The Project

The Flowing city is a collection of projects that I found while searching for information visualisation projects about cities and it is also the name of my thesis 20120620_Master thesis_Margarida Fonseca_6099165.

Some of these projects visualize community generated data, or in other words they use crowdsourced data like for instance Mappiness.

Other projects visualize Real world data – data from monitoring systems (Sensors, RFID, etc) – or visualize data from Open data agencies   or ultimately they visualize proprietary data. Despite the data source, what they all have in common is offering a new perspective of the cartography of the city.

It is very interesting to see city maps revealed by the tracks left by the GPS of vehicle fleets in Lisbon or of taxis in London.

If you know similar projects, projects that should be featuring here and they’re not, please do contact me!

Yuri Engelhardt was my thesis supervisor and below you find my thesis abstract:

The city shaped by technology is a popular topic today mostly due to the hype around smart cities and intelligent cities.
The potentials and promises of having every single object in the city connected to the grid and to each other creates great expectations among IT companies who see themselves as the best partner to provide Municipalities with applications that measure, control and visualize everything that can be traced in the city.
The vision of the city functioning as a computer is not a new one, consequently this thesis research wishes to explore how new media theorists have discoursed about it over the last 17 years.
I analyze what were their expectations, threats and challenges for their visions of the city shaped by technology. For that purpose, I chose to investigate how Batty, Townsend, Mitchell and Sassen described and envisioned cities run and shaped by technology.
Simultaneously, the counterpoint to having the ability of tracking and tracing an endless stream of data-producing-devices and people is to visualize that data flow. As data sources grow in diversity and openness so does the interest of those who create data/information visualization projects.
In this thesis I investigate how data/information visualization theories and projects intersect with the New Media authors theories’ about the city shaped by technology and the possible role such projects may play in maintaining citizens engaged with their cities.