In This Question we discussed how likely bats are to become sapient. Lets assume that they could. They would weigh at most 150 lbs and would look much like flying foxes. Assuming they could evolve sapience, how different would their medieval architecture look like.

  • $\begingroup$ The novel Learning the World by Ken MacLeod actually features alien space bats as some of the main protagonists. It features a chapter where a pair of space-bat protagonists fly to an ancient ruin where previous (medieval) generations had lived. $\endgroup$ – Steve Oct 8 '15 at 1:21
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    $\begingroup$ Well there are a few things you need to consider. Humans are relatively the same, but they ended up building all different kinds of houses and building worldwide based on things like religion, wealth, available resources and of course labor strength/size. There would be no sure way of knowing. Most likely, if they still had the ability to fly they would be devoid of stairs and may just have open floors in the middle or ever climbing walls. Otherwise more details are needed. This cannot be accurately answered in one way. $\endgroup$ – Sunspear25 Oct 8 '15 at 4:47
  • $\begingroup$ I am now curious as to how aircraft would be designed by such a species, which brings me to my question - can I ask said question, or are you planning on asking? $\endgroup$ – JDSweetBeat Oct 8 '15 at 18:59
  • $\begingroup$ Don't forget Neptune's Brood by Charles Stross. Post-humans adaped their form for 0-g living and humorously ended up looking like bats. $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Oct 11 '15 at 5:42

Architecture doesn't solely depend on intellect and sapience.

  • The structure of manus (hand) plays the most important role in constructing something once the plans have been laid out. On the paper and in my mind, I could draw a hundred amazing architectural designs which wouldn't be possible for medieval people to build simply because they did not have the technology. How much complexity of design can your bats' hands handle? How much can their wrists turn? The shoulders? The length of their arms? How much are they hindered due to the attachment of skin membrane to their arms?

  • Another extremely relevant thing is the available raw materials your bats have in their surroundings. Do they have any glue? What is the shape and size of the water stones in their region? Can they manipulate wood with their hands (see above point)? Ropes? If they don't have glue available, how else are they going to keep things together? I hope you aren't expecting them to use nails and hammers ... What is their environment like? Are they living in jungles or caves?

  • What are their requirements for the buildings? Are they going to build residences hanging upside down from ceilings or upright on the floor? The resulting colony would heavily depend on what they want to make after they have decided what they can make.

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  • $\begingroup$ I think you'll find that they build using their feet, which were adapted to grasping. Like a parrot, the ability to perch was harmonious with the ability to pick up and manipulate small objects. $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Oct 11 '15 at 5:40
  • $\begingroup$ The limitations pointed out in the answer about arms apply to their legs too. With a further hindrance that if they use their arms, they can build while hanging upside down from a ceiling, while if using their legs to build, they would have to hang on with their arms or lay down on their backs, both of which would be weird and uncomfortable. $\endgroup$ – Youstay Igo Oct 11 '15 at 9:50
  • $\begingroup$ upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/2/20/… The fingers are used to form the wings, so they are not available for fingers. The lower limbs are adapted for grasping. $\endgroup$ – JDługosz Oct 11 '15 at 22:47
  • $\begingroup$ And ... you can see the last phalanx with the claw, free from the membrane. The hand can move and the movement would be more restricted by the structure of the shoulder and the wrist, than due to the membrane. The fingers can still be spread and collected despite being webbed together. $\endgroup$ – Youstay Igo Oct 11 '15 at 23:27

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