Re: Ideas for Worlds in post-uploading VR or city structures

Crosby_M (
Fri, 4 Oct 1996 10:04:00 -0400

On Tuesday, October 01, 1996 11:13AM Steve Pruitt wrote:
<the school of architecture at the university of texas/austin was, at
one time, very active in designing virtual spaces. michael benedikt was
the principle investigator.>

Benedikt edited a 1991 book from MIT Press called _Cyberspace: First
Steps_ (in which Steve Pruitt, BTW, coauthored an article on virtual

Benedikt's article in the book offered some architectural principles for
navigating among data objects in cyberspace, discussing extrinsic
(location) dimensions, intrinsic (characteristic) dimensions, and how to
transpose these.

Benedikt proposed seven principles for cyberspace design [These are a
cut & paste of his words]:
(1) The Principle of Exclusion (PE): two things cannot be in the same
place at the same time.
(2) The Principle of Maximal Exclusion (PME): always choose as extrinsic
dimensions those that minimize violations of PE.
(3) The Principle of Indifference (PI): the felt realness of any world
depends on the degree of its indifference to the presence of a
particular user and resistance to his desires.
(4) The Principle of Scale (PS): the maximum visible-space velocity of
user motion [across extrinsic dimensions] is an inverse monotonic
function of the complexity of the visible world/dataspace.
(5) The Principle of Transit (PT): travel between two points should
occur through all intervening points and should incur costs proportional
to the distance.
(6) The Principle of Personal Visibility (PPV): individual users should
be visible, in some non-trivial form, at all times to all other users in
the vicinity but may choose which users they wish to see.
(7) The Principle of Commonality (PC): virtual places should be
objective, in a circumscribed way, for a defined community of users.

Mark Crosby