A design that designs itself will create and then incorporate into itself patterns that alter its own aptness.
Over time, a set of features, or individually recognizable distinctions, reveal the characteristic contours -- the antidesign -- of the context in which the set is embedded. The richer the antidesign, the more potential for development in the feature set.
The boundaries defining "thingness" are arbitrary. New form arises as forms from elsewhere flow into (influence) a system to create better fitting correlations to the context.
Only when the open boundaries are taken into account does the emergence of new form make sense. Emergence occurs when form connects across boundaries.
A self-designing design is exceptionally open and sensitive. At the same time, the design retains at least some of the patterns it has previously incorporated.
The interplay of openness and retention is significant.
Michael Webb, 2001
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