Posts Tagged ‘architecture’

Round Houses

Wednesday, December 30th, 2009

I recently had a thought about polygonal houses (a couple minutes ago, really).
Swiss Miss had posted a chair that used the corner of a room for support. It was basically just a shaped board.
I thought, Why would this be limited to a corner? I think just putting it against a wall would leave it open to tipping, but even a small corner should keep it up. And so: why are houses square?

The immediate thought that comes to mind is, “Houses are square because is really hard to work with circles.” And it is. But when you get right down to it, a circle is just an infinitely-sided polygon, which means there’s a corner at literally every spot.

So it’s the corners that are hard to work with.

I’m left with an idea: Give a house an arbitrary number of sides, but let there be a set minimum space between corners, and perhaps a maximum angle. Make every angle the same.

a diagram of a hexagonal house, with each side a different length from the others

By playing around with the base pieces, we see that it’s possible to make all sorts of shapes with the same angles. This is loosely a hexagonal house. I might call this a Scalene Hexagon. The corners aren’t as harsh as in square houses, but there’s still space on the shortest for a couch or something.

The walls inside could follow this same scheme, so that the house is full of hexagons and squares. I’d say we should stay away from triangles.