Although gooey archtitecture is technologically sophisticated and of interest from the perspective of pure research, it's innovative quality is geared to be a synthesis of existing and divergent technologies. There is a very strong aspect of bricolage, or piecing together of parts from unexpected areas of our daily life. There are machined gears, moving parts and motors pilfered from automobile window mechanisms. The sonars used for sampling data have been modified from Polaroid range finders. Gooey architecture is about improvisation on many levels.

The walls of the installation consist primarily of 5 mm. extruded honeycombed polyethylene panels. This material is commonly used in the construction industry for prefabricated building panels since it is lightweight, rigid when bonded with finish panels, and a good insulator. It is also commonly used by the marine industry to construct boat hulls since it can be easily molded into curves and seamlessly shaped. Both of these applications apply rigid material to the outside faces of the sheets which come manufactured with a fibrous roving. In creating "GOOEY Architecture" however, we maintain the truly unique quality of the material by covering the panels with a weather protective, yet flexible silicone membrane. This allows the panels to retain their flexibility. These sheets have structural integrity, yet remain fully flexible in three dimensions. Such a composite panel allows us to fabricate walls which are malleable, yet have a high impact strength and good acoustic properties. The polyethylene sheets are fully bendable, do not crease and maintain their shape. Once we appropriated this wall material it became possible to conceive a truly fluid concrete architectural space.

The structure for the panels are essentially simple trusses. In the prototype, we use flexible fiberglass rods as compression struts and nylon chord as tensile members. Yet, the system serves not only as structural members, but by attaching motors to the tensile members, the camber of the fiberglass rods can be manipulated and controlled. Thus, in addition to their structural usage, the trusses perform the task of actually controlling the deformation of the walls.

We have employed very the traditional architectural elements of a wall and truss system. Yet, by using a fully flexible membrane material and a truss system which functions as a motion actuator, we are able to push standard construction into the realm of a truly revolutionary architecture.

The movements of the enclosure are controlled by a simple Pentium computer that process the data collected by sonars. Custom software allows us to program dynamic response patterns and relay data to microprocessors which actuate individual motors in the network. The programming used to control the systems is based upon "fuzzy logic" which allows for a fluid set of command structures. Sometimes known as "soft computing," this paradigm is tolerant of uncertainty and partial truth. The guiding principle of soft computing is to exploit this tolerance for imprecision in order to achieve a complex and fluid environment. As we progress, more complicated "personality" of the room will be achieved.

In addition, one of the primary goals for future incarnations of our installation depends upon hooking up the sensory apparatus to the web. In such a scenario, a three dimensional model of the space, corresponding precisely to the "actual" space of the installation, will allow users on the web to move virtually through the space through VRML and be able to interact with users who are physically inhabiting the space. Such a condition will be a fundamental advancement in narrowing the distinctions between these boundaries.

The installation will occupy approximately 3 meter by 4 meter space and be approximately 3 meters high.