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Search results for 'greenfield'
9 February 2014

A review of Adam Greenfield’s Against the Smart City

Masdar City

Chris Carlsson started reading Adam Greenfield’s new book, Against the Smart City, “with the expectation that it would be a critical view of the ways our urban lives have changed during the past half decade with the massive adoption of so-called “smart phones” and the rest of the ubiquitous technosphere.” But it turns out, writes Carlsson, he has “a rather different target in mind. His polemic, delivered by EPUB and kindle only (so far), is directed at a techno-utopian fantasy promulgated by large multinational corporations and their government client-sponsors.”

“The information platforms projected to undergird Smart Cities are to be privately owned. No open source or free software here! “The smart city is a place where the technical platforms on which everyday life is built are privately owned and monetized, and information is reserved exclusively for the use of those willing and able to pay for it.” As Greenfield notes in one chapter, the whole model is based on a neoliberal sensibility in which government is stripped down to its most minimal functionality (primarily policing and systems administration), while as much as possible of the surrounding society is privately owned. Most of what people might do with and for each other is to the greatest extent possible monetized and commodified, to be packaged and sold to the residents (clients) of the new towns. Greenfield has looked carefully at the promises and projections of the various corporate plans and nowhere has he found anything to indicate open access to “disaggregated raw [data] feeds.”

1 March 2009

Adam Greenfield towards a newer urbanism

Adam Greenfield
Adam Greenfield, Nokia’s head of design direction for service and user-interface design, is frequently featured on Putting People First as his thinking is close to our own interests.

According to his Twitter feed, he is not entirely happy in Finland, but having lived up north myself, I have to share with Adam that the long dark winters have a way of getting at you. Patience, Adam. The bright, light summer is coming soon.

In a lengthy interview (12,500 words) by Tish Shute, Greenfield talks about augmented reality, virtual worlds, Usman Haque’s Pachube project, the networked book, the networked city, and what to do at the end of the world.

“You know what I’d really like to see interaction design wrestle with? I would love to see a rigorous, no-holds-barred examination of the complexities of the self and its performance in everyday life, and how these condition our use of public space (and personal media in public space). I would love to see the development of ostensibly “social” platforms informed by some kind of reckoning with issues like vulnerability, dishonesty, the fact of power dynamics. In other words, before we deign to go about “helping” people, wouldn’t it be lovely if we understood what they perceived themselves as needing help with, and why?

I’d also pay good money to see talented interaction designers turn their efforts toward tools for the support of deliberative democracy, for the navigation of complex multivariate decision spaces, and for conflict resolution.”

Another quote I enjoyed, is Adam’s thinking on the role of everyware in reducing carbon footprint/energy management etc:

“I’m not skeptical about the potential of ubiquitous systems to meter energy use, and maybe even incentivize some reduction in that use – not at all. I’m simply not convinced that anything we do will make any difference.

Look, I think we really, seriously screwed the pooch on this. We have fouled the nest so thoroughly and in so many ways that I would be absolutely shocked if humanity comes out the other end of this century with any level of organization above that of clans and villages. It’s not just carbon emissions and global warming, it’s depleted soil fertility, it’s synthetic estrogens bioaccumulating in the aquatic food chain, it’s our inability to stop using antibiotics in a way that gives rise to multi-drug-resistance in microbes.

Any one of these threats in isolation would pose a challenge to our ability to collectively identify and respond to it, as it’s clear anthropogenic global warming already does. Put all of these things together, assess the total threat they pose in the light of our societies’ willingness and/or capacity to reckon with them, and I think any moderately knowledgeable and intellectually honest person has to conclude that it’s more or less “game over, man” – that sometime in the next sixty years or so a convergence of Extremely Bad Circumstances is going to put an effective end to our ability to conduct highly ordered and highly energy-intensive civilization on this planet, for something on the order of thousands of years to come.”

Read interview

7 December 2008

Audio interview with Nokia’s Adam Greenfield

Adam Greenfield
Podcamp Barcelona’s Chris Pinchen interviewed Nokia’s Adam Greenfield at Visualizar ’08 (Madrid, Spain) the day after the US elections.

Their conversation ranged widely over subjects including corporate Situationism, fear of ubicomp, the technological disparity between everyday life in the US and that in other parts of the world, and the odd and occasionally uncomfortable freedoms afforded anyone living in a culture to which they are not native.

Listen to interview: part 1 | part 2

(via Adam Greenfield)

26 September 2008

Is Adam Greenfield a communist or…?

Speedbird
Frankly, I don’t think so. But it’s a thought that provokes someone’s thinking, apparently.

Is Adam Greenfield A Communist Or…?” is the provocative title of an article by Jeroen Elstgeest (interaction designer at Informaat) on InfoDesign, who reflects on Adam Greenfield‘s keynote at the coming EuroIA Summit in Amsterdam.

“Adam said people are pulling back from social interaction because of technology (e.g. iPods, cell phones, etc.) and he likes to counter that with yet more technology? It’s true, you can fight fire with fire, if you do it right. Done wrong the fire gets bigger. Is this the right way?”

“In a sense, that makes him a socialist. He believes in an utopia. And like Ben said: “An utopia for one (single group) isn’t the utopia for society as a whole”, unless you enforce it in some way. Or put into other words, you could design it! Call in the interaction designers, whose natural tendencies are towards controlling everything, the whole user experience. But Adam won’t allow that, because he already recognized that trait and tries to neutralize it with three simple words: ‘Underspecify, underspecify and underspecify.’”

Further reading on Adam Greenfield: Hubert Guillaud’s article (in French) and Ethan Zuckerman’s piece on Greenfield’s talk at PICNIC 08.

Please note: The above article should be read in conjunction with this one.

7 May 2008

Chronic’Art interview with Adam Greenfield

Chronic Art
The French magazine Chronic’Art recently interviewed Adam Greenfield (Nokia’s new head of design direction) about his recent book Everyware and ubiquitous computing in general.

An English version of the interview can be found on Greenfield’s blog.

Read interview

21 March 2008

Adam Greenfield to be Nokia’s new Head of Design Direction

Adam Greenfield
Adam Greenfield, author of Everyware: The Dawning Age of Ubiquitous Computing, will be moving to Helsinki in August and begin his new role as “Head of Design Direction with Nokia’s design staff, with a remit for the service and user interface domain.”

Says Greenfield: ” I’ll be working on some terribly exciting and important problems, with people for whom I have a tremendous amount of admiration (and in many cases personal fondness of long standing), in a context where our efforts together might actually make a difference.”

Congratulations, Adam!

(via IntoMobile)

23 January 2007

Interview with Adam Greenfield on the user experience of ubiquitous computing

Adam Greenfield
Régine Debatty (of we-make-money-not-art) and Nicolas Nova (co-organiser of the upcoming LIFT conference) have together interviewed Adam Greenfield in which he focuses on the user experience of ubiquitous computing.

Greenfield is the principal of design consultancy Studies and Observations, and author of Everyware: The dawning age of ubiquitous computing. According to Wikipedia, Greenfield is generally considered to be a thought leader in the information architecture and user experience professions.

Here is Régine Debatty’s introduction:

“His latest book, Everyware: The Dawning Age of Ubiquitous Computing tells about what we can read in all the tech mags: computing without computers, everywhere, all the time and whithout us noticing it. For the first time however, someone who has observed the “ubicomp’d” life on several continents has put into a social, spatial, design and human context the consequences of this recent technology. I should also add that the book translates the working, meanings and implications of ubicomp into a very accessible language.

I still had a series of questions for Adam though. To be sure that i wouldn’t leave too many stones unturned, i asked Nicolas Nova to come to my rescue. Well… that’s the best excuse i could find to convince the guy who writes the only blog i would bring to a desert island to come and use wmmna space. Nicolas and i have both published the interview yet you’ll have to read the both of them to get the full picture: i posted some of his questions but not all of them and god knows what he’s done with mine ;-)”

I personally liked reading his answer to why designers should be involved with ubiquitous computing:

“If ubiquitous systems, products, and services are developed in the absence of careful, sensitive interaction design they fail. And they fail in a way that poses particular challenges and risks to the user’s sense of calm and equanimity, because by and large the interaction landscape of everyday life is very robust, very well-assimilated. We simply don’t expect the constituents of everyday experience to crash, lock up, or perform perversely or incoherently the way digital information technologies manifestly do. [...]

Someone with a commitment to the human being at the focus of these technologies, who’s been trained to weigh that person’s prerogatives heavily in the design of transactions, who has the experience to recognize and account for not merely this single system but the entire context in which it’s operating – that’s the person you want to include on your team if you expect your intervention to succeed. I can’t imagine why anybody serious about satisfying their users and customers would want it any other way.”

- Read interview on Régine’s site
- Read interview section on Nicolas’ site

12 January 2014

[Book] Design Transitions

Adobe Photoshop PDF

Design Transitions – Inspiring Stories. Global Viewpoints. How design is changing.
By Joyce Yee, Emma Jefferies and Lauren Tan
BIS Publishers
[Book site - Amazon link - selected pages]

Abstract

Design Transitions presents 42 unique and insightful stories of how design is changing around the world. Twelve countries are represented from the perspectives of three different communities: design agencies, organizations embedding design; and design academics.

Design Transitions takes you across the globe in search of the most innovative design practitioners, and their answers to the question ‘How are design practices changing?’ From small practices to vast corporations, the renowned to the lesser known: these are the stories of people working at the fringes of the traditional disciplines of design. They have opened up their design worlds to reveal the methods, tools and thinking behind their inspirational work. Some of the organizations and individuals featured includes: Droog, BERG, Fjord, thinkpublic, FutureGov, Hakuhodo Innovation Lab, DesignThinkers Group, INSITUM, Optimal Usability, frog Asia, Ziba, Banny Banerjee, Ezio Manzini, Carlos Teixeira and Adam Greenfield.

Design Transitions is divided into three sections:

  • Section I: Changing Practices features 25 stories from design practices in a range of disciplines.
  • Section II: New Territories features five organizations introducing and embedding design approaches into their core practice and operations.
  • Section III: Viewpoints features 12 interviews with leading design academics, offering additional insights and a critical perspective on the key themes that have emerged from our case studies and interviews.

Authors

Joyce Yee, PhD is a senior lecturer at UK’s Northumbria University’s Design School, teaching interaction, service and design methodologies across undergraduate and postgraduate levels.

Emma Jefferies, PhD is an independent design consultant and founder of Design Doctors.

Lauren Tan, PhD has worked as a designer in various capacities in graphic design, management consulting, service design and social design.

2 November 2013

Publication: Smart Citizens (by FutureEverything)

futureeverything

Smart Citizens
Edited by Drew Hemment and Anthony Townsend
Future Everything
2013, 96 pages

This publication aims to shift the debate on the future of cities towards the central place of citizens, and of decentralised, open urban infrastructures. It provides a global perspective on how cities can create the policies, structures and tools to engender a more innovative and participatory society. The publication contains a series of 23 short essays representing some of the key voices developing an emerging discourse around Smart Citizens.

Contributors include:

  • Dan Hill, Smart Citizens pioneer and CEO of communications research centre and transdisciplinary studio Fabrica on why Smart Citizens Make Smart Cities.
  • Anthony Townsend, urban planner, forecaster and author of Smart Cities: Big Data, Civic Hackers, and the Quest for a New Utopia on the tensions between place-making and city-making on the role of mobile technologies in changing the way that people interact with their surroundings.
  • Paul Maltby, Director of the Government Innovation Group and of the Open Data and Transparency in the UK Cabinet Office on how government can support a smarter society.
  • Aditya Dev Sood, Founder and CEO of the Center for Knowledge Societies, presents polarised hypothetical futures for India in 2025 that argues for the use of technology to bridge gaps in social inequality.
  • Adam Greenfield, New York City-based writer and urbanist, on Recuperating the Smart City.

FutureEverything is an art and digital innovation organization based in Manchester, England, founded in 1995 around an annual festival of art, music and digital culture. The organization runs year-round digital innovation labs on themes such as open data, remote collaboration, urban interface and environmental mass observation. FutureEverything presents an international art and innovation award, The FutureEverything Award, introduced in 2010.

6 September 2013

Thoughts on clever cities

20130907_FBD002_0

The multiplexed metropolis
Enthusiasts think that data services can change cities in this century as much as electricity did in the last one. The Economist – in a piece written by Ludwig Siegele, online business and finance editor, argues that they are a long way from proving their case.

The role of the citizen in the smart city
Technology has changed how we look at city infrastructure, raising the possibility of smart cities. Could it now change how city governments and citizens interact?
(With contributions by Dan Hill, Saskia Sassen, Usman Haque, William Perrin and Rick Robinson)

“Against the smart city” teaser
The smart city pretends to an objectivity, a unity and a perfect knowledge that are nowhere achievable, even in principle, argues Adam Greenfield.

12 December 2012

Are we becoming cyborgs?

ganov30cyborgs-articleLarge

Also the New York Times is turning up the cyborg theme, but luckily more intelligently than CNN.

All the technology and internet use has changed how we interact. But are we also changing what we are?

The New York Times put that question to three people who have written extensively on the subject, and brought them together to discuss it with Serge Schmemann, the editor of the NYT magazine.

The participants: Susan Greenfield, professor of synaptic pharmacology at Oxford. She has written and spoken widely on the impact of new technology on users’ brains. Maria Popova, the curator behind Brain Pickings, a Web site of “eclectic interestingness.” She is also an M.I.T. Futures of Entertainment Fellow and writes for Wired and The Atlantic. Evgeny Morozov, the author of The Net Delusion: The Dark Side of Internet Freedom. He is a contributing editor to The New Republic.

11 May 2012

Neurologist: Mobile technology is literally changing the way we think

Baroness-Susan-Greenfield

Leading neurologist Susan Greenfield tells Nokia Conversations that we need a new framework to make sense of our ‘mobile world’

Her argument is that mobile technology, and what we do with it, is now at the center of our family and social life, like the piano was for the Victorians and the TV was for baby boomers. But it’s even bigger than that, because it’s mobile, of course; so we not only do it at home, we do it at work – we do it everywhere.

“I don’t want to turn the clock back,” says Greenfield, “My concern is not that we have too much technology – but that we are not making the most of it.”

With huge increases in life expectancy, and demands for a better quality of life, we should be acutely aware of how we are harnessing technology for our own development.

Read article

12 October 2011

Video highlights from PICNIC Festival 2011

PICNIC
The videos of the presentations at PICNIC Festival 2011 (14-16 September, Amsterdam) are now online.

Jake Barton on Urban Collaboration and Storytelling
What will inspire and connect cities of the future?
At our core, we are linked together by the stories that we collectively tell. How can we create experiences that can bind us to each other, even as our technologies, economics and cultures are increasingly diverse and challenging?
Drawing on examples from the 9/11 Memorial Museum, Change By Us and the Frank Gehry-designed Eisenhower Memorial, Jake Barton explores collaboration at the urban scale.

V. H. Celaya and R. A. Celaya on Art to the People!
Victor Hugo Celaya and Ricardo Andrés Celaya are the founders of ARTO – Art Beyond Museums, which main objective is to take ART TO THE PEOPLE.
The Celaya brothers explore the power of art as a communication tool, an instrument to integrate cities and a vehicle for change. They discuss how disruption plays an essential role in making this happen. They share their experiences producing innovative art projects with the sole intent of promoting social inclusiveness and empowering people.

Lorenzo de Rita on The Best City Never Seen
It seems that history is full of cities thought up, imagined, and dreamed of, that were eventually never realized. Admirable projects, magnificent places, utopian plans… human fantasy has built many more cities than what we see on a map.
The Best City Never Seen is a 20-minute tour into the ruins of paleo-futuristic cities hoping to inspire a new way of thinking about cities and discovering the latent potential of the cities we now live in.

Adam Greenfield on Another City is Possible
So where do we find ourselves, after a solid decade of smart city rhetoric? What was promised to us, what has been delivered, what were the results, and what remains possible? Which cities have successfully capitalized on emergent technology, and which have made the wrong bets? Whose interests are reflected in smart city discourse, and whose have tended to be overlooked or pushed to the side?
This talk with Urbanscale founder and managing director Adam Greenfield aims to cleave hype from genuine potential, decode the claims currently being made for urban informatics, and lay out a set of criteria by which future proposals can be evaluated.

Ben Hammersley on Rioting, Ballet and Elvis’s Hips
Smart cities, ubicomp, and other technological wonders are all very well, but cities are made of people, and people are weird.
Ben Hammersley looks at how cultures and society change, how technology can outpace good manners, and how designers and makers can change the world without getting into a fight, punching an artist, or taking off their ballet shoes. Featuring music, silly jokes, some quantum physics, and no slides whatsoever!

Eric van Heeswijk and Jasper Koning on Holland from Above
Ever wondered if Holland runs like a clock, how does it look? And why doesn’t it go wrong? Holland from Above is a project from innovative Dutch broadcaster VPRO where cameras take the bird’s eye view on the Netherlands and discover the beauty of patterns and stories you have never heard before.
What makes the project even more special is the unique data visualization, for TV, but in an interactive form also on the web. Jasper Koning and Erik van Heeswijk explain why the VPRO wants to do this complex and labor intensive crossmedia project and let you peek behind the scenes.

Matthias Hollwich on the Aging City
We have to start a revolution! The way we age in America is inhumane and inadequate. We might live a good life after retirement, but the last three years are hell. There are 17,000 nursing homes in America, and 17,000 reasons to not move into any of them. The dignity of aging needs to be reinstated and we cannot do that by chasing eternal youth.
Matthias Hollwich, architect and co-founder of HWKN and Architizer, explores a new way for society to deal with aging, by outlining how we can pioneer our own future selves, and how architecture and urbanism can be re-engineered to support new living typologies, service proximities, and social relevance and space. Become part of the New Aging revolution and join the conversation!

Lawrence Lessig on Help U.S.
How are governments responding to the entitlement, engagement and sharing brought about by the Internet? How can policy “mistakes” be fixed in “high functioning democracies”?
Harvard law professor and Creative Commons founder Lawrence Lessig describes how policy errors in the United States are having unintended negative consequences and he implores “outsiders” to help US to correct its mistakes with balanced, sensible policy alternatives.

William McDonough / Green Challenge Keynote Lecture
Opening keynote lecture at the Green Challenge Award Ceremony by honorary jury chair and sustainability architect and author William McDonough.

Saskia Sassen on Urbanizing Technology

Scott Snibbe on Biophilia, An App Album
Media artist and developer Scott Snibbe present Björk’s Biophilia – the first app album – and discusses how the emergence of music apps for mobile devices promises to reacquaint listeners with an immersive, intimate music experience that has been lost in the age of the digital download. He will particularly share Björk’s view, which he enthusiastically embraces, on how technology can bring people closer to nature and music.

29 September 2010

UK campaign for inquiry into “mind change” caused by computers and internet

Lady Greenfield
The potential transformation of our brains caused by intensive use of computers and the internet is a threat to our quality of life on the same scale as risks to the planet from climate change, according to an eminent neuroscientist. The Financial Times reports.

“Lady Greenfield of Oxford University has stepped up her campaign for an inquiry into “mind change” caused by computers and the internet. [...]

Lady Greenfield said the possible benefits of modern technology included a higher IQ, better memory and quicker processing of information. But she is more worried about the potential negative side. For example, social networking sites might reduce the empathy that young people felt towards others; using search engines to find facts might hinder the ability to learn; and computer games in which it was possible to start from the beginning, no matter how many mistakes were made, might make us more reckless in our day-to-day lives, she said.”

Read article

8 July 2010

Towards a read/write urbanism

311 signs
Adam Greenfield, Nokia’s head of design direction for service and user-interface design, is the author of this week’s Urban Omnibus feature.

In the piece, he uses software design as a base to talk about the ways citizens call out trouble spots in the urban landscape and how we might redesign the performance of that landscape itself.

Read article

24 April 2010

Toward a read/write urbanism

Frameworks
What might we gain, asks Adam Greenfield, if we begin to conceive of cities, for some limited purposes anyway, as software under active development?

What if we imagined that the citizen-responsiveness system we’ve designed lives in a dense mesh of active, communicating public objects? Then the framework we’ve already deployed becomes something very different. To use another metaphor from the world of information technology, it begins to look a whole lot like an operating system for cities.

Provided that, we can treat the things we encounter in urban environments as system resources, rather than a mute collection of disarticulated buildings, vehicles, sewers and sidewalks. One prospect that seems fairly straightforward is letting these resources report on their own status. Information about failures would propagate not merely to other objects on the network but reach you and me as well, in terms we can relate to, via the provisions we’ve made for issue-tracking.

And because our own human senses are still so much better at spotting emergent situations than their machinic counterparts, and will probably be for quite some time yet to come, there’s no reason to leave this all up to automation.

Read article

8 February 2010

Microsoft Research Social Computing Symposium 2010

Microsoft Research Social Computing Symposium
For the past four years, Microsoft Research (MSR) has sponsored a symposium on social computing that “brings together academic and industry researchers, developers, writers, and influential commentators in order to open new lines of communication among previously disconnected groups.”

The theme of the 2010 symposium, held at ITP at NYU, was “The city as platform”, which revolved around various sub-topic such as urban informatics, the city as a social technology, pervasive games and government infrastructure/data.

Participants included Genevieve Bell, Julian Bleecker, Ben Cerveny, Tom Coates, Anil Dash, Russell Davies, Alexandra Deschamps-SonsinoAdam Greenfield, Liz Goodman, Usman Haque, Tom IgoeNatalie Jeremijenko, Steven Johnson, Matt Jones, Jennifer Magnolfi, Mike Migurski, Nicolas Nova, Ray Ozzie, Clay Shirky, Kevin Slavin, Molly Steenson, Linda Stone, Alice Taylor, Anthony Townsend, Duncan Wilson and many more.

You can read elaborate and well-written symposium reports by Nicolas Nova (LIFT Lab) and Dan Hill (City of Sound / ARUP).

By the way, do also check Dan Hill’s urbanistic take on the iPad.

1 February 2010

The Internet of things: Networked objects and smart devices

Networked objects
Constantine Valhouli, principal of the Massachusetts based Hammersmith Group, which consults to developers on the marketing and branding of luxury properties, and to city leaders on reviving historical downtowns, just published an overview of the potential for connected devices entitled “The Internet of things: Networked objects and smart devices.”

It quotes Rob Faludi, Julian Bleecker, Bruce Sterling, Adam Greenfield and covers devices from the WineM to Botanicalls to the Ambient Orb along with the original online coffee pot.

A variety of other research papers by the same author can be found on this site.

Download report

(via Mike Kuniavsky)

9 October 2009

Wired UK’s special feature on digital cities

Wired UK
Here are the five stories that appeared in the special “Digital Cities” feature of Wired UK’s November issue.

Words on the street
by Adam Greenfield
Ubiquitous, networked information will reshape our cities.

‘Sense-able’ urban design
by Carlo Ratti
Digital elements blanket our environment: transforming our cities, informing their citizens and improving economic, social and environmental sustainability.

London after the great 2047 flu outbreak
by Geoff Manaugh
After the Dutch flu outbreak of 2047 decimated greater London, the politics of the city began to change: everything turned medical.

Your neighbourhood is now Facebook Live
by Andrew Blum
When it comes to technology and cities, today’s thrilling development is that social networking is enhancing urban places [and this is] significant for the future of our cities.

The transport of tomorrow is already here
by Joe Simpson
The main impact on city planning will be mediated through transport infrastructures, freeing up road space as it does so.

9 October 2009

The city as an interaction platform

Picnic 2009
Martijn de Waal was at the Picnic 2009 conference in Amsterdam, where he attended the session entitled “The City as an Interaction Platform”:

Cities have always been about providing frameworks of services to improve the quality of life for residents and businesses. How will social networks, mobile devices, reactive environments, and cloud-based data services transform the experiences of living in cities in the coming years? What new municipal infrastructure will evolve to meet the needs of citizens looking for the type of real time information and configurability they have come to expect from Internet applications?

In his blog, de Waal writes that “first Ben Cerveny of Vurb sketched an optimistic view of the ‘cloud city’ – a future scenario in which citizens could get easy access to urban informatics and use those as the foundation for a blossoming civil society. Greg Skibiski of Sense Networks provided another optimist vision – be it based on a different paradigm – in which urban computing is used as the base of offering ever more personalized information and localization services for urbanites. Adam Greenfield however argued that when taken up in a certain way, the rise of urban computing might do urban culture more harm than good. What is at stake, he argued, are some of the essences of urban culture.”

Read full story