Urban computing isn't just fun, games and mapping. There's a dark side to urban technology, with surveillance and subversion in operation and in opposition. It shouldn’t be a surprise: most technologies we use were originally developed in the military before making their way to the civilian side. But mostly, when we talk about urban computing, we tend to focus on its optimistic and entertaining uses.
This panel confronts the relationship of cities to technology. Some things it will discuss: how soldiers literally cut holes in walls to through houses in urban wars; how the government creates geographically dark spaces on the map and launches secret satellites; and the role of DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) in giving rise to urban technologies we use today – to name a few. In balance, we’ll look at the ways that artists, activists, designers, architects and hackers reveal and challenge these shadowy-seeming technologies in their work.
11th–15th March 2011