Mediated Cityscapes

Greg J. Smith


Transborder Immigrant Tool, 2009

Ricardo Dominguez, Brett Stalbaum, Amy Sara Carroll, Micha Cárdenas & Elle Mehrmand


A rough agenda:
1 Define ‘mediated cityscapes’ (we are doing this now!) 2 Carefully consider how ubiquitous computing and the data layer influence how we represent and interact with the city. 3 Review some related supervised student work

Urban form/experience has always been tethered to technology
Left: Telegraph office & “Man with a Movie Camera” Right: illustration from “Des Fortifications”

Distributed computation/data repositories

OpenStreetMap as geospatial data commons

Immaterials: light painting WiFi, 2011
Timo Arnall, Jørn Knutsen & Einar Sneve Martinussen


Mediated Cityscapes are:
1 Activated by context-aware computing, hybridity between virtual and physical spaces and allow us to amplify/annotate the city. (Galloway, 2003) 2 Re-present their environment in unique and novel ways that increase our awareness and insight. 3 Driven by artist/citizen/activist-designed platforms that promote new interactions and connectivity.


Representation: schematizing urban space

Google streetview imagery for the Junction Triangle (my neighbourhood in Toronto)

Representational strategies:
1 Viewing machines 2 Time capsules 3 Giving agency to objects to reveal discrete narratives Some caution: 1 All maps/visualizations (of space) are political

The Impossibility of Understanding in the Path of a Torontonian, 2010
Tori Foster

Berlin Wall 3D, 2010Hoppala & Superimpose

Trash Track, 2009
SENSEable City Laboratory

All maps and visualizations (of space) are political
Microsoft’s recent ‘pedestrian route production’ patent

All representations are malleable

1760 plan of Paris by Vaugondy (Baron Haussmann’s renovation)

Interaction: changing the rules of engagement

Tuning interactions:
1 Programmatic inversion 2 DIY regulation 3 Countervaillance Some caution: 1 The stakes are high!

Friluftskino - Experiments in open-air surveillance cinema, 2007
Michelle Teran

BKME.ORG, 2011-

Martín Bravo, Alex Kozovski & Fred Truman

Sukey, 2011-

Sam Gaus & Sam Carlisle

Lowest common denominator media architecture

Lowest common denominator citizenship
Left: photo: Right: Dave Kemp’s “Data Collection”

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