Received 28 honorary degrees in art, sciences, engineering, and humanities
Received the U.S. Medal of Freedom in 1981
" A true renaissance man and one of the greatest minds of our times, Richard Buckminster Fuller's contribution as a geometrician, educator, and architect-designer are the benchmarks of accomplishment in their fields. Among his most notable inventions and discoveries are synergetic geometry, geodesic structures, and tensegrity structures. Mr. Fuller reminds us all that America is a place of pioneers, haven for innovation and the free expression of ideas". Buckminster Fuller's Medal of Freedom citation, received from President Reagan in 1981 reads as follows:
Definition: “ The principle of synergetic advantage states that macro-to-micro does not equal micro-to-macro. Synergetic advantage is only to be effected by macro-to-micro procedure. Synergetic advantage procedures are irreversible. Micro-to-macro procedures are inherently frustrated.”
Systems “ A system is the first subdivision of Universe into a conceivable entity separating all that is nonsimultaneously and geometrically outside the system, ergo irrelevant, from all that is nonsimultaneously and geometrically inside and irrelevant to the system” Buckminster Fuller. Synergetics
A tetrahedron is a triangularly faceted polyhedron of four faces.
It is unique as a system, for it is the minimum and simplest structural system in Universe.
Tetrahedra can be experimentally demonstrated to be the optimally economic, most comprehensive structurally integrated systems in Universe.
Laws of Form [A] universe comes into being when a space is severed or taken apart. The skin of a living organism cuts off an outside from an inside. So does the circumference of a circle in a plane. By tracing the way we represent such a severance, we can begin to reconstruct, with an accuracy and coverage that appear almost uncanny, the basic forms underlying linguistic, mathematical, physical, and biological science, and can begin to see how the familiar laws of our own experience follow inexorably from the original act of severance. The act is itself already remembered, even if unconsciously, as our first attempt to distinguish different things in a world where, in the first place, the boundaries can be drawn anywhere we please. G. Spencer Brown
Nature’s Tensegrity Design Strategy Scientific American January 1998
Structural Synergy + = Spheres have largest volume-to-surface ratio but are easily deformed by gravity and other forces Tetrahedra have smallest volume-to-surface ration, but are structurally rigid Geodesic Dome: Maximum space enclosure/structural integrity
The only flat map of the entire surface of the Earth that reveals our planet as it really is - an island in one ocean without any visible distortion of the relative shapes and sizes of the land areas, and without splitting any continents.
Dy namic + max imum + tens ion = Dymaxion . Creating ever more life support using less and less resources By using the Dymaxion Map in combination with the enormous database resources and computer graphics available today, it is now highly feasible to accurately and clearly display the inventory of world resources, trends and needs in multiple dimensions
“Call Me Trimtab” “ Something hit me very hard once, thinking about what one little man could do. Think of the Queen Mary—the whole ship goes by and then comes the rudder. And there’s a tiny thing on the edge of the rudder called a trim-tab. It’s a miniature rudder. Just moving that little trim-tab builds a low pressure that pulls the rudder around. Takes almost no effort at all. So I said that the little individual can be a trim-tab. Society thinks it’s going right by you, that it’s left you altogether. But if you’re doing dynamic things mentally, the fact is that you can just put your foot out like that and the whole big ship of state is going to go. So I said, “Call me Trimtab.” -Excerpted from R. Buckminster Fuller tape transcript for Barry Farrell for Playboy interview, 2/1972.
Using generalized principles to determine the set of actions which can be taken to change the course of a larger system.
Synergetics “ Synergetics, the comprehensive geometry I have systematized, unlike all other systems of geometry, incorporates both the physical and the metaphysical. The metaphysical involves that which can be experienced but is independent of size and is weightless and energyless, i.e. qualitative rather than quantitative.” R. Buckminster Fuller
4-Dimensional Coordinate System Vector Equilibrium x y z Cartesian Coordinates
Radiation and Gravity Disintegrative radiation and integrative gravity in symbiosis describe the elusive object of the quest for a “unified field.”