Connected displays, by Future Cities Catapult
Future Cities Catapult is interested in how our cities will feel and perform when objects, spaces, buildings, infrastructure and people are connected. As part of an ongoing design research project about the connected street, the Catapult collaborated with Berg, a UK-based technology company, to explore the possibilities of connected displays. Berg researched the idea through making a prototype and the Catapult through a series of interviews with those who commission, curate and manage signage. Read more connectedstreets.org/
Historical Map: Unpublished Proof of H.C. Beck’s London Underground Diagram, 1932
A printer’s proof of the first card folder (pocket) edition of Beck’s famous diagram, with edits and corrections marked in his own hand.
Of note is the use of quite ugly and overpowering “blobs” instead of the now-ubiquitous “ticks” for station markers, and the fact that the map has been entirely hand-lettered by Beck, using what he called “Johnston-style” characters. He’s cheated quite a bit with his letterforms and spacing on some of the longer station names.
The Piccadilly line is also shown in what seems to us a very odd light blue, although Beck was simply following established colour conventions from earlier geographical maps. The now-familiar dark blue was in place by the time the diagram was officially released in January of 1933.
Source: Scanned from my personal copy of “Mr. Beck’s Underground Map" by Ken Garland
If you’re a New Yorker who likes to nerd out about maps, urbanism, and data visualization, a new app called Tunnel Vision will be like poetry to your eyes. But even if you’re not into any of those things, it might make dismal waits on subway platforms a little more fun.
The existence of kids in public space is important. They are the indicator of great public space of a city.
Singapore - The Social Laboratory
Excellent longread by Shane Harris on protection of national security & engineering a more harmonious society via mass surveillance and big data.
Singapore was the perfect home for a centrally controlled, complex technological system designed to maintain national order. […] “In Singapore, people generally feel that if you’re not a criminal or an opponent of the government, you don’t have anything to worry about.”
City maps made by judgmental jerks.
[Map by RBD Enterprises]
Playgrounds. Reinventing the Square
Madrid (April 30 – September 22, 2014 / Sabatini Building, Floor 1)
Through a selection of works from different time periods and in different mediums (paintings, sculptures, installations, videos, photographs, archive devices…), this exhibition analyses the socialising, transgressive and political potential of play when it appears linked to public space. The premise of Playgrounds is twofold: on one side, the popular tradition of carnival shows how the possibility of using recreational logic to subvert, reinvent and transcend exists, if only temporarily. On the other side, there has been two fundamental constants in utopian imagery throughout history: the vindication of the need for free time (countering work time, productive time) and the acknowledged existence of a community of shared property, with a main sphere of materialisation in public space.
The historical-artistic approach to the political and collective dimension of spaces of play, on view in this exhibition, gets under way in the second half of the 19th century, a time that signals the start of the process of free time becoming consumption time; a process that threw the concept of public space into crisis as it started to be conceived not only as an element for exercising (political) control, but also one for financial gain. Thus, cities started to become the objects of rational and utilitarian planning, where the field of architecture was redefined, providing spaces for play with new values, built as one of the key points of the modern ideology of the public.
IMAGE: Palle Nielsen, A group of activists from different organisations in Denmark cleared a backyard in Stengade 52 in the area Nørrebro in Copenhagen the 31 of March 1968 and build a playground for the children instead. This was done to create attention of the lack of playgrounds as well as an overall redevelopment of the area. © VEGAP, Madrid, 2014 © PETERSEN ERIK / Polfoto
Is it possible to visualize the flow of our cities? And how can it be done?
This new project from Rotterdam attempts to represent the motion of the city, creating nine videos to capture its urban rhythm.