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Plato’s Theory of Forms stated that the abstract ideas of shapes represent the most accurate reality. Although now very much in doubt they presented a solution to the problem of universals which refers to the question of whether properties exist, and if so, what they are. E.g. seeing the world as fundamentally about its basic forms is a way of explaining it.
Shape in math is concerned with the form of an object e.g. how it is laid out in space.
Examples of Shapes
- Common two dimensional (2D) shapes are: Circles, squares, triangles, etc
- Common three dimensional (3D) shapes are: Spheres, cubes, pyramids, etc
The Importance of Shapes for Design
Shapes provide structures for creating new things.
Properties of Shapes
- They fit together in particular ways
- Particular shapes work in particular ways – e.g. a long thin hydrodynamic speed boat hull or a round ball.
- Shapes behave according to the laws of physics.
- There are interesting shapes such as http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tesseract.
Feature image from http://www.georgehart.com/virtual-polyhedra/figs/jamnitzer-great-dodec.jpg