The caad.designtoproduction research group at The Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) used VectorScript®, VectorWorks’ built-in scripting language, which automates drafting and modeling tasks, to help Instant Architects from Zurich design and produce the stage for the traveling exhibit Inventioneering Architecture. The exhibit will open January 20, 2006, at Boston’s Logan Airport.

The interactive exhibit’s stage is a platform that resembles an abstract cross-section of the Swiss Alps. It was designed to allow visitors to stroll the platform while viewing architectural models and visuals on overhead screens and display panels. The exhibition will give visitors a physical and intellectual opportunity to experience the differences between Swiss architecture pedagogy and American architecture teaching methods.

To develop this platform, a NURBS surface was translated into the geometry for 1,000 individually shaped rafters, which formed a doubly curved surface of 1,300 sq.ft., measuring 130’ long by 10’ wide with varying heights up to 5’.

“VectorScript allows for a tight integration of programming, manual drawing and editing, which is especially important in complex projects such as this,” says Christoph Schindler, architect and co-founder of caad.designtoproduction. “And due to these capabilities, we were able to generate the steering code for the CNC-router that produced the rafters directly within the CAD system, effectively closing the gap between design and production.”

Read more about this project and caad.designtoproduction’s other innovative work with world-renowned architects such as Daniel Libeskind in the case study “VectorWorks Brings Daniel Libeskind’s Futuropolis to Life” at

Inventioneering Architecture debuted in San Francisco and opens at Boston’s Logan Airport January 20, 2006. It will remain in Boston until March 31, 2006, then travel to Shanghai, DuIbai, and Zurich.