Interior spaces result as an organization of spatial configurations for specific conditions of environment, beliefs and group behaviour dynamics. However, for circumstantial reasons, it is not always feasible to achieve a perfect set in a given space, for the available technology and in required time. To overcome such deficiencies Interior spaces are endowed with make-believe inputs or effects.


The ‘make-believe’ is an economical substitute for the original or hypothetical entity (time, extent, money, effort). The ‘make-believe’ also offers an exciting tool for creation of new experiences.


We strongly associate specific experiences with entities like materials, technologies, spatial scaling such as size, proportions, texture, colour, illumination, frequency and schedules of occurrence etc. or temporal skewing like enhancing or delaying the event. However, for make-believe, such experiences are created by substituting the nominal entities with different materials and technologies, spatial scaling or time skewing. When the predictable effects fail to arrive in the nominal context, or arrive in spite of a different situation a delusion occurs. Make-believe effects are almost magical or ethereal, and defy logic or reason.


For example, our nominal experience tells us that dark spaces are cooler and quieter, and conversely bright spaces are noisier and warmer, but such expectations are sought to be replaced in maze and adventure tunnels of children parks. Night clubs are darker but noisier and prayer areas are brighter and yet quieter.


We are generally conditioned by predictable effects of the traditional or known materials. However, when we discover that any peculiar configuration or additional input creates an experience that is different from the one that is predictable, and we get a tool for a make-believe effect.


Mirrors play a very important role in creation of duplicate spaces. We are conditioned by the fact that load-bearing walls are opaque, so a glass wall seems different. Till recently transparent material like glass was flat and stiff plate, but plastics now allow two way curvatures, and can also be flexible. Rooms other than the nominal square or rectangular shape provide an unusual experience. Echoes and reverberation of sound provide predictable space dimensions, but different perception gives unusual experience of the space. Lights and shadows mould the visible space. Ionized air endows a garden like freshness in an otherwise stifled space. Indian epic Maha-Bharat mentions of a Laksha Griha (literally a house of Lac or wax), a place where solid looking floors were water surfaces, and water surfaces were real floors.


A society by a tacit understanding accepts certain words, signs metaphors, and indications as allowable and non allowable actions (warnings, danger, caution, etc.). When such commonly acceptable norms are displayed, they function almost like a real barricade. Signs like Caution, Danger, ‘Do not trespass’, ‘keep off the grass’, etc. operate as barriers. Metaphysical barricades are indicative and unreal, or make-believe. Make-believe barriers exploit the instinctive associations and conditioning of physiological and mental faculties.


In real life we do use the stage like make-believe and indicative effects. We use these to create situations that are called ‘dramatic or melodramatic’. Discotheques, Night Clubs, Amusement Parks, etc., are places where such make-believe effects are extensively exploited.






Pole Ahmedabad

An Interior space is bounded and a well-defined envelope. Yet with the environmental variations outside, it is an ever-changing enigma. The inhabitants have to develop a dynamic approach to sustain their occupation of the space and continue the inhabitation. The approach to accommodate can be categorized in Four layers.


1 Very minor changes are accommodated at personal and passive level, i.e. recasting of the lifestyle, body posturing, metabolic activity, rescheduling, etc.

2 At micro level the changes are absorbed by activities like repositioning of the furniture and facilities, establishing improved amenities, etc.

3 At macro level the changes are assimilated in terms of additions, alterations, renovations, etc. in the built form.

4 At a radical level the changes may force recasting of the group-dynamics (treaties, friendship, divorce, etc.), or migration to new locations.


The accommodation of environmental changes delays and disturbs the inhabitation but always equips one with better skills and greater efficiencies. Communities that follow self-help building practices follow an inherited regimen that is well set and fail-safe in the community. The community here ensures the consistency of the locality and social behaviour. This contrasts with inhabitation attempts by migrants who at one end have no vernacular heritage to rely on, and at the other extreme are trying to establish their ‘footprint’ into a new setting.

A professional interior designer forms an interior space, incorporating all the conceivable variables, so as to make it as widely relevant (and also static) as possible. Designers also endeavour to instill certain ‘life style’ into the inhabitants -often called a design statement. Such professionally designed interiors, however do not escape the effects of changing environment. In spite of the best of intentions and efforts very often the user fails to behave as perceived, or responds ambiguously to the interior space. Interior space behaviour remains incredulous.

In public housing a standard design is exploited differently by various families. The same modular offices, cabins or hotel rooms arouse different feelings. Personalization of interior space is a continuing activity of the user. Long used or familiar spaces, seem very secure and comfortable with personalization. Whereas in new spaces, a user seeks familiarity of form, utilities, equipments, furniture, furnishings, environment, and presence of known participants or co-habitants.

An Interior space is designed by professional designer for a certain life style (behaviour standards). The primary intention is to create a setting that inculcates a specific response. The user may or need not be aware of such intentions. Interior spaces are also devised to alienate users from the expected set of things. Such diversions are designed to excite, to register the change (end of old and arrival of new), and also to destabilize the users.



Postby Gautam Shah (1- dt. 22/05/2014)


Workplace Craft Profession Work Employment

For an Employer a potential employee has a specific and inherent capacity to perform. Employers believe that capacity to perform is to be gained at a specific cost for future efficiency. Performance capacity of employees directly makes up for the profitability of the organization.


Performance is a product of learning capacity. It is measured by ability to recognize a stimulus or signals, understand them and to respond to them in the appropriate manner. The speed and quality of response depend on the type of motivation one may carry.

Employers hire people on the basis of factors such as individual ability, personality traits, capacity of effort input (physical strength), perception of the role, motivation, learning capacity, etc.


Employment is the state of relationship between an Employer and Employees. One without the other cannot be perceived. Both must derive appropriate gain out of it. Both must continuously prove themselves worthy of their roles. These proofs must not only occur at regular intervals, but sometimes as a surprise too.


Employees of the organization have different perception. They equate or relate the performance in terms of compensation and role promotion. When a person perceives these, he is well motivated, and may show increased learning capacity.

Employee Shanghai Chinese Restaurant Employer

When an employee finds that when there are insufficient motivation, compensation, recognition and promotion in an organization their performance remains static. They may even plan a change of a job. For a person who seeks a fresh position, it is time to take advantage of the real and abstract gains of the past, such as experience, personal contacts, specialized knowledge etc. These can now be converted into materialistic things. Such a plan, however, is related to the age of the employee.

Man Start Start Up Entrepreneur Career

A person comparatively young in age must move around seeking various jobs to experience the mechanics of employment. A person not so young will have to select between reduced appreciation of his or her role and security of reasonable compensation, or enhanced appreciation and uncertain compensation.

Connectedness Partnership Personal Businessmen

Workplace Imac Teamwork Business Computer

Beyond a certain level of age, re-employment chances begin to tapper off. An aged person, though well experienced, has reduced learning capability, reduced reorientation faculties, less motivation, less migration capacity and re-establishment willingness. An aged person though well experienced, may have out-dated knowledge base. An organization looking for consolidation of their business may promote a person from within their cadre, rather then hire someone who will takes time to attune to their work-style.


Ideal age for job change is less than 32 years. At these age a person is ready to relocate, take a challenging position, is highly motivated and has reasonably fresh knowledge base. Between the age of 32 and 45 the chances of re-employment are less favourable. One needs to be extra ordinary in leadership qualities, daring and willingness to align with new work culture. Post 45 years of age chances of job change are very rare, unless one has positioned own-self worthy of invitation to join as associate or consultant. The age level of 32 or 35 is considered ideal to start a new venture of own.

When, an employee leaves an employer the organization loses an asset, accumulated mass of knowledge and experience, personalized contacts, a person with proven mode of communication, secrets, patent procedures and formulas etc.

Climbing Security Equipment Rope Safety Rappelling

When an employer wishes to remove an employee, there are many legal hurdles, some are convertible into monetary terms. Instead of wasting efforts to surmount such hurdles, employers try to assign a different role, retrain, relocate, assign different tasks, provide punishments, curtail other advantages, to their employees.

Job Professions Work Figures Fun Career Funny




Post    by Gautam Shah



Looking out of Temple Door > Pixabay image by fr_golay

In all climates, geographic locations and cultures, a door is a major, preferred and often the only source of illumination, compared to a window or other openings. The degree of shutter being opened or closed provides easiest control over both the level and direction of illumination. Besides this, the door shutters, in the form of lattice, glazing, louvres, windowing, etc., provide more and easily maneuverable options for illumination control. The form and scale of the door such as tall, wide, large, small, flush or deep set, etc. offer other means of administering the illumination.


Control of illumination through a door is availed of:

1 by adjusting the size and form of the gap on opening the door shutter,

2 by providing lattice or glazing within the main shutter or by providing additional shutters for such options,

3 by increasing or decreasing the depth of the door and by shaping the sides of the opening (such as chamfer corners or splaying),

4 by defining the exterior and interior surroundings and base level near the door (the colour, texture, angle and distance of near by elements)

5 by selecting the orientation of the door opening,

6 by scheduling and siting of appropriate activities in or out of the door surroundings.



Flickr Image by David Masters

External Door

An external door of an enclosed space is very relevant for illumination and ventilation. The illumination is substantially determined by the Sky Component or SC, which checks the light reflected from the sky directly into a room. Any overhang or side projection reduces the sky component. The other major factor is the Externally Reflected Component or ERC, which depends on the quality of surface (texture), colour and reflectivity of the foreground of a door and other side areas (such as side walls). The third important factor is the Internally Reflected Component or IRC. It consists of light reflected from the internal surfaces of the room. Adjustment of IRC is very helpful in controlling the glare through the open door (Glare is the high difference of light between the opening and its surrounding surfaces).


Doors at the back of INFOSYS Institute, Mysore, India > Wikipedia image by Prateek Karandikar

The Internal Door is not very useful for illumination, unless the other side of the interior door (of room, passage, etc.) can contribute some reflected illumination. Such ‘borrowed’ illumination may be sufficient for ‘passive’ activities or ‘less-used’ areas like stairs, passageways, etc. However, in very warm climates and coastal areas like the Mediterranean or Kerala, where external brightness is very high, an external door brings in radiant heat along with light. This is controlled by placing doors in verandahs or with deep awnings. Doors with louvres are widely used in Mediterranean climates to reduce the brightness and glare. Deep-set doors are also created by placing doors on the inner edge of a thick wall (where possible) or by creating deep portals.

Illumination has a direct bearing on the door orientation. The main doors of early Egyptian buildings were East facing and the Sun god was revered. The East and West have been prime directions for illumination in many historic places of worship. With the ascent of the clear storey openings or entire glass curtain walls the importance of a door as the chief illumination element has reduced.

Illumination and the size of a door have a direct relationship. A taller door is more effective then a wider door in illuminating deep interiors. Monumental buildings have tall doors not just for architectural grandeur but its was the upper section of a tall door provided the deep illumination during a crowded ceremonial function. In Egyptian temples the upper section of the door was supposed to bring in the Sun god with the first rays of rising sun. The tall door was unmanageable for shutter mechanisms and useless as a passage. The upper section was either left without a shutter or latticed to form a ‘transom’. It was more practicable to leave a transom or a rose window than load a wall over the door lintel.

The illumination through a door has also been enhanced by providing side lites or side-lights and within the door lattices. Panel doors of Greek buildings were partly latticed in the upper sections, or had additional latticed shutters. Side lights or side windows increase the perceptive width of the opening, decrease the size of the shutter and reduce the structural span of the lintel.

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Post by Gautam Shah

An Interior Space has finite volume, but with very average level of exchange with outside environment. Interior spaces can support a moderate level of human occupation and of certain intensity but for fixed duration. In excessively polluted localities it cannot offer the comfort and health safety beyond a limited period.

Quality of outdoor air determines the quality of Indoor air

Outside air is always fresher due to its infinite volume, air currents, solar radiation and other environmental processes of nature. Though external air in highly polluted surroundings could be inimical, during specific periods. For buildings, at micro climate level, the exterior air may be contaminated on specific sides and periods of the day.


Indoor air quality in buildings can be improved, by control at the source, by filtration techniques, and by passive and active means of ventilation to dilute contaminants. Inadequate exchange (ventilation) can increase indoor pollution level by not bringing in enough and quality outdoor air to dilute the pollutants in indoor air. High temperature, humidity levels and to some extent air movements also increase concentrations of some pollutants.


To refresh the interior environment, one needs passive and benign interaction with the exteriors. The benign interaction could be scheduled in terms of time, such as during periods when outside environment is better, or facilitating the exchange on faces that are less vulnerable to exterior fouling, such as off the road sides, terraces, etc.


Contamination of Interior Spaces is not related to occupancy, but it may continue in dormant periods also. Many of the contaminants evolve from building’s materials, furniture, furnishings, cleaning and maintenance products, and as after effects of processes (such condensation of vapours, deposition of airborne particles, bacterial growth, etc.). The contaminants include unwanted gases, excess moisture, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), odours, particulate matters, etc.

Poor indoor air quality can cause or contribute to the development of infections, lung cancer, and chronic lung diseases such as asthma. In addition, it can cause headaches, dry eyes, nasal congestion, nausea and fatigue. People, who already have lung disease are at greater risk.

Formaldehyde is a carcinogenic substance and also causes coughing, eye, nose, and throat irritation, skin rashes, headaches, and dizziness. It is a very common chemical group found in many substances such as adhesives, paints, dyes, processed and printed fabrics, carpets, upholstery, particle board, and plywoods. Formaldehyde continues to get released in the air. Similarly many types potentially harmful chemicals are emitted by household cleaning agents, personal care products, pesticides, paints, hobby products, and solvents. Such chemicals can cause dizziness, nausea, allergic reactions, eye, skin and respiratory-tract irritation.


Some simple strategies to improve Quality of Indoor Air

1 Design wise isolate areas of high contamination by controlled partitioning system from benign areas.

2 Recognize the role of cracks and crevices for micro ventilation in buildings of warm climates, compared with a tightly sealed entity designed to avoid heat loss in buildings of colder climates.

3 Schedule activities and locate processes in areas where passive exchange with the outdoors is available.

4 Interior Design must include products and processes with least or zero VOC emissions.

5 Use cleaning and maintenance products that emit low or zero VOCs.

6 Plan for Air Moisture Control by way of ventilation, diffusion and scrubbing.



Post -by Gautam Shah



Estimating methods for interior jobs largely derive from the Architectural profession, which in turn have originated from Civil Engineering. However, gradually distinct methods for estimating interior jobs are evolving. Civil structures are large entities but made from few basic raw materials, compared with Architectural projects which consist of more raw materials and are complex. Civil and Architectural components as produced on the site are comparatively simplistic and require services of one or few contractors. Architectural components are generalized, traditional, and are being used for ages. Complex architectural systems are procured in full or partially ready state at workshops.


However, Interior jobs are composed of many but rarely recurring components. These are produced from many different materials. Complex interior systems composed or assembled on the site, are very intricate and require services of several contractors, craftspeople, etc. Interior components are custom made or improvised on a situation to situation basis. In interior jobs due to fewer occurrences, or total absence of standardized components, modules of measurements and modes of measurements are not very useful. Rate analysis and other systems for determining an appropriate market rate per item/ sub item / task are not suitable.


Civil structures and Architectural buildings are executed by third party contractors and, so require detailed estimates. However, in many design fields including Interiors, Design+Build or design and execute type of job handling is very common. Design+Build interior jobs are paid per the total cost (design services + cost of execution + profit), so a detailed estimate or item wise cost estimate is not required, except for the in-house judgements.


Interior elements are of many different varieties: paints and polishes, soft furnishings, furniture, machines, electronic systems, hard furnishings, building elements. For accounting purposes (by clients) some of these elements are classified as recurring expenses, while others qualify as asset creating investments. Asset creating investments are written off (discounted) for short or long term depreciation. Clients wish to take maximum benefit through tax planning, and so demand bills to suit the accounting needs. Estimate schedules reflect the grouping of items to this end.







Jobs however complex, are composed of elemental parts and small tasks. The elemental parts and tasks are usually comparable to many others used in different items or situations. Elemental parts, though similar in form and constitution, acquire a unique personality depending on their position in the whole, nature of use, method of installation or erection and time schedule of installation. Often parts of different types are correlated based on external factors like guarantee mechanisms, life span, utility, depreciation, finance, cost, return, energy consumption, waste output, hazards, ecological value, replacement schedules, etc.


It is generally experienced that certain form characteristics, dimensions (widths, depths etc.), etc. of parts and components remain constant. To save labour such constants are defined and only other variables are sought. Modes of measurements generally take care of such definitions.


Quantity estimates generally are compounded-quantities of various measures. An Estimate, to be relevant, needs to be converted into other values (monetary etc.) There could be several levels of conversions before an estimate turns into a relevant statement. Such conversions are carried out by many different agencies, without the author or the originator of the estimate being aware of it, or being informed about it.


Jobs are estimated in many different ways:

with varying Degree of Accuracy

at various Stages of Work

for many Different Reasons


Accuracy of an estimate depends on how well the job has been conceived and detailed. Estimates that cause secondary change elsewhere (item selection or elimination), create liabilities, or have any hazardous consequences, and are prepared with due care.

Estimates are primarily made at two stages of work: Any Estimate prepared at the beginning or during the work are called Budget costing. An Estimate compiled at the Completion stage is called Historic costing.


Budget costings are made to determine the likely cost of execution. It helps in planning of resources, to search options, to check quotations, to control likely cost over runs, to determine the bill amount for a percentage fee, etc. Pre-execution estimates are made with certain parameters (presumptions). When there is a variation in parameters like, the cost of input materials, labour etc., the cost estimates need revisions. Budget cost or pre execution estimates remain very variable. Budget cost, as a document must remain revisable or fluid till the item is executed. It will have very little relevance once the item is born.


Historic costings are made, to determine the actual expenditure incurred. It also helps in assessing the value of absolute addition to the wealth, investigate conditions that caused cost over or under runs, to determine the set-off or depreciation amounts, to fix insurance cover charges, to fix operations or servicing costs, etc. Post execution cost estimates, on the other hand, is made on the basis of accomplished facts, soon after the birth of a product. Historic cost estimates are static documents and have an archival value.


Who makes the Estimates? Budget costing is usually made by the people involved in the design and execution of the project, because they have all the data resources. Historic costing however may also be carried out by third parties or people not necessarily involved with design or execution processes.

Why Estimates are made? Estimates are made for many diverse reasons. Estimates are made for solving problems, making decisions, for highlighting or projecting certain facts, for supporting or confirming facts, for calculating the value addition or deduction, for procuring grants, loans, subsidies, etc. The purpose, which the estimate is going to serve, determines its format and the level of accuracy.