- Cover Type: Hard Cover with 288 pages
- Published by: Oxford University Press, USA
- Edition: 3rd Edition September 1, 2005
- Written in: English
- ISBN 10 Number: 019516198X
- ISBN 13 Number: 978-0195161984
1 x 8.6 x 11.1 inches
- Weighs: 2.6 pounds
- Average Customer Review:
4.8 out of 5 stars See all reviews 13 customer reviews
With its homespun drawings and offerings of architectural wisdom for lay readers, this book is like a Whole Earth Catalog building course. In this update of his 1980 edition, however, Allen (architecture, Yale) manages to explain with brevity and common sense "how buildings work." In the opening pages, he places the Earth in the solar system and defines our place on the planet. He then offers analyses of the effects of sun, wind, and cold on building design and location. By focusing primarily on housing, Allen lets readers clearly understand everything from lighting, comfort, and quiet to the basics of making a sturdy structure. He offers occasional but well-placed examples of non-Western design as well. And the illustrations, which look like 1970s instructions for macrame, somehow work. Recommended for general audiences.?David Bryant, New Canaan P.L., Conn.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
HOW BUILDINGS WORK is just a great book, even more interesting than Macaulay's THE WAY THINGS WORK. Buildings are everywhere, and most everyone uses buildings of various kinds for various purposes. Yet how a building works is often a mystery. In this way, I think buildings are much like computers; most people who use them have no clue about the inner workings of them. Edward Allen takes us through the functions of a building without going into traditional architectural theory. This book is more concerned with the needs that buildings must fulfill, and how we can fulfull them. He discusses water, waste, heat, ventilation, lighting, accoustics, energy, structure, and more, first by explaining each particular concept, and then by examining how problems can be solved with the knowledge of those concepts. While this isn't a book on theory, neither is it a wholly practical book. That is, it won't equip you with the skills to go and build a house. But it will open your eyes to the various elements of buildings and building construction and you may think "Aha!" the next time you look at a building and observe a strange structural or design detail. You don't have to be an architecture freak to enjoy the book either. You just need to be curious.