The lecture is conducted from the mic into the speaker

Beginning today at ITP: Urban Computing, Round II, for this the Spring semester of 2008:

Think about cities in terms of their physical components: walls, windows, markets, streets and neighborhoods, for example. At every scale, these are transformed when the air itself carries fantasies, suggestions, directions and lies, information and misinformation. Now the streets can summon up the world, and to a certain degree, the world can conjure the streets. This is not what urban planners were planning for.

This is an experimental class, focused on the consideration of contemporary practices, theory, and student work. The goal is to find a framework for the ways that our work affects and transforms our urban experience – and vice versa – and to consider the urban architectonic as a platform for computation in itself. Ubiquitous computing, Big Games, and mobile social networking are some of the practices that fit comfortably in the room. This seminar requires weekly readings, field reports, and active participation in the class and with New York City. Three assignments are given to apply these principles, appropriate to individual interests and pursuits.

Kevin and I have another overflow crowd on our hands, apparently, and we’ll once again face the challenge of somehow compressing all of the complexity, vitality and diversity inherent to the subject into a mere thirteen sessions. It should be a lot of fun. You can follow along by using urbancomputing tags on Flickr and del.icio.us; I’ll post the course reading list in comments just as soon as I’ve put the final touches on it.

Students interested in getting a jump on coursework can find the very first assigned reading here. Drill through that and you’ll have a sound overview of many of the themes and concerns we’ll be raising.

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