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Connectivity can be thought of as various scales, times, and mediums, from interpersonal communication and encounters, transportation systems, media, technology, and more. All of the aspects of connectivity affect human psychology and interaction. These effects in turn reinforce all aspects of the development of human society today. In the city, connectivity is seemingly at its peak. The city is dense, everything is readily available, anyone can get anywhere, yet the connection between people has evolved to where proximity is hardly a necessary factor for determining relationships. People no longer know who lives in the apartment to their right or their left. High connectivity also leads to high selectivity and a higher demand for efficiency. Increasing connectivity and especially the increase of the ability to remain connected yet anonymous in the city through various form of media seem to be leading towards “less� connectivity between people to people within their physical experiences. Globalization is a result of connectivity. People have become deeply dependent on technology in their homes and offices. When things become so connected, the failure of one component will bring about a chain reaction of failures.

CONNECTIVITY Cities Without Ground A Hong Kong Guidebook Adam Frampton Jonathan D Solomon Clara Wong



Connectivity Left: New York City 1910 Right: Washington DC 1924




Media As media began to evolve, information began to travel between people faster and faster. People in multiple places began to congregate for unifying causes at a larger scale, especially on the street. After Martin Luther King was assassinated, the announcement of his death in the media caused race riots to break out all over America.


Left: New York City 1945 Right: Detroit Race Riots 1968



Telecommunications As reserach and development of communication technologies progressed, so did the infrastructure that needed to facilite them. Wireless communcations began to increase as well as utiliy connections, and their lengths continued to expand.


Left: Seattle, WA 1962 Right: New Jersey Bell Labs Holmdel Complex Eero Saarinen 1959-1962 9

Overconnectivity = Disconnectivity

Mobility Automobilies became a primary focus of the layout of the city. As cities became more dense and infrastructure developed to handle more traffic, an increasing number of people began to move from the cities to the suburbs. People could now travel a greater amount of distance within a shorter period of time.


Left: Philidelphia Circulation Drawing Louis Kanh 1952 Right: Urban Sprawl 1960s


Overconnectivity = Disconnectivity


Infrastructure The perpetuating growth of the number of automobiles led to serious traffic congestions. Many proposals and megaprojects were made to ease the congestions. Some proposals such as the Sunny Side Railroad Yards Project would utilize under used areas as new connections points and other projects such as the “Big Dig” recquired a tremendous amount of funding to redirect exisiting traffic routes and create underground tunnels to give more way to pedestrians at ground level.

Left: Queens, New York Sunny Side Railroad Yards Project Proposal Gruzen & Partners 1970 Right: Boston Central Artery/Tunnel Project “Big Dig” 1982-2007 13

New York Boston




Overconnectivity = Disconnectivity

Metro System Comparisons Public transportation was another strategy to mitigate automobile traffic. Metro systems allowed more people to flow in and out of city centers efficiently. In some cases, as cities became more dense and concentrated, particular areas on the outskirts of the city become more remote and isolated because they were harder and less feasible to get to.


Washington DC


Overconnectivity = Disconnectivity = Specified/Filtered Connectivity

Anonymity With such dense populations, formalities and social contracts between people become unstable. No longer would one know his or her next door neighbor or maintain relationships with the people that sold them products. Moreover, anonymity between people led to higher crime rates.


Left: Boston, MA 1970s Right: New York City 1970s


Overconnectivity = Disconnectivity = Specified/Filtered Connectivity

Internet With the internet, people can access any desired type of information at any given time. The wires that were once on telephone poles and underground are now inside homes and dominating desk space. The internet is an invisible connection. People have become extremely dependent on energy.


Left: Aspen, CO 1970s


Overconnectivity = Disconnectivity = Specified/Filtered Connectivity

Emerging Connection Types Left: Networking Visual Complexity Right: Jorinde Voight Beethoven’s Sonata-Emotial Mapping 2012



Overconnectivity = Disconnectivity = Specified/Filtered Connectivity



Today’s networking provided for friends and businessess to interact accross the world. The result is globalization. As people become more plugged into their networks, the physical experience becomes increasingly obsolete. Rather than going to coffee shops for physical interaction, people plug into their technological devices. With so many varieties of everything in dense cities, people begin to be more specific about what and who they connect to.

Left: Starbucks 2012 Right: Visual Complexity 2010



Timeline of Connectivity

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