Daily Diigo Public Link 01/01/2008

December 31, 2007 at 5:39 pm | In links | 3 Comments

Toronto’s year of living large – and tall (Toronto Star) Annotated

“Love it or hate it, the ROM Crystal signalled the return of ambition to our architectural stage” — Christopher Hume on the change(s) in the role of buildings, public architecture, and public perceptions around the values of public space.

Sybil Wa: Architect (Toronto Star) Annotated

– interesting article about a young architect who talks the talk and walks the walk: she works on highrises and downtown buildings, and lives d/t in a highrise with her young daughters and husband (families *can* live in condos d/t).

Daily Diigo Public Link 12/31/2007

December 30, 2007 at 5:39 pm | In links | Comments Off on Daily Diigo Public Link 12/31/2007

Most Admired Knowledge City — MAKCi — Awards

– the English in this PDF is really difficult to plow through — you can tell it was written by non-native speakers, who commit all the sins: bureaucratic language overly reliant on passive voice; overburdened sentences that (due to passive voice) avoid having a proper subject; academic pedanticisms, etc. But otherwise possibly a useful reference (maybe). Via CEOs for Cities.

A Streetcar of Solace Is Back in New Orleans – New York Times Annotated

Adam Nossiter reports on the St.Charles line (downtown/ French Quarter / uptown connector), back in action in New Orleans. Many useful references for public space, urban fabric connections, lived history experiences. (via CEOs for Cities blog)

Daily Diigo Public Link 12/30/2007

December 29, 2007 at 5:39 pm | In links | Comments Off on Daily Diigo Public Link 12/30/2007

» Chicago Spire – Das höchste Wohnhaus der Welt … – architekturvideo.de – Das Video-Blog für Architektur, Stadtplanung und Immobilien

Four and a half minute video of Santiago Calatrava’s planned “Chicago Spire” (also called “Fordham Spire”), which will be the tallest residential building in the world. Looks beautiful — as does Chicago.

Book review: Hyper-Border: The Contemporary U.S.-Mexico Border and Its Future

Regine Debatty’s review of *Hyper-Border: The Contemporary U.S.-Mexico Border and Its Future* by Fernando Romero includes many interesting extracts. Eg.: (p.76) At present there are more American border patrol agents than soldiers in Afghanistan.; (p.106) In 2004, remittances to Mexico equaled $16.6 billion, in 2005 they reached $20 billion and in 2006 they rose higher to $24 billion becoming the second source of US dollars after oil exports.; (p.175) … most economists [agree?] that immigrants actually represent a net positive for the economy, meaning that overall, at the federal level, they pay more in taxes than they acquire in services. Whether they are sales, gasoline, property, or social security taxes, as people residing in the United States, undocumented immigrants contribute to the tax system just as legal workers do.; (p.193) Although Mexico is the number one source of immigrants into the U.S., it ranks seventh in foreign enrollments in U.S. universities.; (p.226) Nearly 40,000 people who live in Tijuana commute every weekday across the border to work in San Diego and surrounding areas.

Daily Diigo Public Link 12/29/2007

December 28, 2007 at 5:39 pm | In links | Comments Off on Daily Diigo Public Link 12/29/2007

BankART: Creating Art Spaces in Yokohama: PingMag – The Tokyo-based magazine about “Design and Making Things”

– description of re-purposed spaces (esp’y banks no longer in use) for creative space (Yokohama)

Technology Review: Mapping Professional Networks

– more on reality mining…?

Portable Objects in Three Global Cities: The Personalization of Urban Places (PDF)

The abstract: “The mobile phone has become the central node of the ensemble of portable objects that urbanites carry with them as they negotiate their way through information-rich global cities. This paper reports on a study conducted in Tokyo, Los Angeles, and London where we tracked young professionals’ use of the portable objects. By examining devices such as music players, credit cards, transit cards, keys, and ID cards in addition to mobile phones, this study seeks to understand how portable devices construct and support an individual’s identity and activities, mediating relationships with people, places, and institutions. Portable informational objects reshape and personalize the affordances of urban space. Laptops transform cafés into personal offices. Reward and membership cards keep track of individuals’ use of urban services. Music players and mobile devices colonize the in-between times of waiting and transit with the logic of personal communications and media consumption. Our focus in this paper is not on the relational communication that has been the focus of most mobile communication studies, but rather on how portable devices mediate relationships to urban space and infrastructures. We identify three genres of presence in urban space that involve the combination of portable media devices, people, infrastructures, and locations: cocooning, camping, and footprinting. These place-making processes provide hints to how portable devices have reshaped the experience of space and time in global cities.”

Locative_Commons.pdf (application/pdf Object)

– 5-page PDF by Marc Tuters; relates to / mentioned in Mobile City blog entry on locative media/ Starbucks vs. Boulevard culture, urbanism. “At stake is not only setting the terms for public access to the vast databases of open source information but constructing the sustaining architecture to do so. If in the construction of the public nation state, the 19th Century was defined by railroads and early tele-communications networks and 20th Century the development of the social safety nets, then the 21st Century will be recognised for making available the digital domains to the public at large in the tradition of furthering our concept and implementation of democracy.”

Mimi Ito – Statics: Portable Objects in Three Global Cities: The Personalization of Urban Places

– portal page to PDF on locative media, chapter for “The Reconstruction of Space & Time through Mobile Communication Practices”

The Mobile City » Blog Archive » Towards a Starbucks-urbanism? Annotated

– discussion of Starbucks coffee house culture as locative networked culture where people “camp” with their media (laptop etc) to work, network, inform themselves — but they’re not by a long shot isolating themselves from other people. In fact, they choose these locations b/c of what they offer in terms of ambience, connection with others, feel, and culture. Calls into question Habermas’s bleak assessment of the death of coffee house culture…

Retailing | Birth, death and shopping | Economist.com Annotated

Interesting article (can’t figure out who the author is), which traces the history of the mall via Victor Gruen through to “lifestyle centre” rebirth (Rick Caruso). Eg: “Just as the onward march of malls began to seem unstoppable, though, things began to go wrong. In just a few years they turned from temples of consumption to receptacles for social problems.” = which parallels what happened to city cores previously.

Daily Diigo Public Link 12/28/2007

December 27, 2007 at 5:39 pm | In links | 1 Comment

La dolce vita turns sour as Italy faces up to being old and poor – Times Online Annotated

– relates to my blog entry Dec.23/07,”High Rents=Mamma’s Boys?” Interesting comments thread, with many agreeing w/ article, others saying that it’s not so bad. In either case, stagnation seems to be setting in (symptom of what?, political corruption?, more than that?). Sounds like a Donna Leon mystery come to life (as fiction, that’s great, but as reality, that’s not a compliment…).
One of the comments came from http://www.ilquiquiri.com/ who pointed to (his?) YouTube video of his region festering under the garbage strike (see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n6gpnIK-W…) : very graphic.

The world goes to town | Economist.com Annotated

– article published in May 2007; “After this year the majority of people will live in cities. Human history will ever more emphatically become urban history, says John Grimond.” Rural contribution to human progress has been slight compared to urban contributions.

Daily Diigo Public Link 12/27/2007

December 26, 2007 at 5:39 pm | In links | Comments Off on Daily Diigo Public Link 12/27/2007

Goodbye to the Mall | varnelis.net

– review of The Economist article on Victor Gruen, the birth of the mall, the death of urban centres, the rebirth of urban centres, and the rebirth of the mall (now lifestyle centre) as envisioned by Rick Caruso; this blog entry is choc-a-bloc full of excellent additional links, too.

BLDGBLOG: Planet Battery Annotated

BLDBLG reports on an article in Nature (magazine) that the “Earth beneath our feet might act as a gigantic circuit built by microbes to power their metabolic systems.” Reminds me of Thomas Gold’s theories.

“Schoolhouse Rock” – WSJ OpinionJournal Annotated

– profile/ overview of Michelle Rhee, the D.C. schools chancellor who’s rocking the traditional bureaucratic boat of public schooling:
“She says she keeps hearing from worried city council members that some teachers and administrators are frightened of her. They are feeling pressure and that’s a problem. Her answer? Get used to it. ‘I’m going to hold people accountable and I’m going to hold their feet to the fire. If they’re feeling pressure–good! I feel pressure every day because I have the education of 49,000 kids in my hands.'”
– I say go for it, and damn all the complaining from some sectors. Any time a bureaucracy serves primarily itself instead of its clients/ constituents, it needs a wake up kick in its nether regions, as well as a major dismantling. You can’t decentralize centrally (Marshall McLuhan, paraphrased).

Daily Diigo Public Link 12/26/2007

December 25, 2007 at 5:39 pm | In links | Comments Off on Daily Diigo Public Link 12/26/2007

Pew Internet: Teens and Social Media Annotated

The portal page for the report that CEOs for Cities linked to. “There is a subset of teens who are super-communicators — teens who have a host of technology options for dealing with family and friends, including traditional landline phones, cell phones, texting, social network sites, instant messaging, and email. They represent about 28% of the entire teen population and they are more likely to be older girls.”

CEOS for Cities – Conversations – CEO Blog – Do “Disadvantaged” Kids Have More to Say?

– blog entry provides links to a Pew Internet & American Life Project report; among other things, as per CEOs for Cities write-up, “teens from single-parent families are more likely to have started a blog than teens living with married parents.” Also, girls are more likely to blog/ engage.

Daily Diigo Public Link 12/25/2007

December 24, 2007 at 5:39 pm | In links | Comments Off on Daily Diigo Public Link 12/25/2007

Waterfront plan: A magnet and, hopefully, model (Toronto Star) Annotated

Dutch landscape architect Adriaan Geuze’s vision for T.O.’s waterfront: “The point must be that we won’t have to live on the waterfront to feel at home there.” In this article by Christopher Hume, some really interesting discussion (by Geuze) about cars, how they’ve taken over urban spaces, why all-pedestrian zones aren’t necessarily a good idea (“scary at night”), and that cities today compete with one another.

Hoover Planned Mass Jailing in 1950 – New York Times Annotated

The title says it all. I’m an American citizen, and Hoover’s ilk just makes me sick. What an unbelievable pig he was, and how shockingly he treated American citizenship… Today we have Bush Jr and his cronies following in Hoover’s wake: “Habeas corpus, the right to seek relief from illegal detention, has been a fundamental principle of law for seven centuries. The Bush administration’s decision to hold suspects for years at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, has made habeas corpus a contentious issue for Congress and the Supreme Court today.” Pfui, J. Edgar Hoover, and pfui to all your ilk.

The Queen claims own YouTube channel (toronto star) Annotated

I wonder if Charles would have come up with this?
“The Queen, considered an icon of traditionalism, launched her own special Royal Channel on YouTube on Sunday. (…) ‘The Queen always keeps abreast with new ways of communicating with people,’ Buckingham Palace said in a statement. ‘The Christmas message was podcast last year.’ The palace said, ‘She has always been aware of reaching more people and adapting the communication to suit. This will make the Christmas message more accessible to younger people and those in other countries.'”
– the original 1957 TV broadcast is up, and worth watching.

PingMag – The Tokyo-based magazine about “Design and Making Things” » Archive » Mafuyu’s Knitted Homes Annotated

– this is terrific: Mafuyu Murakami knits, passionately. She knits all kinds of beautiful things, including houses you can wear. Really. Reminded me of a line in The Avengers’ episode, “Something Nasty in the Nursery”: Steed & Mrs.Peel have to burst in on The Arkwright Knitting Circle, run by an ex-CEO who directs a dozen grandmothers in knitting projects. “What are they knitting?” Steed asks casually as he & Emma chase the bad guy. “A bungalow,” answers the shaken Mr. Arkwright. Mafuyu, needless to say, is way past the starter bungalow stage already!

Daily Diigo Public Link 12/24/2007

December 23, 2007 at 5:39 pm | In links | Comments Off on Daily Diigo Public Link 12/24/2007

Harvard Institute of Politics Poll Find Youth Favor Obama, Giuliani Annotated

– so much for the myth of disengaged youth; most are paying attention, and they’re not happy with what the traditiional parties are dishing up. I think this also indicates unhappiness with the parties’ neglect of urban issues.

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