1. ➞ "Making a Game Out of Town Hall Meetings"
  2. ➞ "Follow the Drips of Paint"

    The annoying/interesting thing about NYC is its pursuit of the next big neighborhood.

  3. ➞ ArtHERE: A Matchmaking Service For Urban Spaces And Art

    via @popularstranger.

  4. ➞ "In Star Wars, cities are evil"

    George Lucas hates cities. At least that’s what I gather from decades of watching and rewatching the original Star Wars movies.

    (Source: io9.com)

  5. ➞ "Is street play coming back into fashion?"

    For many parents, the goal is simple: to get their children away from screens and out of doors, where they can play freely with their friends. In many urban neighbourhoods – especially where green space is in short supply - streets are the closest and most convenient communal space for play. Parents do let their children out, as long as they feel reassured that the danger from traffic is managed.

  6. ➞ "The truth about creativity"

    The most creative, fulfilling, and productive sessions of interaction with other human beings have been graduate classes. And not all of them. Just some classes. And not all the sessions in that class either - but every once in a while there is something that happens that is damn near magical. I’ve been in classes about, say, Civil War society, with a professor at IU that is an expert in the field. And we, about 10 phd level students, collectively came up with a new theory of interpretation that made him - us - totally rethink a particular topic. Afterward he said that though rare, that was why he taught graduate classes: it makes him a better scholar.   

    I think it has something to do with what Lehrer says:

    As you note, researchers have shown that group collaborations benefit from debate and dissent; it is the human friction that makes the sparks. Alas, the presence of criticism means that a few people are going to get their feelings hurt. So I think one reason we’ve clung to brainstorming for decades is that it increases employee morale, even if that comes at the cost of creativity. That’s an unfortunate truth, of course, but that doesn’t make it less true. There’s a reason why Steve Jobs always insisted that new ideas required “brutal honesty.”

    I think that’s the key. People argue points, but when that spark happens they are willing to modify them based on new information or better logic. It doesn’t happen often, and somehow it happens in spite of the fact that there’s a ton of ego in the room. But it works.

    After reading this article, I wonder if something similar happens during improv, or perhaps a better example would be the writing room for a TV show. Can you imagine how many stupid ideas get shot down at a pitch session for The Daily Show? There’s no time to pretend as if everyone’s idea is equal and valid - which is kind of what happens in the design processes I’ve been involved with in the last three weeks.

    So the question becomes: how does one facilitate a process in which the stupid ideas are called out and no one’s feelings are hurt?

  7. ➞ "The New Suburban Poverty"

    Chances are, however, that suburbs facing the highest burdens of the new poverty will be least able to meet them because of the economic recession and the spatial retreat of the better off. Just as many white Americans fled the cities for the suburbs in the 1960s, leaving the cities behind with declining tax revenues and fewer job opportunities, there is new cycle of exodus of the well-to-do from inner-ring metropolitan suburbs. As the better-off retreat, the provision of amenities and essentials from parks to schools to garbage pickup, heavily funded by property taxes, are bound to flounder for those left-behind.

  8. ➞ "Outside Influences: Of Crime And The City"

    There have always been cities like this in our world, the kind that inspire men like Samuel Johnson to proclaim: “…when a man is tired of London, he is tired of life; for there is in London all that life can afford.” I’d modify that to say that “when a man’s bank account becomes tired, London quickly tires of him; for there is in London far more than some lives can afford.” That’s one reason why crime is an inevitability in these warrens, whether real or fictional, because the availability of so much that is conducive to living a good life (any and every sort of good) causes people to feel the lack of what they do not have more sharply than ever.

    Crime and the video game city at Rock Paper Shotgun.

  9. (Source: lacma.wordpress.com)

  10. ➞ "The Youngest Metro in the World"

    Beautiful photo narrative of the newly finished Almaty Metro in Kazakhstan.