I’m blind, so my nose tells me what neighborhood I’m in.
My dog and I – we walk. We’ll walk from 125th down to Houston. The smell of Harlem is definitely different now. It’s more open. There’s a new class of people. The whole thing feels like someplace else. — The Guardian
To navigate a vast city, people often develop a set of idiosyncratic markers: personal landmarks, favorite coffee joints, or in Craig Taylor's case, the smell of a particular section of town. Should designers start thinking in terms of creating signature scents to help identify their work for a...
Waze sometimes sends drivers through little-used side streets such as Cody Road [in Sherman Oaks, Calif]...Some people try to beat Waze at its own game by sending misinformation about traffic jams and accidents so it will steer commuters elsewhere. Others log in and leave their devices in their cars, hoping Waze will interpret that as a traffic standstill and suggest alternate routes. — The Wall Street Journal
More about Waze on Archinect:Throwback Throughway: when GPS fails, these gorgeous "mental maps" help you navigateWaze takes on the ride-sharing market with new carpooling appArnold Schwarzenegger voices Waze appWaze and its new uneasy bedfellows
A set of maps from designer Archie Archambault might help us rebuild the mental maps of cities that we're starting to lose. Instead of a literal grid of streets, he maps out neighborhoods and the basic parts of a city the way someone who lives there might think of it, or at least the way they probably did before Google Maps existed. — Fast Company
How did people live—or at least find their way to all of the events, parties, and work-related meetings—before they had smartphones and GPS? You could ask a friend, just as Archie Archambault did when he first visited Portland and didn't know his way around. Since then, he has started drawing...
The sensory limitations of these vehicles must be accounted for, Nourbakhsh explained, especially in an urban world filled with complex architectural forms, reflective surfaces, unpredictable weather and temporary construction sites. This means that cities may have to be redesigned, or may simply mutate over time, to accommodate a car’s peculiar way of experiencing the built environment... — Geoff Manaugh on The New York Times
"...The flip side of this example is that, in these brief moments of misinterpretation, a different version of the urban world exists...If we can learn from human misperception, perhaps we can also learn something from the delusions and hallucinations of sensing machines. But what?"As self-driving...
Many people view GPS and similar emerging interior-wayfnding technologies as a way to 'solve the blind wayfnding challenge.'...Architects still need to be better multisensory placemakers to design and create effective environments for the blind and visually impaired. — Dwell
Chris Downey, whose story as a blind practicing architect was recently documented in the AIA's "Look Up" campaign this past May, dishes in on his own experiences with embossing printers, wayfinding devices, and graphic input tools, and other emerging technologies that have the potential to vastly...
Starting Monday, drivers around the world could soon be directed by a familiar Austrian-accented voice telling them: "I'm a Terminator Cyberdyne Systems Model 101, and you're coming with me."
It's Arnold Schwarzenegger, the actor and former California governor, who is lending his persona as the famed Terminator from the movie franchise to the community-based traffic and navigation app Waze. — USA Today
Place cells, which fire when the brain recognizes a corresponding geographical landmark (like your house, or the Space Needle) [offer] a two-dimensional map of familiar environments [...]
Grid cells ... are not tied to particular places — but are adjusted as needed to mark off the space around us [...]
Now, researchers from University College London have shown how grid cells help us combine mental maps, joining rooms into a house, blocks into a neighborhood and neighborhoods into a city. — nextcity.org
The three scientists’ discoveries “have solved a problem that has occupied philosophers and scientists for centuries — how does the brain create a map of the space surrounding us and how can we navigate our way through a complex environment?” said the Karolinska Institute in Sweden, which chooses the laureates.
The positioning system they discovered helps us know where we are, find our way from place to place and store the information for the next time — nytimes.com
Back in 1971, John O'Keefe identified "place cells" in the brain – neurons that were selectively activated in relation to the subject's place in an environment. He concluded these nerves were composing a mental map of the space, and the collection of multiple place cells constituted a spatial...
In a city with no addresses, it’s difficult for local authorities to tax property. And without tax revenues, it’s difficult to upgrade infrastructure and services in the slums [...]
To fix these problems, Ghana is on a national quest to name its city streets. [...]
Giving names to streets is only a means to an end. The real problem cities are trying to solve is service delivery. When properties have actual addresses and those addresses reside in databases, all kinds of things become possible. — Citiscope
Macy’s has added a new feature to its iPhone app that provides indoor turn-by-turn directions for its massive flagship location in New York City’s Herald Square, courtesy of Meridian, the software startup behind an indoor GPS platform. — mashable.com
Is indoor GPS navigation the new wayfinding? Since launching last year, Meridian has worked with a handful of prominent institutions to build indoor mapping systems from the ground up, including the American Museum of Natural History in New York and the Venetian hotel and casino in Las Vegas. The...
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