Exercise 01: Case Studies on Urban Cybernetics(For the list of Casestudies submitted by investigators, please navigate down the page)...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Synopsis
Throughout the semester, we will cover different techniques of collecting data about urban dynamics. These includes ways of recording and measuring data and creating our own customized sensor networks, as well as the possibility of tapping into the data on the user-generated, content-sharing platforms utilized in crowdsourcing; or data collected, managed, and stored via viral sensing practices that reveal how different networks providing city services operate. We will also discuss theory and practice of, and available technologies for, actuating the city, be it through making the built environment context-aware, responsive, and interactive by using embedded actuators; or by providing citizens with real-time information about urban dynamics, which allows them to self-regulate towards a more efficient, sustainable, and intelligent mode of operation. The latter approach focuses on methods for understanding urban information and communicating it to a target audience. Students are required to present and critically evaluate a body of contemporary projects that relate to any of the above-mentioned categories of urban cybernetic practices (a minimum of 10 cases). Each student is required to present the result of his/her critical inquiry to the class during a 30-minute oral presentation, followed by 10 minutes of question-and-answer and feedback from the class, based on the schedule that students collaboratively fill in on the course wikispace. Also, the documentation of the inquiry must be submitted to the wikispace as a pdf file in the format specified in the template that can be found online. Students need to make individual appointments to discuss the primary list of their chosen projects, and to ensure that there is no overlap between the sets of projects that they each choose to work on. The outcome of this exercise constitutes 30% of the final grade.
How to Critically Evaluate an Urban Cybernetic Project
The first step in critically evaluating an urban cybernetic project is to identify the high-level category of practice to which the project belongs:
  1. Urban sensing and urban data collection
    • Viral sensing
    • Embedded sensors and distributed sensor networks
    • User��s solicited input and crowdsourcing
  2. Urban data analysis and visualization
  3. Urban actuation
    • Actuating the built environment via embedded actuators
    • Actuating people within the built environment by providing real-time information via information-delivery platforms
In terms of data collection, a series of three steps must be identified. The first is the acquisition step, which involves obtaining data. The second is the parsing step, which involves changing the acquired data into a format that tags each part of the data with its intended use. In the parsing step, each line of the data file must be broken down to its original parts, then each piece of data needs to be converted to a useful format. Parsing provides some structure to the data��s meaning by ordering it into categories. Hence, the data is successfully tagged, and consequently more useful to a program that will manipulate or represent it in some way. The third is the filtering step, which involves removing portions of data that are not relevant and keeping just the data of interest. [1]
In evaluating the success of the data-collection part of an urban cybernetic project, the following questions will come in handy: How was the data collected? Why was the data collected? What is interesting about the data? What stories about the urban dynamics can the collected data tell? What sort of questions about urban dynamics can be answered by looking at the data?

Data analysis and visualization is based on a series of four steps. First is the mining step, which involves applying methods from statistics or data mining as a way to discern patterns or place the data in a mathematical context, for example, finding the maximum and minimum values or certain frequencies of occurrences within the data set. Second is the representation step, which involves determining the basic form that a set of data will take. One can choose a basic visual model at this point. Some data sets are shown as lists, others are structured like trees, or multi-dimensional. Bar graphs are good representations of a correlation. In the case of geo-tagged information where each entry has a longitude and latitude, data can be mapped as a two-dimensional plot, with the minimum and maximum values for latitude and longitude used for the beginning and end of the scale in each dimension. Third is the refinement step, which involves improving the basic representation to make it clearer and more visually engaging. In this step, graphic design methods such as changing attributes like color, shape, or scale are used to further clarify the representation by calling more attention to particular data, establishing a hierarchy or contributing to readability. And finally, fourth is the interaction step, which involves adding methods for manipulating the data, navigating it, or controlling what features are visible. Interactive features let the user control or explore the data. Interaction might cover things like selecting a subset of the data, or changing the viewpoint either in time- for data that has temporal significance- or in space – for data that has spatial significance . Keep in mind that a change in viewpoint might affect how the visualizations are designed, so there may be a back-and-forth between representation, refinement, and interaction.

Urban data analysis and visualization belongs to a larger field of research that addresses techniques of representing abstract data about the reality of the world that we live in. To properly tackle data visualization problems, methods from the fields of computer science, statistics, data mining, graphic design, and visualization are combined to create useful representations of data sets that allow for deducing meaningful information from raw data pertaining to urban dynamics.

The most important part of understanding data is identifying the question to be answered. And in any data visualization project, success is defined by the audience��s ability to pick up on and be excited about the question. In short, a proper visualization is a kind of a narrative that provides a clear answer to a question without extraneous details, highlighting certain patterns in large qualities of data.

The characteristics of a data set help us to determine what kind of visualization we��ll use. This means that each set of data has particular display needs. The urban condition involves a large quantity of data that, because of its dynamic nature, changes continuously. This makes it extremely difficult to gain a ��big picture�� understanding of the information collected through urban sensing practices. When it comes to data visualization in urban sensing projects, the question is: how can we possibly make sense of so much data? Furthermore, how can we evaluate data that perpetually changes? Yet, keep in mind that the purpose for which you are using the data set has just as much of an effect on the display needs as the data itself.

Last but not least, aside from the characteristics of the data set and the purpose for which you are using it, a clear understanding of the target audience of the data visualizations also dictates the display needs. The questions to be answered here are: who is your audience? What are their goals when approaching a visualization? What do they stand to learn? What sort of control should they have over the interface that delivers the information?

In terms of dealing with the magnitude of data sets pertaining to urban informatics, this issue can be addressed at three different, yet closely related stages. At the first stage when the data is collected, one should keep in mind that it is easy to collect mass quantities. But more data does not necessarily mean better data: just because something can be measured does not mean that it should be. Hence, in creating the raw data set on which the urban dynamics visualizations will be based, one should try to find the smallest amount of data that can still convey something meaningful.

Second, if we are dealing with an already available dataset that contains many dimensions, we should avoid trying to show a multidimensional space that maps too many points of information. One can examine each dimension of a data set separately to construct different narratives that relate to distinct questions about the dynamics recorded within the set, as these questions are not necessarily of the same nature and shouldn��t be combined and addressed in a single visualization. Most of the time, only a few of the variables offered in a data set are required to answer a typical single question.

Third, even after limiting the data and the dimensions of the data, it is possible that the amount of information we are dealing with is still problematic for conveying meaningful narratives. Often, less detail will actually convey more information because the inclusion of overly specific details causes the viewer to miss what is most important, or to disregard the image entirely because it is too complex. One technique for addressing this issue is abstraction: limiting unnecessary details and reducing complex data sets to answer specific questions through targeted visualizations that deal with large data sets subjectively and selectively.[2] All data problems begin with a question and end with a narrative construct that provides clear answer to that question. By focusing on the original intent of the question, one can eliminate details because the question provides a benchmark for what is and is not necessary. At this point, we should ask ourselves, how does the original question operate as a benchmark for eliminating unnecessary details?

In terms of data that has a continually changing nature, the challenge lies in building representations of data that adjust to new values every second, hour, or week. Urban data is a moving target. In urban sensing projects most data comes from the real world, where there are no absolutes and things change, occasionally even drastically, over time. What happens when things that are monitored for urban sensing purposes start to change? How should the audience of these urban information visualizations interact with ��live�� data? How do we unravel data as it changes over time? One technique is the use of animation to playback the evolution of a data set, or interaction to control what temporal or geographical span the audience is looking at.

Furthermore, as the famous statistician John Tukey reminds us, ��The greatest value of a picture is when it forces us to notice what we never expected to see.�� The point is to highlight the fact that we deduce conclusions about various matters based on recognizing how they fit into or create certain patterns of information; by looking at data generated as a byproduct of their internal or external operations. Occasionally, the recognized patterns reveal ��unexpected�� aspects of the phenomena we try to decode. Yet, as Tukey, author of the book Exploratory Data Analysis, affirms: We need good pictures to force the unexpected upon us.

The fact of the matter is that the contemporary city is a cradle of information about the various spatio-temporal dynamics that it contains, and recognizing patterns in this type of information would reveal aspects of urban life that are invisible, or even unexpected, at first glance. The questions to be addressed here are: how can we sense a city? How can we collect information about it? Also, how can the space of urbanity be experienced by revealing patterns that are not initially visible—patterns that are recognized by investigating collected information? Finally, how can such temporal processes, that is, the recognized patterns, be made available to a given observer by incorporating additional sensory perspectives rather than relying on direct and unmediated vision, i.e. audition, thermo-ception, or olfaction?


Furthermore, when it comes to interactive visualizations or presentations of data - this is when we go beyond the limitations exacted by vision as the primary faculty of perception - keep in mind that our goals in analyzing data are to highlight its features in order of their importance, to reveal patterns, and to simultaneously show features that exist across multiple dimensions. To this effect, aside from addressing the question of how to choose the right kind of representative display or presentative interface for our purposes, we need to provide interactive features that will allow users to navigate the represented/presented information in the most effective and efficient way to process the patterns highlighted there.

Moreover, by education and profession, we architects, urban designers, and landscape designers are somewhat comfortable with the realm of visualization, since conventional architectural representation techniques are utilized for conveying physical relationships between constitutive elements of space. Occasionally, we also incorporate time as a fourth dimension to be conveyed through our dynamic visualizations. Yet, the data in urban information visualizations is primarily numeric and symbolic, which makes the task somewhat more complex.
To summarize, the following questions come in handy for the analytical evaluation of urban cybernetic projects that relate to urban data analysis and visualization:
  1. Who is the target audience of the data visualization?
  2. What are the audience��s goals when approaching the visualization?
  3. What do they stand to learn?
  4. What sort of control are they offered over the interface that delivers the information?
  5. How is the question of the magnitude of the data dealt with: limiting the collected data, limiting the dimensions in the data set to be represented, or abstracting the data?
  6. How does the original question to be addressed operate as the benchmark for eliminating unnecessary details in the data visualization?
  7. How are particular patterns highlighted through visualization techniques in order of their importance?
  8. Is the data of a static or dynamic nature?
  9. If the data is of a dynamic nature, what happens when it starts to change? How does the audience interact with this ��live�� data? How is the data that changes over time unraveled?
  10. How is the space of urbanity experienced by revealing patterns that are not initially visible—patterns that are recognized by investigating collected information?
  11. How are such temporal processes, that is, the recognized patterns, made available to a given observer by incorporating additional sensory perspectives, rather than relying on direct and unmediated vision?
  12. How is time incorporated into visualizing dynamic urban data?
In terms of urban actuation, one can explore ways to supplement physical environments with non-substantial architectures that modify and enhance their perception and performance. According to Rodolphe El Khoury from University of Toronto, this is achieved by means of embedded technology that enables the deployment of virtual constructions in real space. The aim is not to dematerialize the building, but rather to exploit the synergistic alignment of architecture with the ephemeral, formless, and non-substantial features of digital technology. Using Hiroshi Ishii��s formulation, to do this we will ��pair bits with atoms�� and alter ordinary objects and inhabited spaces to design interactive, digitally augmented and non-substantial architectures using robotics technologies and programming techniques. The architecture of an interactive space is the architecture of temporalities. The concept quite conveniently accommodates the ��ephemeral,�� and thus the idea of change. Any change happens over time, so the idea of time should be incorporated in any conception of the spatial as durable or not-inert. Then one can think of it as reactive, as capable of animation, alteration, and variation once introduced to identifiable change that agitates the status quo. If we assume that such spatial organization is capable of registering the disturbance of [an] identifiable factor(s), then this type of space should be thought of as that which can observe, which has a gaze of its own. Under these circumstances, the scenarios can fall into the following categories (the list is not exhaustive of possibilities):
  1. Collective amazement and spectacular demonstration of the technological sublime (the type maintains a certain level of historicity in the case of massively viewed spectacles of the electrified city during 19th and early 20th century parades, atomic experiments, world expos, etc.)
  2. Immersive media environments and their hallucinatory effects, as in the radical architectures of 60s and 70s
  3. Installations and performing arts
    1. Where the space is created around a piece that communicates the designer��s concept and the audience is engaged in a voyeuristic act
    2. Where the space is created around a piece that one of the audience interacts with while others maintain the persona of spectators of the act
    3. Where the space is created as the piece that mediates inter-subjective relations between subjects who engage in fleeting encounters, eased and encouraged by the envisioned spatial scenario
    4. Where space is created in the hertzian terrain of connections among wireless devices that are used both as input or/and output terminals, as in locative media
  4. Environments and architectural spaces that solicit people��s needs and desires that they sense via direct input from the inhabitants, or sensed from the contextual information
  5. Environments and architectural spaces that are digitally enhanced so that that they act as mediators of what we define as NSA (No Strings Attached) or fleeting/fearless social encounters amongst their inhabitants
  6. Environments and architectural spaces that are endowed with a limited amount of consciousness about their immediate circumstances and the processes contained within them so that they are capable of adapting to new environmental conditions (temperature, humidity, lighting, etc.) in order to provide their inhabitants with convenient spatial experiences
Keep in mind that in order for interactive spaces to implement technologically enhanced, digitally augmented, responsive, and context-aware environments, the complexity of phenomena is established through the following phases, which are the ones that need to be clearly identified in the critical evaluation of urban cybernetic projects as responsive mechanisms:
  1. Implementing the spatial gaze, as in the process of sensing an identifiable disturbance or change through the use of sensing technology that can meaningfully register this change
  2. Implementing spatial animation, as in introducing processes that generate registerable change in spatial perception using non-substantial or ephemeral materiality as well as provoking change in physical phenomena that can be registered through vision, audition, thermo-ception, olfaction, or even gestation
  3. Connecting the registered change detected via the spatial gaze to the evoked change in spatial perception
  4. Adding communicative behavior in hertzian space
  5. Adding memory of the past or the faculty of temporal registration of change, which allows for pattern recognition and anticipation of emergent, unpredictable behavior
  6. Exploring the question of representing non-substantial architecture if applicable through ephemeral conditions
Transforming a space to a sentient, decision-making responsive environment that is capable of hosting human interactions allows the space to customize itself under different circumstances, which enhances the experience of its inhabitants. The interaction categorized above happens between monitoring agents and actuating agents. Actuating agents in such scenarios can be listed as follows:
  1. Light-emitting agents
  2. Movement-initiating agents
  3. Sound-creating agents
  4. Architectural surfaces as digital screens
    1. Where architectural surfaces are envisioned as collections or grids of building blocks with a multiplicity of states, occasionally including binary states that provide the system with the possibility of a pixel-based manipulation of architectural surfaces when the system has access to each individual [physical] pixel to change its state
    2. Where architectural surfaces are envisioned as a digital screens or a surface on which images are projected. This way, the architectural surfaces transform to portals for the delivery of context-aware digital information, or agents for provoking change in perceptory aspects of the space by animating such surfaces
  5. Agents that allow for thermo-ceptory or tactile manipulation, such as change in levels of humidity or temperature, or agents that create and manipulate the flow of air, such as fans, or agents that provoke change in a surface that is received in terms of tactility. For example, imagine a surface made out of little building blocks, each of which connected to a servo motor that may at times change the arrangement of these elements, resulting in a smooth or jagged surface.
  6. Agents that allow for manipulation of soundscape of space, which are agents that are capable of producing meaningful sound or noise at different frequencies, rhythms, and volumes. The created sound can be ambient, as in being heard all over the augmented space, or targeted to specific zones or locations within the space
  7. Agents that allow for olfactory manipulation. These are agents that are capable of emitting different scents in the space with different intensities
  8. PDAs or personal handheld devices with digital screens or other digitally augmented devices that are wearable or portable in case that the spatial scenario is envisioned as being enacted by individuals who benefit from a plethora of input/output capabilities requiring digital prosthetics.
Furthermore, monitoring agents, which are responsible for what we can characterize as the spatial gaze, will allow us to detect quantifiable change and translate it to machine-readable format:
  1. Light sensor
  2. Color sensor for sensing dominant colors
  3. Humidity sensor
  4. Temperature sensor
  5. Infrared sensor that senses presence via change in heat
  6. Action-detection sensor/magnetic field sensor
  7. IR distance-sensing sensor for sensing presence of a mobile entity
  8. RFID card + sensors or Bluetooth radio transmitters for registering identity/presence of a mobile entity
  9. Vibration sensor
  10. Digital compass sensor for sensing orientation
  11. GPS sensor for geographical location
  12. Accelerometer for sensing speed and direction of movement
  13. Tilt sensor
  14. Real-time feed of digital camera for sensing presence/motion/change in visual aspects of the atmospheric phenomena
  15. Sensing tactile interaction using
    1. Buttons and dials
    2. Push sensors
    3. Bend sensor
    4. Touch sensors
  16. Sensing the presence of the other or tele-presence using:
    1. Internet connection
    2. Wireless cellular communication
  17. Sensing subjects with digital prosthetics using electromagnetic field sensors
Finally, for each critically evaluated project, the following aspects need to be also addressed:
  1. Provide an extreme vision for the project: what would our world look like if the project in question is pushed to the limits of reality and imagination and implemented at the largest scale and most radical mode possible? In providing an extreme future, you should speculate on past/present/near future/distant future possibilities.
  2. Establish the reason(s) for the project��s significance to the goal of improving the urban experience.
  3. Identify a level of artistic intervention or poetry through which the system can be interacted with in novel ways.
  4. Explore the challenges of implementing the project or maintaining its operation in the long run.
  5. If the project has a physical component, discuss the object itself and the process of its design, as well as how the potentials of the materials are being utilized to effectively substantialize bits of information.
  6. Consider the possibilities in terms of scalability of the project. For example, if the project consists of a stand-alone, digitally enhanced object, how can the base unit be multiplied towards an orchestrated, distributed performance at the scale of an urban setting; and how can the base unit be enhanced to communicate with others or a central control and command mechanism, and to what ends?
  7. Study the information architecture and basic logic of operation of the system.
  8. Speculate on data/interface/actuation scenario scalability. Can you think of different scenarios or interfaces for the same type of data or different data that can be used towards the realization of the same scenario?
  9. Hypothesize if there is any consideration of scenarios where things go wrong in the system? What is the designer��s or your response to nodal or total failure of the physical or virtual components of the cybernetic system that you are evaluating?
Related websites where you can start looking for case studies:
http://benfry.com/
http://www.edwardtufte.com/
http://infosthetics.com/
http://www.visualcomplexity.com/vc/
http://datavisualization.ch/
http://flowingdata.com/
http://www.demoscience.org/
www.ted.com/
datavis.tumblr.com/
www.datavis.ca/
www.datavis.com/
datavisualization.ch/
www.informationisbeautiful.net/
datajournalism.stanford.edu/
www.interactive-architecture.com/
graffitiresearchlab.com/
www.interactivearchitecture.org/
robotecture.com/
www.interactivearchitecture.com
www.interactionfield.de/
www.urbanscreens.org/
www.situatedtechnologies.net


[1] The seven steps of data collection, analysis, and visualization, as well as some questions about how to critically evaluate the projects, are based on Ben Fry��s suggestions in his book on visualizing digital information. Ben Fry, Visualizing Data. (Cambridge, MA : O'Reilly, c2008): 1-24.
[2] An example of such an abstraction technique is its application to creating subway maps. Harry Beck invented the format now commonly used for subway maps in the 1930s when he redesigned the map of the London Underground. The map simplified the complicated subway system to a series of 45 vertical, horizontal, and diagonal lines. While attempting to preserve as much of the subway system��s relative physical layout as possible, the map shows only the connections between stations, as that is the only information that riders use to decide their paths. Subway maps leave out the details of surface roads because the additional detail adds more complexity to the map than necessary. Instead, individual stations are used as waypoints for determining direction.

.............................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Sookyung Chun schun@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Transformative Experience
Interacitve design is a way for transform user's experience. Initial source such as people's movement, information and ideas enables the public to transform the environment to become more dynamic and participatory. Through case studies, I try to focus on how people's behavior or information transformed to other type of information and this information facilitate individual and public performance. Also, I concentrated on how non-visual information transformed into visual form in real space.
Projects:
Inventing interaction between users Pick n' Play
Individual performance become public information Rockefeller��s Intelligent LED lighting, Dreamcube, Urban Light Installations, Interactive music experience
Responding individual's action Augmented Reality Turntable, Plastic bag installation, Binary Waves, Flow 5.0 by Roosegaarde, NY EXPO
.................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Jun Wang jwang2@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Reshaping the conditions of individual decision making process and social behaviors via visualizing information, reactive and dynamic environment intervention, and a hard or soft system that creates incentive.
What can help people to make better decisions and improve their lives, helping them collaborate with each other better rather than engage in conflicts. First thing you can do is provide more readily accesible information, more specifically catering to individual needs. And the information interface can be reshaped , becoming more intuitive and perhaps more entertaining. More importantly incentives of fun or feelings of achievement could be provided to accelerate the flow of accomplishment.
Projects:
San Fran Emotion Map
Crime Maps
Chicago inThirty
OneBayArea
Piano Stairs
Bottle Bank Arcade
Evoke
EpicWin
Performative Ecologies
Transformable Mobile Device
.................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Sneha Khullar skhullar@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Physical and Virtual Public Domain
Defining, understanding and designing a public ��space�� has been evolving from the discourses of Immanuel Kant, Richard Sennett and Jiirgen Habermas on social exchange to ��binary�� transactions in ubiquitous digital environment. Through the case studies I shall attempt to establish how people, their life and behavior is affected by introducing another meaning to this collective place. Another line of thought shall be about how this meeting platform can be visualized in cybernetic to enable conception of pycho-social aspect of humans. I have made an effort to dig for some humorous elements (maybe critical) in the cases.
Projects:
Elements in physical public space Too smart city - JooYoun Paek, David Jimison, The world��s deepest bin – The fun theory, Dead drops - Aram Bartholl
Visualization in physical public space Breakout - laura Forlando, Dana Spielgel, Antonina Simeti, and Anthony Townsend, MAP - Aram Bartholl, A day in the life – Plan b
Hand from above – Chris O��shea, Scenes from last week - Andrew Demirjian
Appreciation in Virtual public spaceTop new best free Trips - Stephen Von Worley, Pass it on - Clement Valla, The procrastination flow chart - Ehdom
*I still need to purge the list.
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Hyun Tek Yoon hyoon1@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Responsive Space
Since post-modernism, the design in architecture became much more liberal than before, and the form of architecture is becoming quite extensive physically and physiologically. At the same time, the definition and meaning of public space is brought in a lot of contemporary issue. The theme of case studies is ��responsive spaces.�� I want to focus on smaller scale public space rather than large scale space. The characteristic of public spaces, which are flow, density and uses, keeps changing by time and usage. New technologies maximize these variable properties and provide new possibility to define urban public spaces. The public space might probably be a timely reaction of structure, materials, forms, or spatial programs, which made possibly by improvements and interfusion of new concepts and technologies.
Projects:
01. Enteractive at 11th&Flower_ELCTROLAND_Visual
02. Pulse_ELCTROLAND_Visual
03. 7 World Trade Center Podium Light Wall_James Carpenter Design Association Inc_Visual
04. Dune_ Daan Roosegaarde_Visual
05. Bubbles_Michael Fox_Visual +Kinetic
06. Light Drift_My Studio_Visual
07. Crystal Chandelier_WHITEvoid_Visual
08. Pixel Skin 01&02_Orangevoid _Kinetic
09. FLARE façade_WHITEvoid_Kinetic
10. Flow_ Daan Roosegaarde_Kinetic
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Stacy Morton:smorton@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Optimizing the Familiar Stranger
A familiar stranger is an individual who is recognized from regular activities, but with whom one does not otherwise socialize with. Since they have a background of shared experience (ie. traveling, exercising, studying), such individuals are more likely to connect than perfect strangers. These urban cybernetic case studies all enhance the idea of a familiar stranger by either a physical or virtual connection creating familiar strangers through means of static and dynamic buildings, walls, objects, identification devices, cell phones, or art displays.
Projects:N-Building; Blinkenlights; Aperture Facade Installation; Hole In Space; Talsmann: Cross Country Skiing China; Connected Products; Personal.Aura; Serendipity; Banjo; Grindr; We Are Forest; Mobile Dinner
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Nikola Bojic: nbojic@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Toward open cybernetic design
Cyber cities as intangible extensions of physical urban existence are starting to generate important influence on urban planning and infrastructure in general. Even though emerging real-time environments consider openness as a main prerequisite of any cybernetic system, their openness is mostly considered as ��dehumanized input of human-generated data��. Eleven case studies are concentrated in the four fields of interest: urban tracking, emotion sensing, urban augmentation and collective design. Every field of concentration contains one project which challenges and interrogates others in a sense of openness and human participation (NYC vs. NYC / Spaceless / Image Fulgurator / Twitter House). Movement through these four fields should negotiate possibility of shifting from urban cybernetic infrastructure toward possibility of open cybernetic design.
Projects:
Backtalk, Nike+, NYC vs. NYC - Public Face II, Pulse, Spaceless - Streetmuseum, The Image Fulgurator - Glass Peristyle Project, La Ville Spatiale, Twitter House
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Lauren Matrka: lmatrka@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Visualizing the invisible as a new geography.
These projects are unified in the way they represent data collected from typically invisible entities as new terrains or geographies that coexist with our physical one or even begin to distort it. Most of them visualize the usage patterns of a particular virtual or mobile technology in a given geographic location. Typical representations of this type of dataset manifest themselves as a field of gradated color superimposed on a map, indicating zones of high and low density. While the gradient as a representation of usage density conjures a relatively accurate mental picture- an atmosphere thick with cellular communication, for example- the projects I collected exhibit representations that have a more physical implication by inflating the contours of the gradient to form a topography.
Projects:
WiFi Light Painting, In The Air, Real-Time Talk, Invisible Cities, Visualizing Urban Transportation, Tweetography, Bashiba Panorama, The Ghost in the Field,
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Sumona Chakravarty schakrav@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Presence
Living in the cybernetic city changes our perspective about our presence in the world. On one hand locative technology makes it possible for us to be acutely aware of our presence in the city not only in relation to its physical environment but also to its emotional, ecological, social, political landscape. The little blue dot on the screen proclaiming ��you are here�� binds us solidly with the city. On the other hand we are completely dislocated, our presence is trans-located within a fraction of a second to any part of the world.
This paradox is represented by a project titled ��You are here Museu�� by Laura Kurgan at the Museu D��Art Contemporani, Barcelona in 1995 at a time when GPS had only recently been made available to the public. The artist placed a series of GPS devices at fixed locations within the gallery. The coordinates of each device were saved every few minutes and visualized on a map, revealing that although the GPS device was stationary its presence was constantly shifting. More than highlighting a flaw in the GPS technology the project created a metaphor that represented the constantly shifting notion of our presence that is created as we try to exist between the virtual and physical worlds.
The projects in this paper also similarly represent this paradox. Amble time, Amsterdam Realtime, Taxi, Yellow Arrow, Fix my Street, Net Dérive, Pigeon Blog and Augmented Reality Flash Mob use locative media to reinforce the link between our presence and the urban psychogeography. Locative media references Merleau-Ponty��s ��Phenomology of Perception�� by emphasizing the notion that our presence, the location of the ��body proper��, is the site for experiencing the environment and creating new meaning. Our location and our movement through the urban landscape allows us to access a layer of digital information that blankets the city, enabling us to perceive new spatial patterns and embedded narratives. These narratives present diverse perspectives and conflicting meanings within the same space, creating a public domain where multiple identities converge; where we encounter the ��other�� and connect with the larger community of the city.
The projects are also influenced by Baudelaire��s idea of a flâneur, or the Situationist��s experience of a dérive, emphasizing how our presence not only allows us to perceive the urban landscape, but also enables us alter it by using the city. These projects empower us with a sense of being able to affect change by claiming the city, and create a significance for our collective roles, and individual presence in society.
But there is also a presence that is displaced or lost; and some of the projects like Remote and Can you see me now? articulate an alienation between the physical and virtual worlds. These projects are based on the idea of ��telepresence�� where presence in one location is remotely actuated in another physical or virtual space. Commercial applications of telepresence, like the conference technology developed by Cisco, try to create a seamlessness between these two remote locations. However these artistic explorations try to reveal the overlaps and anomalies that occur when our presence between the physical and the virtual world.
Projects:
Locative Media Projects Amble time, Amsterdam Realtime, TAXI, Yellow Arrow, Fix my street, Net Derive, PigeonBlog, Augmented Reality Flash Mob,
Telepresence projects Can you see me now?, Remote
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................Brad Crane
Encoding, decoding, concealing.
Given that we are all subject to myriad control system in our urban environment the aim of this analysis is to question the reality of the information and messages that we perceive. The conversion of data to information, vice-versa, and how it can be distorted or revealed through our systems. In these projects artists and designers discover and exploit the ability of these systems to manipulate the understanding of what is being presented. The project fbFaces works with the precept of encoding, or the adaptation of data into information readable only by decoding or re-deciphering meaning. Others (GML, Graf Analysis, Laser Knuckles, Palimpost) provide both the encoding and decoding manipulation of handwritten messages. Already an encrypted type of information the projects take the message, either literal or figural, encode it and decode it through a different medium thereby changing the end meaning or effect. The final manipulation is that of censorship. Both additive (Occupy, Facemask) and subtractive (Enough Already, Dash Out, Invisibility) censorship are represented. In the additive data is obscured through the addition of unneccesary or clandestine information that makes the original meaning difficult to interpret. Subtractive censorship, on the other hand, obscures the meaning through the removal of important information.
Encode:
1. fbFaces
Encode / Decode:
2. Graffiti Markup Language
3. Graffiti Analysis
4. Laser Knuckles
5. Palimpost
Censoring (+):
6. Occupy the Internet
7. Facemask
Censoring (-)
8. The Enough Already
9. Dash-Out
10. Invisibility Kinect
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................Carolina Soto csoto@mit.edu
Theme: Materializing information in real space
Digital manipulation and representation of information has been, in the past decades, constrained to the ambit of the computer, only accessible through the screen, mouse and keyboard. Different research groups, such as the Tangible Media Group at MIT, have been questioning this paradigm and researching different ways to manipulate and represent information in a more interactive and sensorial way.
The cases presented in this study are all grouped under the common umbrella of representing information outside the realm of the computer and the screen, and moving this representation into real three-dimensional space.
In this selection, information is understood as a malleable matter that can be sensed, manipulated, transformed and finally represented in the physical world.
Projects:
Localizing Information
01. Living Memory / Pl@net
02. Geosphere
Quantifying Information
03. dataMorphose
Embodying Information
04. Seven Mile Boots
Familiarizing Information
05. Blur building / Braincoats
06. Metropath(ologies)
Subverting Inormation
07. Sousveillance
08. Safer Spaces: communication design for counter terrorism
Synesthesizing Information
09. Sensory Substitution
10. Hidden Worlds of Noise and Voice
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Justin Brandon jbrandon@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Cybernetics & Mobility
Road Pricing & Parking Optimization:
01. Singapore ERP
02. London Congestion Pricing
03. SF Park
Traffic Counting & Management:
04. Eco-Counter
05. NYC Transportation Management System
Car Sharing:
06. Autolib
07. Buzzcar
08. RelayRides
Bicycling:
09. Social Bicycles (SoBi)
10. NYC Bike Share
11. Boston Hubway
12. LightLane
13. Copenhagen Wheel
Walkability:
14. WalkScore
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Felix Raspall craspall@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme:Craft, Augmented Reality and Tangible Interfaces. Current Practices and Emerging Opportunities.Historically, craft and industrial production have been incompatible because craft produces variation while industry requires standardization. Contemporary digital tools opens up the possibility of dealing with variation in an industrial context, thus eliciting parallels and overlapping with craft. As industrial and non‐industrial modes of production occur side‐by‐side they are often competing for the same resources. What are the opportunities within human-computer interaction, fabrication tools, to enhance and empower the craftsmanship and new modes of fabrication?
Projects:

Digital Fabrication
1. Fab-Lab
2. Ponoko
Digialization of Matter
3. High-Low Tech
Tangibilization of bits
4. Factum Arte
Self Replicating Machines
5. Self Assembly
Tangible User Interfaces:
6. HandScape
7. IO Brush
8. Siftables
Augmented Reality
7. Sixth Sense
8. Helmet Mounted Display
9. BMW Augmented Reality in practice
10. Invisible Maze
Augmented Vistuality:
11. Haptic Devices for Medical Training and Intervention
12. Haptic Devices for construction

...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Peter Zuroweste pzurowes@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Exiting Cyberspace Situated Computing and the Erosion of the Interface

"GUIs fall short of embracing the richness of human senses and skills people have developed through a lifetime of interaction with the physical world. Our attempt is to change "painted bits" into "tangible bits"
by taking advantage of multiple senses and the multimodality of human interactions with the real world. We believe the use of graspable objects and ambient media will lead us to a much richer multi-sensory experience of digital information."
-Hiroshi Ishii and Brygg Ullmer, Tangible Bits

Digital computation in the 20th century--beginning in 1946 with the 59,400 lb. ENIAC (Electronic Numerical Integrator And Computer) and ending with the 6.7 oz personal digital assistant Palm VII--was dominated by the screen as the interface for connecting users and digital data. The psychospatial experience of the digital screen provided a novel experience for the user, requiring them to temporarily suspend the ontology of the famliar world--composed of atoms--and enter a computational envrionment composed of bits. As information technology accelerated into consumer markets, and interdependent networks emerged in infrastruces such as the World Wide Web, the term "cyberspace" became popularized as a term for describing the alternative ontology of the 20th century computational environment, an immaterial space collapsed to the screen, yet fully capable of creating, supporting, and defining users' psychosocial identiies.

The case studies here are presented under the title "Exiting Cyberspace: Situated Computing and the Erosion of the Interface." The collection of projects are sequenced in a way that seeks to track computing in the 21st century as it moves away from the screen and into our cities via strategies like urban sensing (viral, embedded, or crowd sourced), data visualization, and urban acutation (tangible, ambient, or real-time). The projects were selected dually for their ability to describe a narrative about the 21st century interface, and their implications and contributions to the real-time and cybernetic investigations around which the course is constructed.
1. Word Lens
2. Zero Touch
3. Timepiece Explorer
4. G-Speak
5. Human Antenna
6. Liquid Wall
7. Funktionide
8. Amae Apparatus
9. Stress OutSourced
10. Data Fossils
11. Gestalt
12. Momo Bots
13. Intimate Mobiles
14. Ambient Umbrella
15. Luka, the WiFi Dog
16. Natural Fuse
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Hailong Wu hwu1@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme:
Involved Body
1. Water Board
2. Skinput
3. Augmented Fitting Room
Physical reaction
4. On Object
5. Go with the flow
6. Slurp
Communication With Environment
7. Air quality balloons
8. The idea of trees
9. Flutter field
10. tele-present wind
Visualization
11. Time table
12. iPad light painting
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Brandon Cuffy bcuffy@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Intuitive Technologies
As cybernetic systems become more prevalent in everyday object, the ability to make a citizen context aware helps better situate the individual
in a larger urban/ spatial context. Allowing sensor systems to work in tandem with intuitive behaviors, such as walking, talking, texting, and body
gestures, underscores the increasingly peripheral nature of computer systems, creating an ideal reciprocity between physical and
digital information flow. Furthermore, our constituent role in effecting our environment can be rethought, not at as passive occupants,
but as active participants.
Projects:
Talking:
Chat Stop
Walking:
LED Urban Carpet
Homographies
Dune 4.2
Touch:
Pulse Park
Texting:
SMSlingshot
LIk-Lak
Behavioral:
Augmented Trash Can
Ping a Social Networking Garment
Object 2.0
..................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Sara Hendren shendren@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Who's A Cyborg Now? Prosthetics and the Future of Disability
When we think of prosthetics now, our minds go immediately toward the super-human bionic limbs now increasingly available; they're the tools that restore function where it has been lost. Or, in another vein, Augmented Reality devices are familiar and celebrated tools of the current cyborg fascination for the not-obviously disabled. These "prosthetics" are for modern bodies, desirable for their enhancement potential. But "performing disability" has much richer research potential, and is a much more generative design area, than may initially be apparent. These case studies draw together prosthetics, generously defined, for their capacities to interrogate the very notion of disability itself. They each destigmatize, destabilize, and or decenter prevailing notions of abled and disabledness, dependence and independence, restoration versus enhancement.
HearWear (various new-genre hearing aids)
Wii Cane (Touch Graphics)
Tongue piercing for wheelchair steering (Northwestern University School of Medicine)
Music vibration collar (Frederik Podzuweit)
Squeeze chairs (Temple Grandin and Wendy Jacob)
Haptic Braille tattoo (Klara Jirkova)
Sensing assistive scarf (Nissen/Cuttica/Bian at CIID)
Undercover (private musical experience blanket) (Dana Gordon)
Talk-O-Meter (Unperfekthaus)
Veasyble
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Pablo Roquero proquero@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Leisure and Play in the Urban Landscape
This series of case studies are intended to show a collection of ludic elements within the urban landscape, showing on one hand different ways of personal and social involvement, levels of restrain and whether the play engages the performers in mental or physical ways (based on "The Sliding Scales of Play"). But also, on the other hand, how do these designs interact with the public domain expanding the leisure realm. Creative playing, design resilience and augmentation and re-signification of the existing are core issues in these examples.
Fun Palace
Schouwburgplein
Central Park (listen to the light)
Moody Mushroom Floor
Polygone Playground
Volumen
Primal Source
Dexia Tower
Body Paint
Google Chrome Interactive Building Projections
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Anne Schmidt aschmidt@gsd.harvard.edu
Voicing Opinions & Expressing Resistance

Citizen Reporters
Ushahidi.com
Avaaz.org | Change.org
CNN iReport
UN Gobal Pulse

Intervention & Activism
Krzysztof Wodiczko
L.A.S.E.R. Graffiti Tagging
SMSlingshot | SMS Guerilla Projector
Kein Schloss in meinem Namen

Public Opinion:
Analogue
Greetings from the West Market
I wish this was...
Audio
The Discrete Dialougue Network
Tejp

...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Soo Bum You syou@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Eye
The case studies are about the eye. Some projects are about the technologies, some about the symbolic use of eye as a absolute power or a something above human in food changes or a observer who keep watching us.
Projects:
01. Eye Writer
02. Opto-Isolator
03. Double Taker
04. Eye Tracking Advertisement
05. CCTV
06. Eye Contact
07. Sand Box
08. Solar Equation
09. Reface
10. Out of Bounds
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Stephanie Lin slin1@gsd.harvard.edu
Delay and Fragmentation
This collection of case studies explores the effects of temporal delay and/or visual fragmentation as form of transmitting information to a viewer. Through these strategies one can begin to discern a pattern or a history of events. These projects serve to show how "real-time delay" or real-time fragmentation can create an awareness of a changing environment.
DS+R - Facsimile: temporal and spatial deception
Cardiff Miller - Conspiracy: temporal and spatial deception
Mathieu Briand - Derriere le Monde Flottant: exchanging viewpoints
Camille Utterback - Shifting Time: viewing a history and presence through visual fragmentation
Rafael Lozano-Hemmer - Close-Up: viewing a history and presence through visual fragmentation
Rafael Lozano-Hemmer - Blow-up: viewing presence through visual fragmentation
Jason Bruges - Mirror, Mirror: viewing presence through digital and analogue reflection
UVA - Speed of Light: drawing with light, using effects of delay
Olafur Eliasson - Multiple Shadow House: visual construction through overlapping shadows
Olafur Eliasson - Mikroskop: visual construction through reflection and kaleidescoping
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Paul Cattaneo cattaneo@gsd.harvard.edu
The Opaque
The following works are focused on the concept of altering or manipulating the perception of the individual in space and time. Each work is focused upon either the act of recording or the representation of surveillance through abstract means; the works are a lineage of video and analog art dealing directly with the creation of opacity in visual communication. This opacity is an awareness of the medium of communication that highlights the subject.
Dan Graham : Two-Way Mirror Labyrinth
Richard Serra, Nancy Holt : Boomerang
Joan Jonas : Vertical Roll
Bill Viola : Reflecting Pool
Tierry Fournier : Usual Suspects
Tierry Fournier : Fenêtre Augmentée
Samuel Bianchini : Crossing Values
Daniel Rozin : Mirrors 1-9
Christian Moeller : Nosy, Cheese
Marie Sester : Mirror
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Krista Palen kpalen@gsd.harvard.edu
City as the Biosphere
Air
Breather
Particle Falls
CamMobSens
SiteLens
Field
Water
Seaswarm
Fishface Sensor Array
Sun
Sunseeker
Raycounting
Flora
Lit From Within
Leafsnap
Fauna
Model Urban Development
Fishface Sensor Array
Carnivorous Robots
...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Ling Fan lfan@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Memory and Delete
In a lot of scientific fictions or romantic films, the selective memory technology is available to delete the memory. In an essay by a researcher at Harvard Medical School, the author envisioned potential technological method to delete the unfavorable memory, though there is no current technology can do that. Delete sometimes is more favorable in the digital age with perfect remembering. In a book by Viktor Mayer-Schnberger called “Delete”, the author suggested we must reintroduce our capacity to forget. Digital technology empowers us as never before, yet it has unforeseen consequences as well. The digital realm remembers what is sometimes better forgotten, and this has profound implications for us all.

Deleting to Remember
Monument Against Fascism, War, and Violence
Memory Augmented Reality

Retrofitting a Past Behavior
Tropism Well
Table Table

Material Memory
Water Logo
Lotus

Reactive Transparency to Remember or Forget
Intimacy
Krakow Weaving

Communicative Memory
Selective Memory Theatre
Dis-Armor

Memory and Cross-culture
Light Light
Perfume Perform

...................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................
Steven Chen sychen@gsd.harvard.edu
Theme: Cinematic Futures
Technology
01_GPS Tracking
02_Telepresence
03_Interactive UI
04_The Autonomous Car
05_Artificial Intelligence
Environments and Future Visions
06_Connected World
07_Magic
08_Cloning
09_Genetic Engineering
10_Perception and Space