Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Mughal Architecture

The Mughal architecture website provides a good overview of the architecture of the monuments of Agra, Fatehpur Sikri, Taj Mahal, Delhi, Ajmer, and other historical sites in India and Lahore in Pakistan. It includes digital images, accompanying descriptions and a wide range of architectural drawings showing the location of monuments, together with elevations and cross sections.
Link: http://www.mughalarchitecture.in/home/
Access: Free

Monday, February 25, 2008

Rare Architectural Books Digitised

Heidelberg University is at the forefront of European efforts to digitise and make freely available early rare and precious architectural books on the internet. Its already impressive digital collection has been expanded with the addition of seven further titles including work by Scamozzi and Vitruvius.
Link: http://tinyurl.com/2j8bs3
Access: Free

Friday, February 22, 2008

Design and Detailing for Airtightness

This is the second in a series of guides produced by the Scottish Ecological Design Association (SEDA) with the aim of encouraging sustainable construction. It examines the context and principles of designing for airtightness, and provides five typical construction details together with alternatives which optimise the potential for each detail to exploit airtightness techniques. Full explanations and costs are given.
Link: http://www.seda2.org/dfa
Access: Free

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Library Secures Funding for InfosmART: Information Skills Online

The Library has recently successfully bid for funds from the GSA Innovation in Learning and Teaching Fund for our project InfosmART: Information Skills Online.

InfosmART will provide a portfolio of online interactive modules in information and research skills for the GSA learning, teaching and research communities. It will teach learners how to develop and improve their individual research and information handling skills through a 3-step programme covering:

  • How to develop effective search strategies for information in a wide variety of media both online and through specialist databases
  • How to evaluate information for accuracy, relevance, currency, breadth, authority and other criteria
  • How to cite and reference information correctly and avoid plagiarism
The modules will encourage self-directed learning and will feature interactive elements such as online tests that enable learners to benchmark their information skills and check what they have learnt from the module.
Look out for further news on this exciting project over the coming months.

Plan de Rome

Continuing the theme of virtual cities, a tremendous resource from the University of Caen has been made available online. A large plaster model of fourth century Rome has been used as the basis for a virtual three-dimensional model of the ancient city which includes interactive maps, images and video clips of individual buildings. Particular building types can be compared, and there is a scholarly bibliography for each individual building and geographical area.
Link: http://www.unicaen.fr/rome/index.php
Access: Free

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


Given the interest in visualisation technologies, it's intriguing to see Greenpeace's 'Efficiencity', a web-based 'multimedia-packed, animation-filled interactive town' which seeks to explain how a fictional community can use decentralised and alternative energy sources. It includes video case studies, animations and slideshows that explain exactly how various clean and efficient energy systems such as micro-hydro, wind, and energy from waste work in practice and can be incorprated into particular building types.
Link: http://tinyurl.com/23dwub
Access: Free

The Online Library of Civil & Environmental Engineering

This freely-available web directory includes high quality image galleries, book reviews, e-books and technical drawings in the field of civil, structural and environmental engineering. Registration, which is free, is required in order to access some of the content.
Link: http://www.olcivil.com/Site/index.php
Access: Free

Monday, February 18, 2008


Soundcities is an AHRC-funded open source database of city sounds from around the world that can be listened to, used in performances on laptops, or played on mobiles via wireless networks. Currently, sounds are available for some 25 cities in Europe, the Americas and the Far East, and the database also contains a sophisticated online generative audio mixer to enable new compositions to be created from sounds in the database.
Access: Free

Friday, February 15, 2008

Design and Detailing for Deconstruction

One of our students has helpfully alerted me to this Scottish Ecological Design Association (SEDA) website which gives guidance on specific detailing for the deconstruction of buildings. This issue is becoming increasingly important in the light of moves to reduce construction waste and improve construction efficiency. The guide, which can be freely downloaded, examines the context and principles of designing for deconstruction, and presents five typical construction details together with alternatives which optimise the potential for each detail to exploit deconstruction and waste reduction techniques, along with explanations and costs.
Link: http://www.seda2.org/dfd/

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

'The Lives of the British Architects...' online

The Questia website of online scholarly content has made freely available E. Beresford Chancellor's 'The lives of the British architects from William of Wykeham to Sir William Chambers' online. Published in 1909, the book includes biographies of leading figures from the 14th to 18th centuries such as Inigo Jones, Batty Langley, Nicholas Hawksmoor, John Vanbrugh and Sir Christopher Wren, together with images and plans of their work.
Link: http://www.questia.com/
Access: Free

Basil Spence in Glasgow

Those of you who enjoyed the Basil Spence exhibition in Edinburgh, or who missed it altogether, may be interested in the mini touring exhibition which is currently at Glasgow's Mitchell Library until March 2nd 2008. In addition to material from the Sir Basil Spence Archive, this free exhibition draws on people's memories of life in the architect's Queen Elizabeth Square tower blocks in the city's Gorbals. Copies of the catalogue of the main Edinburgh exhibition are available to borrow from GSA Library.
Link: http://tinyurl.com/ypblmb
Access: Free

New! Online Access to Nine Key Journals

We've just activated online access to nine of our key journals, enabling you to access these titles remotely, in addition to the print versions in the Library. The journals, which include three core architectural ones are:

Digital Creativity
History of Photography
International Journal of Art Therapy
Journal of Architecture
Third Text
Urban Studies
Visual Studies
Women: a Cultural Review

Access to this content is now available via the InformaWorld platform, and requires an Athens account both on- and off-campus.

Link: http://www.informaworld.com/
Access: Athens

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

Journals Survey

We are currently seeking feedback on the use of our journals collection and on our current subscriptions.
Tally sheets have been attached to the front covers of all current issues is our collection. If you find yourself using a particular journal in the Library, please take time to mark these tally sheets - the information we receive helps us to understand the different demands on our journals and to plan their future development.