A tale of Three (Capital A) Architects

Yesterday I wrote this other post. You might want to read it first. But you don’t need to. In fact your ignorance of that discussion (amazing comments by the way), might help answer the riddle below.

A tale of Three (Capital A) Architects

Three Architects are walking down a road. They have just been asked by the Wealthiest Man in the Land to design the Greatest Building Ever. Each is lost in thought, contemplating the most important question.

The first asks himself “How could it be built?”

The second asks himself “Why will it be built?”

The third asks himself “What should be built?”

A week later they return to the Wealthiest Man in the Land and introduce themselves.

The first says “I am the Builder-Architect. I will give you a Building of the Greatest detail Ever.”

The second says “I am the Philosopher-Architect. I will uncover the secrets that make your Building the Greatest Ever.”

The third says “I am the (fill in the blank with one word)-Architect. Here is the design for the Greatest Building Ever.”


What is that third architect? All three answers are right. All three answers are valid. All three answers are a legitimate starting point for design. All three answers get to the core of what we each contribute to the profession. The sickness and rot within our profession is when the balance of the three is out of alignment.

What is that third one?

I don’t know. I but I need to find out.


Update 03/14/13 — I found my answer.


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  1. Atonio Tort March 1, 2013
    • Jared Banks March 1, 2013
  2. Jay Zallan March 2, 2013
  3. Larry Fredlund March 2, 2013
  4. Larry Fredlund March 2, 2013
  5. Pingback: What kind of Architect are you? » Shoegnome November 12, 2013
  6. Lena June 22, 2015
    • Jared Banks June 22, 2015

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