News Public Realm

The City and Emerging Technologies

The Real Time City by Andrea Vaccari

The way we describe and understand cities is being radically transformed, alongside the tools we use to design them and impact on their physical structure. While architecture has shaped the built environment to satisfy urban dwellers aesthetically and to accommodate their functional needs such as face-to-face interactions and travel, pervasive systems shape electronically mediated interactions in urban space, including use of both fixed and mobile displays and wireless communication (see CityWare).

A major issue is space and its relationship with behavior: how do we design the ambient created by fusing electronically created interaction space with architecturally created physical space? Another major issue is infrastructure: how do we provide interaction and interoperability that scale up to city-level pervasive systems, while ensuring that they function appropriately and merge aesthetically with urban spaces, materials, forms and uses?

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