After pondering about Peak Oil, and it’s potential effect, I’ve come to the conclusion that it may be a benefit to society. Fossil fuels have allowed mankind to build a fast moving society that although amazing, is ultimately unsustainable. With the end of fossil fuels perhaps we will transition to a simpler society that combines the best of both modern and time-tested technologies. I envision a future where suburbs end their role as “bedroom communities” and become actual communities where people utilize their low density for growing food. We do not need to tear down the suburbs to start over. Front lawns, backyards, and empty parking lots are places where urban farming can take place. The wide streets will be dominated by bicycles and buses. Intersections will be the site of new local businesses that serve their communities. Trains will return as a primary mode of regional transportation. These future suburbs could potentially foster new community interaction where neighbors will actually know their neighbors. Perhaps this form of localized community development will not be suitable for all parts of the United States. Suburbs built in the arid deserts are screwed. I’m focusing my thoughts on Orange County.
The city is a place where the self is confronted most brutally with the other, and where it is also most detached from it. The city is history, and it is an Orwellian “double think” where history is abolished quickly and without notation. In the city, “time challenges time, time clashes with time: habits and values carry over beyond the living group, streaking with different strata of time the character of any single generation. Layer upon layer, past times preserve themselves in the city until life itself is finally threatened with suffocation.
—Lewis Mumford, The Culture of Cities (1938)
With the enormous improvement in the techniques of mathematical manipulations of electronic computers applied to the problem of past trends, we are in danger of surrendering to a mathematically extrapolated future which at best can be nothing more of an extension of what existed before. Thus we are in danger of losing one of the most important concepts of mankind, that the future is what we make it.
—Edmund Bacon (via fuckyeahurbandesign)
Our cities need public spaces that target more than the affluent shopper. The attraction, instead of being a retail outlet or cafe, should be the experience. The experience of being part of the city and of chance encounter. All that is required is good design based on an understanding of natural behaviour.
Light Painting WiFi signal strength