Monday, November 24, 2008

Tableaux Vivants: Street with a View

I am enamored of Robin Hewlett and Ben Kinsley's Street with a View, filmed in May 2008 along Sampsonia Way in Pittsburgh's Northside.  Its reinterpretation with Google Street View just appeared this month.  

For a fuller description of the project, click here.

Urban Tapestries is a similar project that was conceived and developed by Proboscis with collaborators the London School of Economics, Birbeck College, Orange, HP Research Labs, France Telecom R& D United Kingdom, and the British Ordnance Survey.   The platform allowed people to build relationships between places and associated narratives, pictures, recordings, and videos.  The projects are documented in a variety of media, connected by spatial memories.   

The University of Massachusetts in Lowell recently applied for a new patent that will help individuals create two- and three-dimensional maps of information searches.  Digital results may be superimposed in an interactive visual interface designed to harness human spatial memory. 

A former colleague once told me the story of a highly regarded professor, who, knowing he was going blind, began to construct a building in his mind, an expansive multi-storied structure with many rooms.  In certain rooms, he stored certain types of knowledge. The pathways he took from one space to another were traceable, years of accumulated knowledge that once had occupied thousands of individual notecards were now retrievable by accessing these mental spaces.  To read more about historic "Memory Palaces" click here.

Read more in the TSA Library:  

Donlyn Lyndon and Charles Moore.  Chambers for a Memory Palace.  Cambridge, MA:  MIT Press, 1994.  NA 737.L96 A3 1994

Photograph:  tENTATIVELY a cONVENIENCE is a Mad Scientist / d-composer / Sound Thinker / Thought Collector. Whenever he has the energy he devotes himself to "undermining 'reality' maintenance traps"— which naturally made him an ideal contributor for Street With A View! Also a maker of costumes, tENT made an appearance in his Bird Brain persona.  Street with a View URL:  Viewed 24.11.2008.

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