Artificial Intelligence for Engineering Design, Analysis and Manufacturing

Special Issue: Call For Papers

AIEDAM Special Issue, August 2006, Vol. 20, No. 3

Understanding, Representing and Reasoning about Style

Edited by: Claudia M. Eckert & Ellen Yi-Luen Do


This special issue of AIEDAM will be devoted to papers concerned with Understanding, Representing and Reasoning about Style.

Design of all disciplines involves the resolution of both form and function. Many design artifacts exhibit visible qualities and features that we call 'style'. While we can often recognize a style easily, it can be difficult to define exactly what elements of the design contribute to the style. Artifacts often don't have only a single style, but display the style of an area, a convention of practice, a manufacturer, a designer and even a particular customer. We think of style as being persistent over a series of objects and recognize it through the similarity of these artifacts. Style is a relationship between objects, but it influences how objects are understood and used: i.e., relationships between objects and people.

Cultural and art historians, as well as design theoreticians, have studied style from their different disciplinary perspectives. However, we know little that is detailed and concrete about how style is generated, deployed or appreciated. This understanding is necessary for incorporating style into intelligent computer applications. In this special issue we are seeking to put together contributions that allow us to understand what style is, how it works, how it can be supported and how it can be regenerated.

Specifically, we are asking the following questions:

    What constitutes a style? What are the mechanisms through which style is generated, shared and appreciated? What does style in different disciplines have in common? Are rules and constraints part of the definition of style? Can the practices used to analyze and generate style in one design domain be applicable in a different field? Can we use systematic approaches and methodologies to describe, understand and generate style? What kinds of AI techniques are needed to represent and reason about a style? Can styles be defined in functional terms as well as structural terms? How is style recognized and how does the notion of style influence the process and production of design artifacts? What is the relationship between style and context? Can a description of style be created automatically from one or a set of artifacts? Where do the personal influences on style and style perception come from? How important is style compared to other attributes of a product as a success factor? What is the function of style? Is style a meaningful concept beyond the visual domains? What kind of computational tools have been built to support engineering design, analysis and manufacturing concerning style?

We are interested in how this understanding of style can enhance the design, analysis or manufacturing of engineering artifacts.

We particularly welcome papers on the topics listed below from all areas of design:

  • cognitive and computational approaches to understanding design style;
  • computational tools that interpret styles, and infer design intentions;
  • generative design systems that represent or reason about style;
  • theories and procedures to analyze or generate style for design artifacts;
  • representation methods for helping human designers understand the nature of style;
  • reasoning mechanisms for generating style in engineering design and manufacturing.

All submissions will be anonymously reviewed by at least three reviewers. The selection for publication would be made on the basis of these reviews.

Further details about registration of interest, submission, etc, can be found at the Special Issue information page:

Information about the format and style required for AIEDAM papers can be found at

However, note that all submissions for special issues go to the Guest Editors, and not to the Editor in Chief.

Important dates:

    Intend to submit (with Title): As soon as possible Submission deadline for full papers: 1 July 2005 *** Reviews due: 16 September 2005 Notification and reviews to authors: 9 October 2005 Revised version submission deadline: 1 December 2005 Final version submission deadline: 7 March 2006

Guest editors:

Please direct all enquiries and submissions to the guest editors:

Dr. Claudia M. Eckert
The University of Cambridge,
Department of Engineering,
Trumpington Street, Cambridge, CB2 1PZ
Email: cme26 @

Dr. Ellen Yi-Luen Do
Computational Design Laboratory
CoDe Lab, School of Architecture
Carnegie Mellon University
5000 Forbes Ave, 412 Margaret Morrison Hall
Pittsburgh, PA 15217 - 3890
Email: ellendo @

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Cambridge University Press
Wed, 3 Aug 2005 17:43:28