Monday, April 28, 2014


Post by Gautam Shah

Opening systems on the street or entrance foyer are the prime places for personalization. These are straightforward or direct declarations, as much as they are subtle identifications.

The Direct Expressions highlight the building number, street name, postal distribution code, and name of the owner. They also show timings and conditions of visitations. Identifiers like, the status of the owner, the nature and antiquity of the ownership, occupiers’ name, caste, educational qualifications, honours, nationality, titles, are marked over the door.

The identifying elements are in linguistic expressions like Quotes and couplets. These are often in ancient languages, or in forms which are incomprehensible to themselves or others, but placed as traditions demand it. Names and indicators of Gods and saints not only reflect the religious affinity, but also the faith in specific groups. Display of forms, patterns, signs and symbols reveal the owner’s affiliation with secret communities. 

The declarative elements announce the nature of opening like, entry, exit, restricted access. These elements are placed on the outer face of an entrance to warn new visitors. And the same are occasionally placed on the interior side to reinforce the message to a departing visitor (e.g. close the door gently or fully, visit again).
The Indirect Expressions are little more abstract or implied. These somehow suggest the ethnicity, social standing, religion or faith. These also show the nature of building use like place of residence, worship, or commerce, etc. Often the abstracted forms are placed as continuation of traditions without being aware of the purpose or significance.

 The street side openings are the chief locations where the declarative elements are placed. But these can also occur at entry points of sub spaces such as kitchen, prayer room, bed room, toilet, etc
The identification and declarative elements are very essential enrichment and for personalization of the building and its sub sections. Some declarations result from attempts to personalize a building. Immigrants try to enrich their homes with a lifestyle they have inherited. These lifestyle enrichments are like the colours, fabrics, furniture, landscaping, sculptures and other decorative feature. Similarly the peculiar odours of foods and sounds generating from their buildings declare the owner’s identity.

  Identification elements differentiate a building within a group, or associate the building to a category such as class or colony. In a mass housing colony, people treat their doors, windows, or curtains, extravagantly different from their neighbours. Opposite to this, identical doors and windows conjoin several, even differently styled buildings into a cohesive entity, a colony.

 The entrance door (or a street window) is not just the place of arrival but is a metaphoric point of entrance for everything, good or evil, friend or enemy, known or unknown. A visitor, and everything else, is expected to arrive at the main door, in spite of many other convenient points. In some way it is a point of fear, doubt and danger and hope, fulfillment and safety. Means of physical and spiritual defence are placed here, even though there may be other vulnerable locations in a building.

 Door signage and graffiti are placed by owners and by street users. This may be for revenge, for the political or hate messaging or as a billboard. The door or surround area declarations are for publicity, information or as extremely personal statement.
 The visitor’s announcement and identification systems are placed near the formal entrance, This entrance-based entities include: bells, knockers, buzzers, talking pipes, whistles, sirens, rattlers, vibrators, horns, intercoms, video recognition, surveillance systems

A door or front side opening like windows, balconies are the focal point of a building, so anything that is or placed here is considered as delivered to the owner or occupier of the space. In case of a religious building it is an offering to God. At pragmatic level the messages of welcome, farewell, congratulations, facilitations, list of honours, notices, results, declarations, legal attachments, seals, custodial notices, etc. are placed over the door. Indicative objects or symbols are placed to identify faith, religion or profession, etc. but also as protecting and beneficiary signs. Chimes or sound creating hanging devices, hanging mobiles over the openings are believed to bring in good luck.

 There are many objects whose presence or absence over an entrance signifies certain conditions of the family. Absence of a Rangoli pattern (a colourful pattern drawn in the morning in front of the house) or a floral Toran means there is a mourning period for the family. Hindu household hangs the urn containing the ashes post cremation of the dead, outside and beside the door. The urn remains there till appropriate ceremonies are conducted and ashes are disposed off. The presence of an urn outside the door is a message to others that invitations for all joyous events may not be accepted by the house-owner. The presence of a swastika or other markings in vermillion colour over the door threshold indicates it is flourishing family and not a lonely widow’s residence. Bride and groom leave their palm prints over the door the marriage ceremonies. Similarly foot prints of a newly married bride and a pregnant lady in front and inside the entrance door are considered auspicious.


Thursday, April 24, 2014


Clay products forming techniques are of three basic types Surfacing, Casting and Moulding.

Surfacing are mainly in the form of thin coatings. These are applied by Daubing -rubbing in a thin paste of clay, Brushing or Coating -applying or spraying very thin layer, Dipping -immersing a product in clay slurry, Painting -creating very thin lined patterns or area fill-ins.

Castings are made with forms for shaping. For centrifugal process single outer form is required, but for other methods a set of inner and outer moulds may be necessary. Removal of inner mould from enclosing shape is tricky, and may require multi unit moulds. Bricks are called table cast because it requires a ring or edge frame over a flat surface. Casting can be done by extrusion through a shaped orifice.

Moulding is a process of shaping. Shaping the liquidised or pliable raw material with or without a shaping form called a mould. Other techniques include traditional hand-building methods such as rolling soft or hard slabs, coil formation and pinching. Small hand tools are used for shaping edges, cutting and engraving. A potter’s wheel is most popular shaping device.

The forming process, is determined by the clay ingredients available and the type of item required. Manufacturing processes consist of one or more of the following three methods.

1. Dry to semi dry or semi plastic process
2. Wet or plastic process
3. Liquidized process.

Dry or semi plastic processes are adopted in several conditions such as: where water supply is scarce, the condition of soil is very plastic and where high density mass is required.

In dry arid areas and sea coast locations availability of water for construction is a major issue. Quantity of water required to achieve homogeneous mass can be partly reduced by greater compaction. However, high compaction of the soil mass requires energy or an industrial set up. Such dry or semi-dry compaction is used for formation of high end ceramic products, such as the electric insulators and flooring tiles. For dry or semi dry high pressure castings, the ingredients have to be in pure state, thoroughly mixed, and homogenized with low amounts of water.

Dry or semi plastic processes are required for highly plastic soil which swell in volume due to addition of water. To avoid cracking on drying, the proportion of water is reduced with higher compaction. Outdoor clay surfaces such as the Cricket pitches, tennis courts, cinder tracks, rural raw roads are all created with low proportion of water but greater compaction. 

Wet or plastic processes allow sufficient time to a crafts-person to mould and finish an article. Moisture removal from such articles needs to be very slow and at a controlled rate. The item should have even wall thickness and transition from one thickness to another, if any, must be very gradual. Some wet or plastic clays require addition of fibrous materials to prevent cracking on drying. Sun-dried bricks or adobe and clay sods used to insulate roofs in a hot arid climate, Kutchh style wall decorations (Gujarat, India) of clay are examples of this type. Most of the household pottery products are manufactured through this process. 

Liquidized processes are used where through mixing of ingredients by wet grinding and solution with water is necessary. Liquidized process allows greater quality control. Industrial processes where standard size and shape items of very fine wall thickness and tolerance are necessary, porosity of the product is not a problem, very costly or rare ingredients are to be conservatively used, and where an additional quantity water for chemical reaction (such as for Plaster of Paris) is required. Removal of any additional water and moisture is more acute here than in wet or plastic processes. Most of the cow dung coating or daubing or mud plasters are of this type.

Saturday, April 19, 2014


Basic raw materials used for clay products and surface finishes are either top-organic soil or virgin-non organic soil.

Top or organic soils have substantial amounts of organic matters, from the decomposition of vegetation and human, animals excrete. The presence of organic matters makes a soil light in weight and dark in colour. Organic soils usually show high workability and low shrinkage characteristics. When organic soils are found below an existing layer and are old, contain gallic acid and tannin in small proportions but sufficient to act as fungicide and mild insecticide.

Virgin or non organic soils have negligible amounts of organic matters, and so reflect the basic characteristic of the predominant constituent element present, i.e., lime, silica, or alumina. However, soils do take-on the personality of the other minerals present in it. Iron oxide as ferric and ferrous is the most important colourant. Other important colourants are quartz, kaolin, mica etc. Soils show a wide range of colours from off-white to yellow, light brown and chocolate to radish tones. Non organic soils unless constituted by colloidal particles show very little plasticity. Some mineral constituents of such soils are reactive to water resulting in swelling and leaching.

Clays: Clays are fine albuminous products formed by decomposition of igneous rocks (lava activity). Clays are tenacious and plastic when wet. Clays are highly cohesive, have high capillaries and no internal friction. Clays are smooth to touch, sticky and plastic. Clays can also be classified according to their plasticity, or silt content. Hard clays or stiff clays have low sand content, and are difficult to excavate. Fine clays have medium sand content, and can be excavated with slight effort. Soft clays have coarse texture and are easy to excavate. Pure clays are mostly useless because of the high plasticity and excessive shrinkage on drying. Plastic clays are called fat clays, and less plastic clays are called lean clays. Clays are black, white, red, brown and yellow in colour. China Clay is a residual material, contaminated with silica, mica, felspar and decomposed felspar. Ball clay is a sedimentary material of fine grain size and some organic contents. It is finer than china clay. Fire clay are formed from felspar as residual and sedimentary deposit. Brick clays are high in iron content, and impurities of calcium compounds and organic matter.

Sands: Sand is made of small particles usually of sandstone / quartz. It is gritty to touch, no cohesion when dry and has no plasticity when wet. It has high internal friction and very little capillarity.

Silt: Silts are soils that are somewhere between a clay and sand. Silts are slightly gritty to touch and are darker in colour than clays.

Colloids: Colloids are gelatinous or gluey like matter found in clays consisting of ultra fine clay particles (size below .002mm) in the form of uncrystallized semi solid substances. The colloids absorb moisture and remain suspended, rather than settle down in water. Colloids have low moisture movement.

Shale: It is a compressed and laminated clay with or without organic matter. Shale is plastic when wet but disintegrates when dry.

Hard pan: A very dense accumulated mass of soil, consisting of clay, sand gravel, held together in a rock like but layered formation. Hard pan does not soften when wet.

Hoggin: A natural deposit of a mixture of small stones, grit and sand containing small amounts of clay as a binding agent.

Loam: A soft mixed deposit of sand, silt and clay. Loam is silty, sandy or clay depending on the contents.

Peat- muc: It is an accumulation of fibrous or spongy textured vegetative matter formed by the decay of plants. It is black or dark brown in colour. It is very compressible so unsuitable for heavy loads. The decomposition of organic material is more advanced in muc than in peat.

Humus: A dark brown earthy material formed by the decomposition of vegetative matter.

FILLERS for CLAY products

Fillers are generally other soils including minerals of various purity. Fillers, when added to a soil, physically and chemically change the quality of surface finish. Fillers constitute a substantial bulk compared with additives, which are used in smaller measures. However additives play a far effective role than fillers. Fillers and additives both play a role that may overlap, support or contradict each other.


A variety of substances are added to soils for one or many of the following reasons:

1. to improve the quality of basic soil material
2. to reduce or enhance the moisture content
3. to control moisture removal
4. to control plasticity
5. to achieve a desired colour / texture
6. to produce specific type of castings / mouldings
7. to improve weatherability of the final product
8. to improve upon insect vulnerability
9. to improve substrate adhesion in wet and dry states.

Cow dung is the most popular filler for clay type of surface finishes, in India and other developing countries. A typical dry season fresh cow dung consists of, 33% solids and 67% of water+gases etc., by weight.

The solids in a cow dung are as follows:
             Soluble organic          7.5 parts
             Insoluble organic       76.0 parts
             Soluble inorganic       4.5 parts
             Insoluble inorganic 12.0 parts
             Total                              100.0 parts by weight

A matured or rotted dung is a better filler then a fresh one. Rotting and consequent decomposition leaves an odourless mass that does not leach out with the addition of water. Rotting also generates fungicidal and insecticidal agents like gallic acid and tannin. Best way of maturing a dung is to mix it thoroughly with 1/3 of all the soil to be used and then allow the slurry to remain in a dark, warm, impermeable pit for at least 72 hours. The clay to cow dung proportion vary according to the type of use such as: 

Quality of dung                                    dry of summer or wet of monsoon
Type of soil                                            organic or mineral
Type of plaster                                      plain decorative, mural
Substrates to be plastered                  smooth or rough

Dung to clay ratios of 1:4 to 1:8 are common for plaster work, but 1:1 ratio is often used for flooring and art work. Cow dung provides homogeneity, improves workability, retards shrinkage on drying. Clay+cow dung surfaces are fairly impermeable to water.

Other dungs: Horse, donkey and other domestic and wild animals’ excretions are largely formed of fibres, and for that reason are eminently suitable as fillers for excessively plastic clays. But such dungs or excretions do not rot or decompose as readily as a cow dung.

Other additives for dung+clay mix: Chopped grass, hay, husk etc. reduce plasticity while providing fibrous reinforcement. Hay and grass are vulnerable to white ants, but husk of rice due to presence of toxic oils is almost immune from it. Long fibres of jute, coir, human and animal hair and short fibres of lint, viscose, glass wool and asbestos are selectively used for providing reinforcement against cracking.

Sand stone dust, shell and lime kanker (pebble or gravel like hard nodules) provide ‘body’, improve workability and to an extent reduce shrinkage. Calcined, hydraulic and non hydraulic limes and calcined gypsum (plaster of Paris) are used for better initial setting and over all strength. Whiting and china clay are mainly used to impart lighter colour tones. China-clay, because of its hydrophilic nature helps the mixing of water and `false'-initial setting of the mass. 

Fly ash, a fine residue of from pulverized burnt coal, collected from chimney stacks and boilers, contain 55 % SiO2, 30 % Al2O3, 5% CaO and 7 % Fe2O3. These crude forms of tri calcium silicate and tri calcium aluminate in the presence of water form a gelatinous compound, binding the clay particles. Fly ash is an excellent additive for mineral types of soils. Mineral coal ash, if fine and free from unburnt coal and sulphur can be used as filler provided black colour is not objectionable.

Pozolana is not cementious by itself, but mixed with lime and water it sets. It is an active siliceous material that reacts with hydrated lime to form a gel, which on drying becomes insoluble and stable. Slag is a siliceous waste taken off from the molten ores of metals. If slag is quenched immediately on its removal from a furnace, crystallization of silica into glassy structure is stopped. Slag also needs hydrated lime to form a gelatinous set able compound with water. Slags contain sulphur and can be used to neutralize alkaline soils.

Surkhi is a manufactured siliceous compound to which addition of lime is not required. All these materials, pozolana, slag, surkhi are used with organic plastic clays to achieve initial setting and with mineral soils for greater homogeneity.

Portland cement 5 % to 18% on dry clay weight basis is used for quick setting, better wear-tear properties and overall mass strength. Sandy or mineral soils require lesser amount of cement then organic or silt soils.

Additives like protein glues, vegetable gums and chemical binders are used to improve the plasticity and homogeneity. Such additives are of little use with plastic clays but are most suitable for sandy soils. Most of these are generally water thinnable and soften up every time they come into contact with slightest amount of humidity. But some chemical binders, though are water thinnable, harden on drying into a water insoluble matter. Typical agglutinates are guar gum, arabic gum, casein, soluble starches, cooked starches, molasses, sodium alginate, acrylate and other polymeric resins, amino resins etc. For optimum result the quantity required of agglutinate is small, but their high costs prohibit the use.

Monday, April 14, 2014


A building is a precious asset, acquired at a great expense of resources and effort. No one wants it to go waste so it gets reborn and put to different use. A building continues to be relevant for many different reasons.
A building, if it has a form of architectural styling then it is continued as a relic. When it has commemorative connections, in appreciation of its past, the building becomes a monument. Buildings that need to be remembered are restored or preserved to retain their form, but often in complete absence of the original setting. A building that has substantially lost the form and has indistinct circumstantial connections can be enacted through re-imaging of its setting, like through Sound & light shows (son et lumiere) shows and such enactments at historical sites.
Buildings are continued by Restorative as well as Enabling interventions. Repairs and maintenance schedules can restore parts, components and systems, provided the design is ‘open-ended’. However, holistic creations or ‘close-ended’ entities deteriorate completely without any scope for corrective measures. Enabling interventions add local capacities, or mediate by adjusting the existing capacities. Changes in the surroundings force functional changes in the building, however, whether one makes the changes to be with surroundings or resists, both ways the building gets altered.
Buildings persist, primarily by changing the functions they serve, secondly by redefining the form, and in rare cases, if possible, by altering the surroundings. Many corrective actions are necessary to use the building for a different purpose. Redefining the form of a building is even more difficult as it expected to satisfy simultaneously the functional needs and the value system in the society. In the first instance if the owner finds the corrective actions uneconomic, and would rather opt for a new entity. In the later case, the changes in the form may make the society apathetic to the building’s revised ‘look’. The preservation of surroundings of buildings requires social, political and financial involvement, beyond the reach of an owner or user. A building, if is a public utility, serves social functions, or is society’s pride and prestige, its surroundings will be maintained or even resurrected.
Young buildings seem invincible. Original intentions are still valid and surroundings relevant, and so no change of the function or form is required. Enabling interventions such as maintenance helps a building continue with a predictable and consistent pace. Such restorative efforts sustain the form and nurture the functions. New buildings have overcapacity risk margins. The parts and components are able to share the additional loads or risks posed by neighbouring constituents. So in early stages of buildings’ life no major replacements are required. New buildings do not need immediate changes unless the programme for it has been faulty, or it coincides with major changes in the political, social or economics fields. Changes in the early phase can be easily made, because original designer and design documents are available. At this point the building is structurally fit for habitation.
All changes, whether these are improvisations, preventive corrections, sufficiency provisions, or resurrectional actions, may be ‘minor, imperceptible, innocent, non-invasive or just touching’. Such small changes however, gradually add up to completely reformat the original form. These reformations are in addition to the parallel altering process of nature.
Buildings with associated values are carefully changed to maintain the form, and the functions. Such building seems to last forever, except when referenced against past records or memories. Though planned corrective measures or the inevitable (natural) changes may sum up into ‘non-recoverable’ damaging consequences.

Tuesday, April 8, 2014


Emerging technologies are those technical innovations which represent progressive developments within a field for competitive advantage. The era defining phrases such as Stone Age, Bronze Age, and Steel Age succinctly tell a story.

Technology is relevant on following counts
●         Materials
●         Conversion Processes
●         Deployment Design
●         Termination Processes

Technologies begin to be relevant, simultaneously on several of these counts. A challenge emerges on one of these counts, and the whole process gets a rethink. New materials have been conceived and devised because conversion processes demand the change, deployment design offers new opportunities, or the termination processes force a re-validation.

New materials emerge from technical up-gradation, development of new combinations, use of different processing methods, revolutionary deployment design and new concerns regarding cost-benefits, conservation, sustainability, disposal, recycling, etc. 

New Processes are needed to meet needs for varied forms, shapes and sizes in design fields. It is advantageous to move over to new materials, then to waste time and effort in fine tuning the current materials. There are also tendencies to move from speculative to guaranteed performance as much as taking up risks associated with new things.

Deployment Design was till now based on planner and spatial geometric configurations. It is now increasingly relying on understanding of natural forms and their behaviour (biometric), Neural networks, Molecular structures like DNA, cell and crystal formations, Galactic space bodies and Energy modelling.

Termination Processes were always very important for human interventions, such as: Building sites, large human settlements, war zones, areas of natural calamities and diseases. These places had to be abandoned wasting geo-political advantage, or expending the effort for a fresh start at a new location. Modern day activities are planned with concerns like conservation, preservation, recycling, safe-disposal, recovery of fringe benefits, etc.

          1        Miniaturization
          2        Regulated processing
          3        Multi lateral or functional operations
          4        Convergent technologies
          5        Quantum jumping
          6        Systems thinking
          7        Specificity and Localization
          8        Generality and Universalization
          9        Tools, Handling, Reach capacities
          10      Cross over absorption of technologies

1 Miniaturization
It works primarily as mass versus weight factor resulting in energy versus benefit ratio. In buildings it results as a space saving and handling factor. In certain circumstances the loss of the second (width) and third (depth or height) dimension makes an entity of nearly zero mass (embedded transistors in a printed circuit, CCDs, metallized film, etc.).

2 Regulated processing
Regulated processing conditions the response time and in many circumstances recovery time. These technologies were used in controlling the reverse action, bounce back or impact absorption, but are used in transfer systems such as elevators, walkways, conveyors, controls for gadgets, vibratory conditions, acoustics, climate control, etc. Regulated processing was once upon a time on simultaneous or synchronous movement control. One movement system (like a turning shaft) turned several sub systems through sprockets, gears and levers. This is now being changed with thyristor controls resulting in nearly no-movement devices.

3 Multi lateral or Multi functional operations
Multi functional processes have faster throughput, accurate and consistent output. Such plants save space, often operate in inclement environmental conditions, isolation, hazard prone situations and require no ergonomic considerations. Some of the known Multi Functional technologies are CNC machines, work stations, Robotics, Fewer components, Non-moving or passive operations, Distributed and Localized control systems, Integrated feed forward and feed back systems.

4 Convergent technologies
We add on technologies to existing systems as these are realized or become viable. Here there is an inherent sequencing of processes or layering of applications. Convergent technologies combine several such time and space relevant technologies. The singular offering has efficiency of integrated working, fewer components, and a compact design. As this is conceived as a replacement for existing set, it obviously has a neat and self-sufficient form. Convergent technologies are deficient in the sense that the solution offered is local, specific and still only a component-relevant (yet a larger component replacing several small ones).

5 Quantum jumping
Quantum Jumping is often called a ‘disruptive technology’. It is a radical concept that replaces one or several technologies. A quantum jumping technology must become effective very fast. Wireless telephony or mobiles have made a substantial change.

6 Systems thinking
Systems consist of elements, relationships and a structure or pattern. System thinking allows one to seamlessly transit from one to another type of system, and develop a common concept or an inclusive system. It is not a physical entity but helps in assimilating diverse technologies and orders.

7 Specificity and Localization
There is always a debate, should one be specific and locally relevant? By being so one saves on effort and redundancy of diversity. It saves on transport and negates the scope of communication. The former has turned costlier but the later has become faster, efficient, cheaper and multi mode. Specificity and localization have a tendency of creating closed ended systems or holistic architecture. The owner is omni present here and so there is a resistance to change such as alteration or enhancement. Most arts and crafts are intrinsically specific.

8 Generality and Universalization
These concepts develop when the creator, or producer is distanced in time and space from the user. These entities are designed as open ended systems for wider acceptability (markets-clientele) and longer relevance. Another cause for this is to create ‘windows’ or slots for upgrades and expansion. A pyramid is not an extendible form, a cylinder has limited scope for enhancement, but a cubical form has several sided options. A step further to this thinking is to create potential nodes where connections can occur as in case of space stations or Internet.
9 Tools, Handling, Reach capacities
Tools, handling systems and reach capacities have made it possible to deploy new designs. Last century some amazing tools like under water and argon welding, flexi drills, pneumatic tools and medical scopes. These capacities and Robots, Scopes, MMR, sonar and other imaging tools, Flex hand tools, pneumatic super speed tools, Spark erosion, Automation, control devices, Remote processing, material removal and mass building linked to 3D modelling.

10 Cross over absorption of technologies
Innovations in a field have more takers in other fields. Space travel innovations have been very extensively adopted in life sciences, fine chemicals and agriculture. Advances in Bio-sciences have inspired builders to design biometric architecture. Digital imaging, remote sensing and global positioning have collectively opened many new avenues of knowledge. Miniaturization has brought in drones, bugs, spiders are not just espionage tools but monitors for conditions inside the body, pipes, atomic reactors, mines and architectural models. These are some examples how different technologies overlap to generate a new entity, which in turn is employed in never conceived form. A technocrat needs to be aware of emergent technologies in other fields. Otherwise by the time these percolate to their own field, the developments out-date them.

Sunday, April 6, 2014


 Post --by Gautam Shah 


Spatial distancing or separation is very important factor that determines the relationships we allow to flourish and sustain in a Space. Other factors include our capacity of sensorial perception, psychological and biological needs

 Hall (1959) has stipulated that spatial separation also serves an expansive function. He made a study of the spatial relations that seem appropriate to various kinds of interactions. They vary with intimacy, and depend on the possibility of eye contact. They vary with the culture.
One can easily distinguish strangers from friends in an airport lounge. Strangers will keep a distance, taking alternate seats wherever possible. Friends tend to form clots, and families even pile one on the top of another. Total strangers will comfortably seat themselves only inches apart if the seats are back to back, but friends and the members of the family never arrange themselves in this way. Eye contact invites interaction and so is sought to the degree that intimacy already exists. (Hall E. T. 1959 The silent language).
Hall argues that there are spatial zones appropriate to various types of interactions. Though distances through virtual communication technology mediated interactions are likely to be different. Hall has also shown the cultural variations that South American needs much closer distance for impersonal information, than a North American desire or is accustomed to. 
Very close           75 to 150mm           Soft whisper, top secret
Close                  200 to 300mm         Audible whispers, very confidential
Near                   300 to 500mm         Soft voice, confidential
Neutral               500 to 900mm         Soft voice, low volume, personal subject matter
Neutral               1300 to 1500mm     Full voice, impersonal information
Public                 1700 to 2500mm     Slightly over-loud, information for others to hear
Across room       2500 to 6000mm     Loud voice, talking to a group
Hailing privately   6000 to 7500 mm   Indoors, Loud voice departures
Hailing public      30.00 mts                Outdoors, Loud voice shouting, departures and calls 

Impersonal discussion, takes place at 1200 to 1500 mm; cross the inner boundary of this zone and one’s interlocutor will retreat; cross the outer boundary and will advance or subtly change the manner in which to behave adopting the pattern appropriate to the new distance. One can move from impersonal discussion to personal matter by reducing the distance, or to a non personal information exchange by increasing the distance. TV anchors do the distance trick on their show. For an intimate question the anchor pushes forward own body (Larry King of CNN ), but as soon as the question sinks in with the guest, the anchor withdraws not just to the nominal position but little further backward. These distancing movements allow the guest to deliver the answer more objectively and the camera frames the guest alone for such a ‘heroic effort’. However, a host may intimidate the guest by doing exactly opposite of this.



  Post 171 -by Gautam Shah .  SUNDAY Feature on ART of Architecture John Terrick Williams (1860-1936) was a British painter, who was a me...