Scott Page is the founder of Interface Studio, a collaborative design office based in Philadelphia.
When recently working in a distressed community in Philadelphia, we were thinking of the best ways to communicate what we were planning for the area and guide residents toward local resources that exist but are rarely used. As a cost effective solution, we worked with the Klip Collective
to implement a video installation within a vacant storefront. The installation runs every evening. Besides providing some valuable information, we used the installation to instill some street activity along what was once an active commercial corridor.
Friday, September 23, 2005 - 10:48am PDT
Open source is not just about lowering costs. It's about staying in control of your own data. For governments, it is important to specify open file formats for storing public data. Eric Kriss, Massachussets' secretary of administration and finance asks an important question about long-term archiving of public documents created with Microsoft Office. "Will those documents still be legible 10 years from now, or in 50?" The state of Massachusetts has given some thought to that question and is taking action.
Thursday, September 22, 2005 - 9:20pm PDT
â€¦here comes Joomla. There was a lot of uncertainty about the future of the Content Management System Mambo over the past months. Finally the Developers now left Mambo and started Joomla.
As this article in eWeek
points out, "the original owners [Miro], wanted to regain control of the project. The developers, realizing that they were being cut out of executive management, decided to take the code and runâ€¦â€
The outcomes might describe the state of open source today.
Thursday, September 22, 2005 - 1:13pm PDT
Joel Garreau weighed in yesterday on whether New Orleans should (or can) be rebuilt. He's always smart and readable; if you haven't read Edge City
you should go get it. It's a brilliant, well-reported take on urban theory and how cities are changing. Anyway, here
Monday, September 12, 2005 - 12:55pm PDT
A Los Angeles Times article titled "Web Proves Its Capacity to Help in Time of Need
" documents the importance of the Web as a communications medium.
It reunited families and connected them with shelter. It turned amateur photographers into chroniclers of history and ordinary people into pundits. It allowed television stations to keep broadcasting and newspapers to keep publishing. It relayed heartbreaking tales of loss and intimate moments of triumph...
The Internet has played a larger and larger role in every major news event of the last 10 years...In the aftermath of Katrina, use of the Internet is more vital and varied than ever.
Sunday, September 11, 2005 - 10:57am PDT
Two stories in the New York Times'
science section today relevant to our game here. First, Dennis Overbye takes a historical trip to cities that died, here
. Good bits:
"Cities rise and fall depending on what made them go in the first place," said Peirce Lewis, an expert on the history of New Orleans and an emeritus professor of geography at Pennsylvania State University.
Changes in climate can make a friendly place less welcoming. Catastrophes like volcanoes or giant earthquakes can kill a city quickly. Political or economic shifts can strand what was once a thriving metropolis in a slow death of irrelevance. After the Mississippi River flood of 1993, the residents of Valmeyer, Ill., voted to move their entire town two miles east to higher ground.
What will happen to New Orleans now, in the wake of floods and death and violence, is hard to know. But watching the city fill up like a bathtub, with half a million people forced to leave, it has been hard not to think of other places that have fallen to time and the inconstant earth.
Tuesday, September 6, 2005 - 12:43pm PDT
Mapping enthusiasts are using Google Maps and Google Earth and other data to compile maps of the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina.
One Web site, www.scipionus.com, is combating the confusion by encouraging users to annotate a Google Map of New Orleans with information about specific locations. Collectively, the community is creating a collaborative map Wikipedia. Anyone with something to add can enter a street address and leave a marker on the map at that location, providing a few lines of text about conditions at that spot.
Friday, September 2, 2005 - 8:00am PDT
got a good response to their call for GIS volunteers
. All volunteer positions are now filled. Volunteers will be going to Jackson, Mississippi.
"Seven of the volunteers are map production experts. There is a lab in Jackson where they can start
their work with hardware and software ready to use. They have some data and more is coming. The
second group of volunteers will be in the field with GPS equipment. The group in Jackson will be
mapping the field data as soon as they can and hand it over to the emergency personnel."
Friday, September 2, 2005 - 7:19am PDT
Urban and Regional Information Systems Association's (URISA
) GISCorps coordinates volunteer GIS services to underprivileged communities. GISCorps
is looking for GIS professionals to volunteer for emergency and relief efforts in the region affected by Hurricane Katrina
"The immediate need is for 5-10 volunteers at this point. These volunteers must have enough GIS experience to work effectively in an emergency situation. Volunteers must have expertise in map production, performing analysis, data management, and etc. Expertise in disaster management and working with GPS equipment is highly desirable."
Thursday, September 1, 2005 - 1:30pm PDT
Let's take a moment for New Orleans, folks. Better coverage elsewhere -- check out Boing Boing
for links in the blogosphere. So here, you just get an observation: nature, abetted by dumb human decisionmaking, has killed that city.
In a lot of ways, New Orleans is -- maybe was -- a great place. Tremendous food and music. Like Las Vegas, it was a place where Americans kept their decadence, like a precious thing in a box. In Europe, every city and town blows up into a party Carnival; in the US, we keep our Carnivals going non-stop, 24/7, but they're geographically confined.
Wednesday, August 31, 2005 - 3:33pm PDT