three ideas: noise mapping / conflict awareness / cross nearest boundary

Three ideas (rather quickly and messily described below):

1) I’m still interested in noise. Official noise complaints mark the contested spaces within the city. I did this map of sound complaints for the Noise Radio project. It shows all the locations of noise complaints throughout the city.

Drawn in Processing, this map takes the City’s noise complaint database and posts it to a typical base map. Nothing radical, but it did illustrate a point that Jesse Shapins’ work shares: that the city is a read/write database.

Shapins writes that he aspires to “open up the static database of the city’s image.” Noise Radio allows you to experience these as spaces in the urban environment, walking triggers the sounds. An idea may be to have the path of the listeners to Noise Radio draw a course through the map. Viewers of the map could then compose alternative soundtracks for these paths. These alternative soundtracks, noise abatement soundtracks, could be played by walking the streets.

2) What if you received notifications of the proximity of conflict incidents in another part of the world? Inspired by You Are Not Here and BBC’s How Big Really, this project would overlay a city or region within a conflict zone and map it to your city. The notification would inform you how far away the disaster was – drawing on location based services (such as foursquare), the service could inform you whether one of the locations you frequent was near the incident. This would be similar to projects such as israelinsider’s security monitor or Al Jazeera’s War on Gaza monitor with the exception that it contextualizes the data to the viewer’s present space.

3) As an extension of my thesis project, I’m intrigued by the idea of a simple app that invites you to cross the nearest geo-political border (neighborhood, city, county, state, national). Although I haven’t looked too much into it, I suspect that militant divisions of us versus them are supported by spatial boundaries that just are not crossed. Crossing the border may be the first step in changing, challenging, eroding antagonism for others.

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Categories: Reflective Posts

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