Category: Blog

Do 1002 Systems/Layers WalkShop Barcelona FTW!

Damn! this is going to be like getting those X-Ray Spex (no – not talking about the seminal punk band, although they rock too) from old comic books. Adam Greenfield & Nurri Kim are going to be exposing the city, explaining all of those mysterious boxes clamped on to "street furniture", where they are from, what they mean and where they are going. What are those cameras, sensors, and other connected, networked objects doing and why? How are they going to change the city and you & me,  politics and relationships and behaviour and culture. What is going to happen to society and space, public & private?

If you have any interest in cities, technology & society, urban design, the future of public space and relationships you simply DON'T want to miss this – Adam & Nurri have conceived a new format – the Walkshop in which we're going to get down & dirty and see this stuff in situ, not on a bunch of slides, and distinctly run the risk of pissing off security guards.

Check out the video above, shot during the #walkshop in Wellington, and read this blog post to see how CJ Wells rediscovered his barrio:

"Over the course of an hour, Adam pointed out curiosities previously unnoticed. This was my ‘hood. Yet, I had not seen rooftops bristling with aerials, streets covered by security cameras, and buildings shielding black boxes. It was mind blowing…"

The #walkshop is going to be unique event in which a great thinker & communicator riffs on the fabric of the city itself – Bring it on!

Full details here

Check out this talk from Adam at Urban Labs last year to see the context of the #walkshop

 

Kfé Innovación – Innovation Café

KFE-logo-v1

Ana's off to Seville today to take part in the first Kfé Innovación .

The idea of the café is to get some "experts" to sit down with a maximum of 10 interested people from business, education and the public sector and have a real particatory discussion about what innovation means to them and how they can use creative ideas in future projects. The event is organised by Kpacita a  Seville and Catalonia based company who want to rethink "conventional" wisdom both for themselves & their clients.

Over coffee Ana will be facilitating the 3 hour session today on the concept of innovation and how the internet can be the perfect stage for social & business development (Kfé Innovación blog post – in Spanish). On June 9th our mate Enric Senabre will introduce a discussion on social networks and knowledge networks, and on June 23rd, I'll be getting plenty of tapas provoking everyone about online contacts, social networks and the crossover IRL (In Real Life).

It'll be interesting to see how the format works and hopefully the typical event of experts and public will be replaced by collaborative thinking and a lot of crowdsourced, practical conclusions. Hats off to Kpacita for taking the risk and hopefully the Seville experts can guarantee me some excellent tapas…

The hashtag for the series of Innovation Cafés is #kfesev

pdf pack (in Spanish)


#talkingabout: P2P Foundation

P2P Foundation, with Michel Bauwens from redall on Vimeo.

Michel Bauwens, founder of the P2P Foundation was in Barcelona again last week to speak at the Universidad Nomada in the Sala Conservas and I went along with Ricard Espelt & Gemma Urgell to film this interview with him for their #talkingabout series. #talkingabout is a paltform which aims to create participation around things, people & ideas worth, well, talking about through a system of videos, votes, comments etc which is open to anyone. I previously wrote about #talkingabout here and will be recording an interview with Ricard & Gemma soon.

Here’s a video which presents #talkingabout :

Talkingabout from redall on Vimeo.

I also recorded an interview with Michel for the Citilab blog:

Here’s Michel’s presentation from the Universidad Nomada:

Talkingabout

Talkingabout is an interestering series of video interviews carried out by Ricard Espelt & Gemma Urgell (two of the most active & creative people around in Catalonia and Spain) in the language of the interviewee. They post the videos on their respective blogs and then "talk about" them, each from their own viewpoint. Right now they are working on building a platform around their idea so that anybody can post their own videos, talk about their own or others vids, or leave comments – the idea is to make the interviews a starting point for conversations so that everybody can Talkabout the ideas in the interviews. Below are some examples of their recent English language videos – you can find all the videos here Talkingabout: Joe Rospars from redall on Vimeo. Talkingabout: mySociety from redall on Vimeo.

The UrbanLabs Club?

UL2

It’s been a crazy, inspiring, tiring month or so with the Citilab presentation at the CCCB, my visit to Birmingham and then UrbanLabs – and a lot of time reflecting, analysing and plotting.

Something’s been bugging me for months now & I’m beginning to understand what it is – ever since my first visit to Birmingham I’ve been trying to put my finger on the “difference”, on what is happening there, what is (or isn’t) happening here, on the role of Citilab and on the part of Cataspanglish in all this.

It all seems to have gelled in the last 48 hours – the “difference” or “solution” is twofold, sharing & community.

The Birmingham scene is the way it is now after around two years of people getting together, doing things and having as much a relationship offline as on. Dave Harte showed in his UrbanLabs presentation how this had happened and backed up my own experience when speaking with peeps from Brum. Twitter seems to be the fabric that holds their community together and the other important point is the willingness in Birmingham of the people to come together and use their skills & knowledge to to participate in, criticise and construct a wider community (not just the geeks) throughout the city and now further afield.

Oh yes, and with a sense of humour.

Citilab Presentation October 2009 - Digital Cities-1

So everything seems so deadly serious here (usually – thank you Platoniq for the construction of the Twittometer for the Grande Finale of UrbanLabs!) and often the concept of sharing seems like something from another planet. There can’t be community when people won’t share and there are clearly many in Spain (& elsewhere of course) who are using social media as just the latest tool on the block. While I was in Birmingham I spoke about social media in Spain to a group of students and lecturers from the Birmingham City University, talking about the difference between the way social media is usually used in Spain and a few inspiring projects such as Copons 2.0 (created by Ricard Espelt). A Spanish student said that he doubted anything would change as in his opinion his fellow countrymen & women are too entrenched in the status quo.

Ironically while I’ve been writing this, Ana has already posted a call to arms – and that’s what I want this to be. If we are to form communities amongst those of us who are doing or want to do, we cannot have just have these great, inspiring events once a year. So what I want to suggest is taking the spirit and PRACTICE of UrbanLabs and turn it into something more frequent. Let’s have some sort of follow up on a regular basis, a Saturday morning every couple of months and with participation through video-conference for those who can’t be there in public. Let’s get the UrbanLabs Club going and continue the narrative, the dialogue and the sharing. Let’s make the bloody community!

If you are interested in making an UrbanLabs “Club” please leave a comment.

Pasemos a la acción!

UL1

foto de UrbanLabs'09 pool

 

 

Acabo de volver de UrbanLabs #ul09 donde he aprendido mucho, he escuchado cosas interesantes y algunas no tan interesantes, donde he conocido a gente que tiene unos proyectos muy interesantes y otros no tan interesantes, pero lo más importante es que hemos compartido ideas, conocimiento y risas entre los que estábamos ahí.

 

Mi cerebro no ha parado desde entonces, cuando asisto a jornadas así me cargo de energía “analógica” para transformarla en “digital” y enviarla al depósito del social media para intentar hacer “algo”, por qué de eso se trata ¿no? Está muy bien que nos reunamos y trabajemos juntos durante unos días, pero después qué ¿A dónde va todo ese conocimiento? ¿Emprendemos alguna acción?

 

Quizás es un poco pretencioso pero los que creemos en el social media somos revolucionarios, gente que queremos que las cosas cambien.

5 reasons why we’ll be at UrbanLabs!

urbanlabs Around a year ago I went to Citilab-Cornellà for the first time to participate in UrbanLabs 08 – you can see my first impressions here. A year later I'm working at Citilab and taking part in the preparations for the event, which we will also be going to as cataspanglish. So here are some of the reasons cataspanglish will be attending:

  1. UrbanLabs is a hands-on get down & dirty event which aims to have a real impact and not just be a talking shop although there are some…
  2. Great keynote speakers – Adam Greenfield, Juan Freire, Ben Ceverny & Dave Harte. These are not your boring "circuit" speakers, but people with a real passion for what they're doing & thinking, people who get involved in things such as…
  3. The Ideas Bank which Platoniq are coordinating – real ideas & projects will be presented and the participants of UrbanLabs will be voting on the "best" one to give some financial aid to from the (low) fee from the event because …
  4. the motto for Urbanlabs  (a contribution of one of its founders, Enric Senabre)  is (read this post by Ramon Sangüesa): "Technocitizenship" (geeks with civic conscience and citizens with digital abilities) and "Socioinnovation"  (let technocitizens invent their collective future) – so come &
  5. let's invent our collective future!

See you there…