an analogue computer where processes of the initial project are coded into the physical structure of the model. By performing the model, the concepts of the original system were tested. Through observation, modification and classification of the produced states of the model, students were able to make refinement to their system and improve their project.

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