Archive for May, 2010

00pen-source

May 27, 2010

00:/ is hard at work on a new Web2.0 platform for open-source urban planning… ‘EDIT’ (Everybody Doing It Together) will be a web-app offering members of the public the opportunity to propose interventions and improvements to their local neighbourhoods, and provide them with the tools to realise those proposals through collaboration and sharing of resources. In many ways EDIT is a mash-up between Kickstarter, The School of Everything, and FixMyStreet… (just three examples of the plethora of collaborative, enabling, and engagement-based tools the internet is throwing up within the framework of our emerging civic economy).

At its heart, EDIT will be about empowerment – subverting the traditional idea that we are powerless to affect the public realm, and must rely entirely on local authorities to maintain and improve our neighbourhoods. Moreover EDIT will attempt to bridge the gap between surplus capacity within the community and aspirations for real action amongst community activists. We hope that EDIT will eventually provide an outlet for local councils to engage with the dreams and proposals of local people, and furthermore offer them the opportunity to release public funds and support to community action groups to enable positive change, thereby reducing their own resource burdens.

We are currently hard at work putting together a first (alpha) version of the software, and hope to have a beta ready for release over the coming months. The platform is being built on the excellent Cappuccino framework. In addition to working through use-cases, various iterations of interface and the like, we have also been doing some coding from ground up – and feel it is in the spirit of the very civic economy we hope to service to release (at least some!) snippets from time to time…

We have launched an official 00:/ github account (http://github.com/architecture00). Github is an amazing resource allowing software developers to share code and collaborate in evolving their output – it is founded on relatively simple principles of versioning (git repositories specifically), but through its communication potential and some very clever visualizations facilitates an incredibly efficient workflow. We will hopefully be using our account as a platform for sharing all sorts of software developments in future (…along with edit we have ideas about a version of github’s own network graph, for use as a journey catalogue through strategic decision making and project development… about which more later)!

It may still be early days, but watch this space.

NI

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collaborative consumption

May 24, 2010

Collaborative Consumption Grouondswell video via shareable.net

A great little film on collaborative consumption explaining (at break neck speed) the benefits of a of we-economics approach to consumption. The tagline is if the 20th Century was all about hyper consumption (ie zombie consumers buying cheap plastic from china and then paying them by the boatload to take back the same cheap palstic) to a 21st century collaborative consumption ie reintroducing sharing, bartering, exchanging upstream and downstream of goods all enabled by peer to peer platforms. So the pitch goes – it is not what, but how we consume. Does this mean we really can have it all? Seasonal fads and goodies, that we only use once a year – but shared between 365 people around us. Hmmm. I like the premise of the idea – the benefits of a product ie its service, without the need to own the product. Does this make consumption “more” viable? I’d like to naively think the answer is yes – because what the peer to peer platforms enable is the capacity to build “communities” – of identity, interest, ethic, practice…butthe question for us is – how does this behaviour translate beyond consumption into collaborative communities. If we can learn to play nice with each other, can we learn to create and make nicely together?

A few soundbites borrowed from the film…

Did you know that the fastest growing form of transportation is bike sharing?

Did you know that as the 3 big US car companies were being bailed out there was a 51.5% increase in car sharing membership?

Did you know freecycle has 7 million members across 86 countries? (and the 3rd most searched environmental term…before Earth in 4th place!)

Anyhow – you don’t need me to recount this – watch the video.Share the video. and perhaps that spare blender in your kitchen cupboard that’s been gathering dust.

AF

health service design

May 17, 2010

How do you tackle the increasing pressures on A&E departments when the local residents are a highly transient population?

Our Total design strategy for 21c Neighbourhood Healthcare institution to be delivered in London – more news soon…

AF

Rethinking Community | Do Dream Pledge

May 10, 2010

A draft of our current thinking on neighbourhood development powered by the community told through animation here. How might our neighbourhoods be if the ideas and resources were crowd sourced from by the community “do”-ing instead of an outside developer imposing a way of living and doing in cookie cutter fashion? How might a people be inspired to “dream” if the amazing stories within their communities were made known to them – to understand that it is ordinary people that can make change happen? In a time of low resources, how could a community come together and “pledge” to regenerate itself  through the power of the masses? We think this is a future worth shaping – one in which dreams of the community drive a sense of place from the ground up to rebuild our neighbourhoods in a way that empowers people and enables the community to be active citizens.

AF

PS. We’re trying this medium out following the success of our animation at the World Architecture Forum last year. Expect to see a few more 00:/ productions. In the meantime, hope you enjoy this…

visualising debt

May 10, 2010

Some thoughts on visual communication. Great graphic on debt in the EU made me think – access to information has not been the main barrier to advancing ideas for a long time. Meanwhile our ability to coherently string together complex information with a powerful narrative – one that can show nuances and interdependencies of a system has become more unique.  Communicating information in this way iha played a large part in our work methodologies – call it what you will, a mind map, ecolog map, blue print, systems architecture…the point is the increasing need to be able to stitch together complex information from different sources and summarise in a way that allows the reader to:

1 – see the whole picture and therefore place pieces of information in context

2 – read hierarchies of information that allow interdependencies to be visible

3 – understand the range of inputs and affects that communicate the nuances in the story

4 – by showing the whole journey, create the space for the reader to be part of it, unlike an excel spreadsheet or text document.

AF

P.E.A.R. Issue II – Mapping Urban Territory article

May 10, 2010

the Paper for Emerging Architectureal Research asked us to write an article for their Issue II after we took part in the Architecture Foundation’s IST-LON exchange programme last year. for more on P.E.A.R. see http://www.pearmagazine.eu/P.E.A.R/Cover.html — and for the full article, go to the blog and click on the link below:

PEAR-II_JB

JB