In the year 1963, Alexander wrote that “most of the difficulties of design are not of the computable sort”. Today, almost six decades later, we arrived in the age of urban computing, social media and machine learning. So, does Alexander’s statement still hold true now? In this talk, we present systems for computer-aided urban planning and critically discuss the (societal) implications of these technologies.
Pascal directs the Esri R&D Center Zurich where new technologies for urban planning and 3D mapping are developed. He is the original author of CityEngine, which is used in film productions (Blade Runner 2049, Zootopia,…) and urban design (by HOK, SOM, Foster+Partners,…). In 2008, Pascal co-founded the start-up company Procedural which 3.5 years later was successfully sold to Esri. Previously, in his PhD at ETH Zurich, he pioneered novel methods for the procedural modeling of cities and buildings which are now part of CityEngine, ArcGIS Urban, and ArcGIS Pro. Pascal has published more than 50 scientific papers including SIGGRAPH and has held numerous invited talks at conferences, universities and companies all over the world. His body of artistic work includes short movies, music videos, over 50 live visuals performances, and interactive museum installations including Ars Electronica.