Genetic fractal objects tell an intriguing story. These objects are constructed from a genetic sequence that determines what the object will be, how it will look and behave. Like living entities, these objects have “DNA”.
Conceptually, this could be true for any object. When a designer crafts an object, she gives expression to her internal vision of this object. This she then translates into a choice of materials, drawings and instructions for its manufacturing. Conceptually, she has masters the “DNA” of this thing.
But with genetic fractals this notion is not conceptual, they really have their own design embedded in a genetic code. Each element of such objects have genes that “know” what that element does, what its function is and how it related to its environment. Using a genetic fractal rendering tool, this genetic code will generate an object that may then be created on a 3D printer.
The intelligence that is behind form and function is truly within the virtual DNA of the object and so with genetic fractals, a designer does not approach design from the traditional engineering viewpoint where we carefully add and remove materials to construct an object. Instead she builds and manipulates a genetic sequence that will grow into the object. An object may be clumsy or inadequate at first, but as the designer manipulates the genetic code, replacing genes here and there, the object evolves until it meets the her expectations,
“as the designer manipulates the genetic code, the object evolves until it meets her expectations”
With the help of the designer, the object now becomes an evolutionary entity. It is not a thing anymore; it has becom a species. When we give this tool to the user, then he becomes the designer. He can now interact with the object’s genetic code and urge it to adapt to his needs. The object will adapt to him and to its environment.
Through the sympathetic relationship with the user, the object that has become a species will evolve and strangely, begins to live a life of its own. Like the biological species, it can live on beyond its physical lifetime. We can use Its DNA to regenerate the object and perhaps improve it. As such it will pursue its evolution in symbiosis with the user.
Our relationship with objects wil change. Owning things will become less important then owning the DNA of things. With that DNA we can always regenerate the things we surround ourselves with. We can share the DNA with others or we can mash it up and create new things. We can store the DNA and rid ourselves of the objects we don’t need anymore but later, when the need arises again, we can regenerate these objects. This will lead to a minimalist and non-materialistic world that is perfectly adapted to us. That’s great, right!?