1. Of Sails and Sieves and Sticky Tape

  1. Dr Tuba Kocatürk MSc Digital Architectural Design architect Senior Lecturer Programme Director and
  2. Dr Benachir Medjdoub PhD Lecturer Principal Investigator Reader
  1. Bryan Lawson

Published Online: 20 APR 2011

DOI: 10.1002/9781444392395.ch1

Distributed Intelligence in Design

Distributed Intelligence in Design

How to Cite

Lawson, B. (2011) Of Sails and Sieves and Sticky Tape, in Distributed Intelligence in Design (eds T. Kocatürk and B. Medjdoub), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444392395.ch1

Editor Information

  1. School of the Built Environment, Salford University, UK

Author Information

  1. University of Sheffi eld, UK

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 20 APR 2011
  2. Published Print: 7 JAN 2011

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781444333381

Online ISBN: 9781444392395



  • distributed intelligence in design - sails and sieves and sticky tape;
  • creative conceptual design - developers of CAD, not being caught up with it;
  • software used, FTP server holding jpegs - Microsoft Office documents and pdfs;
  • Word and Acrobat Reader, and basic 3-D modelling software - inert pdf files for exchange;
  • design as a cognitive task - a psychologist's perspective, role of computers changing;
  • cognitive scientists, into what - can be called ‘computation theory of mind’ camp;
  • cognitive scientists, seeing design - as a challenge that collapses this house of cards;
  • Lawson and Dorst's, description - of what constitutes design expertise;
  • new ways of communicating with computers;
  • fundamental misunderstanding about nature of design expertise - ‘situations,’ needs and possible actions as existing in creative tension


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • Design as a cognitive task

  • What is so different about design?

  • New ways of communicating with computers

  • Conversations with the situation

  • A more positive approach

  • References