An Open Source "SimCity" for New York

"Betaville" is a virtual New York where users can experiment with the built environment and how new buildings will look in the cityscape.

Reporter Jill Colvin writes that "Betaville" users "can alter the map, moving buildings and adding new ones, as well as roads, bridges, parks and public art.

Other users can then weigh in, adding comments and proposing changes, or upload variations of their own."

The development team sees the tool specifically as a way to collaborate on urban planning virtually. The manifesto on the project site states that they hope the tool will "promote awareness and experience of open-source software development for collaborative design, participatory planning, and new practices in public art. "

Full Story: Developers Unveil 'SimCity' Style Tool for Urban Planning

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