On the representation and generation of loosely-packed arrangements of rectangles

Abstract: "Several computer programs that enumerate rectangular dissections as solutions to certain layout problems have established a distinct paradigm for dealing with the crucial theoretical issues involved. The present paper suggests an extension of the paradigm to include 'loosely-packed' arrangements of 'rectangles', which are of wider applicability in an architectural context. The paper introduces orthogonal structures to represent arrangements and establishes the conditions of well-formedness for these structures. It presents a grammar to enumerate orthogonal structures and suggests that best use is made of the grammar if it is incorporated into a generative expert system, able to serve as a vehicle to discover, encode and utilize a broad range of constraints and criteria in the generation of layout alternatives."