Urban Microinformatics: a test case for high resolution urban modeling through aggregating public information sources

The Association for Computer-Aided Architectural Design Research in Asia
Publication Type:
Conference Proceeding
New Frontiers: Proceedings of the 15th International Conference on Computer Aided Architectural Design Research in Asia (CAADRIA 2010), 2010, pp. 327 - 336
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Our contention is that the city is a rich collection of urban micro-ecologies in continuous formation that include information types outside the traditional boundaries of urban design, city planning, and architecture and their native data fields. This paper discusses working with non-standard urban data types of a highly granular nature, and the analytical possibilities and technical issues associated with their aggregation, through a post professional masters level research studio project run in 2008. Opportunities for novel urban analysis arising from this process are discussed in the context of typical urban planning and analysis systems and locative media practices. This research bought to light specific technical and conceptual issues arising from the combination of processes including sources of data, data collection methods, data formatting, aggregating and visualisation. The range and nature of publicly available information and its value in an urban analysis context is also explored, linking collective information sites such as Pachube, to local environmental analysis and sensor webs. These are discussed in this paper, toward determining the possibilities for novel understandings of the city from a user centric, real-time urban perspective.
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