As Fuller saw it, a fundamental principle of industrialization was that it was,

"based upon constantly improving performance of production, depended on improving technology and produced items that gave increasingly improved and measurable performance." (Reader, p.161)

He explicitly applied this industrial principle to architecture, noting in Nine Chains, p.41, that,

"in architecture, form is a noun; in industry, form is a verb."

This is to say that design and production are conceived dynamically, in terms of energy and materials, and the materials themselves are conceived as substances which perform, rather than as just existing. Hence Fuller's interest in alloys, and his concern with the weight of buildings.

Performance is discussed in the essay "Designing A New Industry" in the Reader.

There is a sense in which this concept can be overemphasized to the detriment of comprehensive design: see Efficiency.



Paul Taylor 2001