Diversity and Variation in China's Yao Ancient Wood Frame Structures Through Genetic Algorithms

Filipe Afonso, Kirill de Lancastre Jedenov, Pedro Gomes Januário, Paulo Almeida

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This study, focusing on the China’s Yao minority community, investigates the feasibility to create a generative computational method to replicate the diversity of the existing Yao traditional wood buildings, addressing the critical issues currently facing computational design methods, in the attempt to adapt genetic-generative algorithms to the study of local ancient architecture. The project develops a computational tool to generate a network of three-dimensional prototypes, or building structures, derived from traditional wood frame village houses. It studies possible housing structures that illustrate some of the key working methods available in digital systems such as ‘generating’ and ‘compositing’ taking as a starting point computational strategies oriented towards geometry and where a set of local variables play a decisive role: available local technologies, use of raw materials, and the dimensioning of timber components based on data collected from Yao architecture.
Original languageEnglish
Article number99
Pages (from-to)1-19
Number of pages19
JournalInternational Journal of Creative Interfaces and Computer Graphics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2022


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