e- topia. “Urban life, Jim- But Not As We Know It”. By William J. Mitchell. Mit press 2000. Page 3. “long live the new, network- mediated metropolis of the digital electronic era.” Page 8…it is a moment to re invent urban design and rethink the role of architecture. We must learn to build globally linked cities
Our job is to design and build the future. The effects of this culture computing revolution that started in the early nineties is huge and is caused seismic shifts in most areas of work including the arts. Some areas have been slow to catch on. The global process of networks is just booting up.
Stanza: Just the tip of the potential. Intercity and Intracity components level informational societies of multi agents. Input and output of data allow emerging complexities which will enable rich new architectural hybrids, merge places, merged cities, mashed up cities, “mash-ups” of cultures. The “divers(c)ity”, will unfold at untold levels inside the huge interwoven networks of the future.
Page 31. “ From and architect’s viewpoint, these electronically mediated paces are not uniform, dimensionless nodes, as they rather misleadingly appear on abstract network diagrams….they have spatial extension, the engage our bodies and they are situated in particular physical contexts. And they are not just interfaces, we are beginning to live our lives in them.
Stanza. As such the city is the interface and we as bodies are the data the variable that act as objects within the system. The embedded data body in these systems becomes part of the cities networked electronic fabric. Hooked in and able to not only be surveyed into the global big brother, the mother of big brother. We now have an added dimension of multi agent feedback. A society, and environment a place that is self aware and able to influence other “situations” in the city space.
Inside the space the data that moves, stock prices, network traffic, building energy consumption, pollution and environmental data.
On page 39. Mitchell talks about light bulbs that are part of structured controllable fields of energy.
Stanza: The whole world of interactive architecture has open up the idea of data controlled interfaces, smart systems. The architecture is the play of digital information on space.
We are working towards smart places that share information and knowledge. To this they are have to be connected up , coded as objects like organisms in a large cell, or like streets in a large city.
The hard part is building the code that allows the communication and ‘handshakes’ to take place. Build the gateways and the people will march through.
This issue is the focus on my Sensity project. An open gateway to the hardware where you just connect fetch and load via xml to your own built interpretive mash-up or interface. It becomes an interface to the interface, and the data can be pushed around and shaped into anything. So what matters essentially is access to the data and how it can be shifted or “mashed” around to create new meaning. Its pervasive quality is to be anywhere.
“The ancient Romans believed that each particular place had its characteristic sprit – its genius loci- that might manifest itself a snake. From Wikipedia, in contemporary usage, “genius loci” usually refers to a location’s distinctive atmosphere, or a spirit of place”, rather than necessarily a guardian spirit.
Stanza: So once we have all this data we are going to see conductive threads and weaves of data patterns, wearable display systems made from conductive polymers. Ours bodies will become laden with bits and electronics. I carry a phone, a GPS Trackstick, motes for light and temp and noise, a camera, and mini disc for sound recording. And all my cards and ID will become embedded with ever increasing amounts of RFID and Mems.
Page 177: Mitchell observes the trade off of pervasive computing, the “imprisonment” of ourself inside our own system. Once information is entered into the system it has different values to different information consumers. Identity becomes and electronically traded commodity. This was the central idea behind my Genomixer project also, ie ownership of the intellectual property embedded in our source code in our DNS.
On page 31 Mitchell Quotes Lewis Mumford’s “The City In History”.ref( page 97 London: Secker& Warburg, 1961)
It is no accident that the emergence of the city as a self contained unit, with alls its historic organs fully differentiated and active, coincided with the development of the permanent record.
The city grew as records were kept and networks developed to contain this information. The city depends on communication, text, speech and now data. Global cities allows mass mega cities of urban real systems and merged mashed up data cities.
Above image shows hundreds of live CCTV feeds being mashed up by Stanza work made in 2004