// the dead pixel project An investigation into pervasive computing, sentient architecture and the changing nature of perception and interaction in urban public space. Robert Cameron independent design proposal
// the dead pixel project
// CONTENTS -
Relevant Quotes What? Why?, Project Framework How?, The Site Program & Site Constraints, Experiments - Projections, Deliverables - Timeline, Key References - Key References, Key Themes Relevant Technologies.
04/05 06/07 08/09 10/11 12/13 14/15 16/17 18/19
// if there is to be a â€œnew urbanismâ€? it will be the staging of uncertainty; it will no longer be concerned with the arrangement of more or less permanent objects but with the irrigation of territories with potential, the reinvention of psychological space. REM KOOLHAAS
// if, in phenomenological terms, space could be considered an environment that is activated through the perception of its subjects, then the use of technology to stimulate the senses would theoretically heighten this effect: it would awaken the body and catalyse new modes of inhabitation. ARIANE LOURIE HARRISON
// technology has often extended life experience beyond the scope of bodily schema. It has shifted organisation from space to time. As societal forces become higher dimensional and less visible, three dimensional spaces of experience seldom remain coherent. Much about modern life frustrates our body image imagination. MALCOLM MCCULLOUGH Living Light Pavilion - The Living, 2009
// the folding of people, street and data into one another requires thinking about space in nonvisual ways, where formal geometry and material articulation become less relevant than the topologies of networked information systems and their intersection with the socio-spatial practices of daily life. MARK SHEPARD // the wealth of the middle class has allowed them to segregate themselves socially, to physically surround themselves with people of their own liking, and thus retract from public life into their own parochial domains. This may in due time erode the capacity to empathise with others and the solidarity necessary to upkeep an inclusive urban society. RICHARD SENNETT
DAN HILL HtwoOexpo - NOX, 1997
// we canâ€™t see how the street is immersed in a twitching, pulsing cloud of data... This is a new kind of data, collective and individual, aggregated and discrete, open and closed, constantly logging impossibly detailed patterns of behaviour. The behaviour of the street.
// the dead pixel project WHAT? // In the last decade our experience of the city has become increasingly mediated by technologies that can augment our senses, provide us with context specific information and connect us to almost any other location on the planet. Worldwide, the pace of urbanization and the speed with which existing urban environments are changing is accelerating. This is creating a unique paradigm where architects and urban designers are being faced with situations where traditional design methods cannot account for the changing nature of public space. Changes that are being catalysed by the spread of new technologies. Technologies that were once limited to the devices that we could carry around in our pockets, are now becoming physically integrated with the built environment. Sensory systems integrated into urban objects and building materials broadcast their data into the public domain, while, on the reverse side, information can now be offloaded onto context through geo-tagging.
Chiastic Space - Richard Goodwin
All of this provides us with a phenomenal amount of live, contextual infomation that can be processed by our personal devices and relayed back to us in a number of different ways. A new layer of information is being written to the urban fabric on top
The dead pixel project is an investigation into the potential impacts of pervasive technological integration within our bodies and environments. The project will attempt to provide an insight into the forces at work in the city by engaging with context through a cross-disciplinary approach that incorporates elements of interactive design, software development, urban design and architecture. Throughout the course of the project I will attempt to juxtapose critical analysis of contextual data with design experiments that question how we might repurpose the urban environment in the future and, in doing so, change the ways that we perceive and interact with the urban fabric. // The project will consist of two major streams of investigation; 1) An experiment examining potential outcomes of autonomous cybernetic cognition within the public domain.
This will involve the development of tracking software that will become a tool for mapping the motion of actors through space. The experiment will function as a proof of concept for a number of technologies that may be utilised in the design process. Outcomes from this experiment will hopefully inform some of the ideas and designs that are developed in the second component.
2) A theoretical design proposal for Kings Square and the Myer building in Fremantle. This will include a design for a new facade system for the building and a new public domain. The design will aim to generate a framework that will give people the ability to interact with public space in new ways. Architecture will serve the role of facilitating relationships between different scales of experience within the space. In both investigative streams experiments with form, material, interactivity and fabrication will be juxtaposed with, experiments in use, program, access and urban reappropriation.
of that which was traditionally communicated through architecture. All of this is altering the ways that we interact with the public domain and each other.
WHY? // “Situated technology may help us manage the protocols, flows, ecologies and systems that form the basis of valued places; or it may add a layer of distrust, information glut, and experiential uniformity to them.” Malcolm McCullough Recently, controversy over use of technology to violate personal privacy has brought to light the potential consequences of its pervasive spread. The irrigation of technology into new territories has created a blurring of institutional frameworks. This has had far reaching implications for large segments of society. Increasingly, software is becoming an integral part of the urban environment. We are reaching a critical phase where prospective design methodologies will direct the future of our cities. The design of environments will be determined predominantly by those that have the ability to understand and effect the underlying software that controls the flow of information. The “sentient cities” of the future could become anything from utopian paradises to authoritarian dystopias.
Fun Palace, Cedric Price, 1963
My interest in this project stems from a desire to challenge the existing theoretical structures within the architectural profession. If architects are to influence the moral debate and avoid ceding design control to software developers, then this will be a necessary change.
// project framework EUCLIDEAN
PROGRAMMING, TECHNOLOGICAL ANXIETY, SUR-
ZIAN SPACE, BIOGRAMS, HYBRID SPACES, THE GENERIC PROGRAM, COGNITIVE MAPS, HYPERATTENTION, HYPERFIGURES, HYPERDIMENSIONALITY
SPATIAL DESIGN, COGNITION AND EXPERIENCE BRIAN MASSUMI ARAKAWA/GINS LARS SPUYBROEK TIM INGOLD SMOUT ALLEN MADELINE SCHWARTZMAN CAROLINE JONES
SYMPATHY, EMOTION, RELATION SYNESTHESIA, SYMPATHETIC RESONANCE, MUTANT ARCHITECTURE, PROSTHETIC ARCHITECTURE, ONTOGENESIS, AUTOPOESIS, INVOLUNTARY/ELICITED PERCEPTION
VEILLANCE, HACKING, TINKERING, FEEDBACK
RICHARD GOODWIN DAVID JIMISON JOO YOUN PAEK LEON VAN SHAIK NEIL HARBISSON
GREYWORLD WILLIAM J MITCHELL ARCHIGRAM ARIANE LOURIE HARRISON MARK BURRY PETER COOK STELARC CEDRIC PRICE NICOLAS SCHOFFER ITALO CALVINI JERRY HERRON KENT KLEINMAN GORDON MATTA-CLARK GEORGIA DASALAKIS OMAR PEREZ JANE JACOBS
LOOPS, POST-HUMANISM, NEW TECHNOLOGY, UBIQUITOUS VS PERVASIVE COMPUTING, CYBORGS, TELEPRESCENCE
SENTIENT CITIES/ INTERACTIVE DESIGN
MARK SHEPARD REM KOOLHAAS MALCOLM MCCULLOUGH MARTIJN DE WAAL BERNARD TSCHUMI DAN HILL THE LIVING
THE URBAN IMAGINARY, COLLECTIVE MEMORY, THE PUBLIC DOMAIN
SANTOS MUNNE PATRIK SCHUMACHER JON TARRY
THE ANTHROPOCENE, SPACE AS SOCIAL PRODUCT,
RICHARD SENNETT USMAN HAQUE
RECONFIGURATION, UTOPIANISM, NEO-LIBERALISM
VAGUE TERRAIN, URBAN RENEWAL, DEMOLITION,
PHENOMENOLOGY, TOPOLOGICAL VS
SPACE, STRANGE HORIZON, DEAD RECKONING, HERT-
HOW? // PREPARATION; prior to the beginning of the design phase I have improved my skills in programming to aid with the development of the interactive design elements of the project. I have also prepared a blog site for the documentation of my ideas, influences, designs and experiments. // ANALYSIS; progression of the project will require an informed approach to engaging with the site context. This will be achieved through the development of mapping systems, the diagramming of critical relationships and the accumulation of relevant site data. // ENGAGEMENT; engagement with the site will occur in two ways; the insertion of an interactive installation into the public domain over the course of the semester, and through the gradual development of the experimental and design streams of the project. // RECONFIGURATION; information that is gathered throughout the course of the project will be critically analysed and will be recombined to inform iterative reconfiguration of the design process. The Senster, Edward Ihnatowicz, 1960
THE SITE // In early 2013 Myer closed down operations of their store at Kings Square in Fremantle. The city of Fremantle currently has plans to sell a number of key sites adjoining Kings Square to the owner of the building, Sirona Capital. This has been framed as part of a major urban renewal project for the precinct.
MYER BUILDING KING SQUARE
In the intermediary period before the handover of the site a temporary lease has been given to Post Architecture who have been planning a set of alternative programs and design alterations for the building. This is a unique situation for an independent group to be given control of a building of this scale, and in such an important location. The success of this program could have a major impact upon the future use and alteration of the building depending on its ability to generate interest and activate the space.
King Square, 2013
I wish to situate my project as a hypothetical imagining of how the site could be used in the future. The design of the new facade and public domain would aim to generate a strong relationship with the functional program of the building and also with its wider context.
PROGRAM AND SITE CONSTRAINTS // FUNCTIONAL REQUIREMENTS
- New building facade - Design of architectural and landscape interventions into the public domain.
// KEY SPATIAL RELATIONSHIPS Within the project; - Building skin and public domain. - Building skin and interior function. - Interior function and public domain. External relationships to the project; - The individual (conscious, subconscious) - The immediate context - The extended context - The urban imaginary - Hertzian space // CONSTRAINTS
Kings Square, 1930â€™s
- Given the time frame of this project the scope will be limited to the design of the building facade and the public domain. Some speculation may be made in to the function and design of the interior spaces that adjoin the western facade.
- The proposal will aim to examine the limits of what current technologies can achieve and given the theoretical nature of the proposal it will not be concerned with budgetary and planning limitations.
EXPERIMENTS // Prior to this semester I have been developing a program called â€œDead Reckoningâ€?. The program is designed to isolate motion from a video feed and trace the paths of actors in space. I have been experimenting with the idea of using this program as a means of mapping the city site. Hopefully, the information that is gathered by the program will reveal an insight into not only the amount of people using a space over time, but also what types of motion occur.
Dead Reckoning - King St Studio, 13/08/02
There are a few potential outcomes for this experiment that I can see. Firstly, by using the program as a mapping tool in Kings Square I hope to gain an insight into how my designs might be able to react upon different behaviours. Secondly I am working to connect the software to a drawing machine I have built and create an installation in the public domain. The machine will draw the paths that people make in the space. This will effectively turn the space into an interactive canvas. It will be interesting to see what kinds of emergent behaviour might develop as a result of this. Thirdly, I would like to expand the ability of the program to use a kinect camera to develop three-dimensional topologies of motion in the public domain. This data could then be connected to an actuated building facade that would sympathetically react to the motion of people in its field of vision.
PROJECTIONS // My hope is that at some point during the project the experiments and theoretical designs will develop into propositions for realistic urban interventions. These interventions could aim to address particular problems that exist in the urban fabric of Fremantle. Given the nature of the technology that is being explored the scales of relation that the project can engage with extend far beyond the immediate context of the site. The scope of the project is limited to a couple of design elements but the ways in which those elements could be integrated into a sentient interface are incredibly vast. At the moment I am investigating the idea of sympathetic relationships and how people might have a more emotional connection to an urban space because of the way that it reacts to their prescence. This could be achieved by designing architectural elements that are programmed to react to data from cybernetic mapping systems. The systems would read the emotion of actors based on their metadata and the ways that they move. The structures would then respond through sensory interaction (light, sound, proprioception) and through kinetic elements.
Dead Reckoning- Dancers watching while being watched, August, 2013
While the scope of this project will be limited strictly to the constraints that I have set out, the work that I develop could potentially extend past the limits of the independent design program and into further projects and research.
DELIVERABLES Here are some ideas about what the submission may contain at the end of the semester;
// STREAM 1 - THE EXPERIMENT
research writings sketches diagrams photographs drawings simulations
- software components - processing sketches - executable programs - hardware components - machines - models, prototypes - site installations
// STREAM 2 - THE DESIGN
research writings mapping photographs diagrams
- videos - animations - physical models - virtual models - drawings (ie. 1:1000, 1:100, 1:50, 1:20)
The design process will be documented and then published online at the project blog. www.thedeadpixelproject.tumblr.com Smout Allen, Landscapes
TIMELINE 10 20.07.2013
pre-semester prep; website, programming, research
brief generation, site analysis.
site model, mapping diagrams
design dev of public domain
design dev of facade
sentient systems design
80 x.x.2013 animation, modelling, programming
Nicolas Schoffer, CYSP-1, 1956
// KEY REFERENCES BOOKS; 1. Ariane Lourie Harrison, Architectural Theories of the Environment - Posthuman Territory,(New York: Routledge; 2013)
10. Lars Spuybroek, Vital Beauty - Reclaiming Aesthetics in the Tangle of Technology and Nature, (Rotterdam, V2 Publishing; 2012)
2. Blaine Bronwell, Transmaterial, (New York, Princeton Architectural Press; 2006)
11. Madeline Schwartzman, See Yourself Sensing - Redefining Human Perception, (London, Black Dog; 2011)
3. Brian Massumi, Parables for the Virtual, (Duke University Press; 2002)
11. Mark Burry, Scripting Cultures, (West Sussex, John Wiley and Sons; 2011)
4. Caronline A. Jones, Sensorium - Embodied experience, Technology, and Contemporary Art, (MIT Press; 2006)
12. Mark Shepard, Sentient City - Ubiquitous computing, architecture, and the future of urban space, (Cambridge, MIT Press; 2011)
4. Daniel Schiffman, Learning Processing, (Morgan Kauffman; 2008)
13. Patrik Schumacher, The Autopoesis of Architecture, (West Sussex, Wiley; 2011)
5. Georgia Daskalakis, Charles Waldheim, Jason Young, Stalking Detroit, (Actar; 2001)
14. Paul Rodgers and Michael Smyth, Digital Blur â€“ Creative Boundaries of Architecture, Design, and Art, (Oxfordshire, Libri Publishing; 2010)
7. Italo Calvino, Invisible Cities, (Giulio Einaudi, 1974) 8. John Carey, The Faber Book of Utopias, (London, Faber and Faber; 1999) 9. Lars Spuybroek, NOX, (New York, Thames and Hudson; 2004)
15. Malcolm McCullough, Digital ground : architecture, pervasive computing, and environmental knowing, 16. Michael Margolis, Arduino Cookbook, (Oâ€™Reilly Media Inc.; 2011)
6. Greg Borenstein, Making Things See, (Sebastapol, Make Books; 2012)
1. Arakawa + Gins, http://www.reversibledestiny.org/
1. Lars Spuybroek, “the sympathy of things” @ Faculty of Architecture, University of Innsbruck 2012, http://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=CfAgl4dhuFs
2. Experiments in Motion, http://www.experimentsinmotion.com/motion-gallery/ 3. Hackaday, http://www.hackaday.org 4. Interactive Architecture, http://www.interactivearchitecture.org/ 5. Kinetic Architecture, http://vanguarq. wordpress.com/2009/06/25/kinetic-architecture-22/ 6. New Territories, http://www.new-territories.com/blog/
2. Neil Harbisson: I listen to color, TED Talks, July 2012, http://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=ygRNoieAnzI 3. Stelarc, Stelarc at The University of Warwick, June 2011, http://www.youtube.com/ watch?v=yA-371qDwBg ARTICLES; 1. Neil Leach, HyperHabitat - Reprogramming the World, Architectural Design, Vol 79, No.4, 2009
7. OPEN TSPS, http://www.opentsps.org 8. Prosthetic Knowledge, http://www.prostheticknowledge.tumblr.com 9. Responsive Architecture, http://fishtnk. com/responsivearchitecture/ 10. The Living, http://www.thelivingnewyork. com/ 11. Vague Terrain, http://vagueterrain.net/
2. Lucy Bullivant, Softspace: The Emergence of Interactive Design Installations, Digital Blur 2010 3. Mark Shepard, On Hertzian Space and Urban Architecture, January 2010, http://vagueterrain.net/journal16/mark-shepard/01 4. Martin Bechthold, The Return of the Future - A Second Go at Robotic Construction, Architectural Design, No.206, 2010
// RELEVANT TECHNOLOGIES
- sentience - agency(architectural, biological, digital) - hacker culture, tinkering - cybernetics, network city - the anthropocene - hertzian Space - post-humanism - cybernetics - utopianism/anti-utopianism - heterotopias - hybrid spaces - collective memory - the urban imaginary - space as a social product - cognitive ergonomics - architectural agency - ambient awareness - typological abstraction. - ubiquitous vs pervasive computing - emergent behaviour - interactive design - responsive place - embodied environmental perception - vague terrain - strange horizon, dead reckoning - synesthesia, biograms - mutant, cyborg, prosthetic architecture - technological anxiety, surveillance - emotion, resonance, sympathy - cyber-synesthetic terrain - involuntary and elicited perception
- cheap processing (arduino/ raspberry pi) - sensors( light,sound, touch, etc.) - actuators - the internet of things - consumer technology (mobile phones, mp3 players, tablet pcs, laptops etc.) - location based services, (GPS, google maps, foursquare etc.) - geo tagging - rapid prototyping (3d printing, laser cutting etc.) - cloud storage. - context aware media, datamining - RFID, hypertext labelling - social media services - display technologies (projection, augmented reality) - prosthetic implants - teleprescence - CCTV, surveillance, facial recognition - drones - brain wave monitoring - wearable computing - wireless transmission - data mining - crowd sourcing
// KEY THEMES