the scariest condos in the world

Just to prove that the real estate bubble is truly mad, Danvers State Hospital is being converted into condos, reports CNN. The infamous Octagon Tower, long a ruin on Roosevelt Island has been rebuilt and turned into an architectural feature for The Octagon Apartments.

Madhouses indeed.

visual complexity

Looking for visualizations of networks? Manuel Lima's Visual Complexity collects a huge number of them in an elegantly presented format.

Remembering Philip Johnson

Somehow, a google search on the interior of the AT&T corporate headquarters (anybody have info they might email my way?) led to this: incredible memorial site

Networked Publics Conference and Media Festival April 28 + 29

Networked Publics, the research group that I've been leading, together with Mimi Ito, will be holding an end of the academic year conference this April as a milestone toward the production of a collaboratively written book on the topic.

Annenberg Center for Communication
University of Southern California
April 28-29, 2006

This two-day event will bring together new media scholars and practitioners to exhibit and discuss the roles of audiences, activists, and producers in maturing networked media ecologies. The event is organized by the Networked Publics fellowship program ( at the University of Southern California’s Annenberg Center for Communication.

The conference includes a media festival and an academic program.
”¬¢ “Do-It-Yourself: Emergent Networked Culture,” is an experimental news and entertainment media festival featuring new kinds of viral, remixed, and amateur media works enabled by current networked ecologies. Categories of curated work include: political remix videos, the digital handmade, anime music videos, machinima, alternative news, network hacks and hacked networks.
”¬¢ The academic program is dedicated to three topics: Politics, Infrastructure and Place. For each of these topics, netpublics fellows will convene a session to interrogate current issues and controversies related to emergent networked ecologies.

The format of the event is designed to promote interaction and dialog across a diverse set of participants. Our goal is to facilitate conversation on topics of shared concern and a mixture of formats that include screenings, debates, and interaction around computer kiosks.

[read more]

Los Angeles River, Concrete Utopia

Geoff Manaugh, normally of BLDGBLOG has a piece at on the Los Angeles River as a concrete utopia. Where other cities are content to put their errant rivers underground, for the most part Los Angeles displays its watercourse on the surface but encases it in concrete, like so much of the city's terrain. As we gaze on the images Geoff has collected and visit the web sites he recommends, we are led to ask, ass he does: is the river something dreamt up (retroactively) by Superstudio?

Death and Taxes

Last night I ran across a graphic, titled Death and Taxes, a thoroughly-researched visual explanation of where our tax dollars go. I think Edward Tufte would be impressed.

blackstar revisited

At the blog he maintains at the Encyclopedia Astronautica, by far the Internet's best site on spacecraft, Mark Wade remarks on the Blackstar controversy, suggesting that if there are problems with the Aviation Week article, it is not as weak as its critics suggest. What really bothers Wade is what bothers me. That this story””?which certainly is far more interesting than, say the Monica Lewinksy scandal””?has received virtually no attention in traditional press venues. That, unfortunately, says quite a bit about culture today and the lack of interest in space and aviation in the public at large.

how to build a glass staircase rarely puts works of architecture on the front page, but if Steve Jobs is listed as lead designer, that's another story. has a large collection of information on the Apple Stores, good reading for anyone interested in retail design. The highlight, however, and what brought me to the site is their analysis of the glass staircases at the flagship stores.
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The Red Book of the Peoples of the Russian Empire

Originally published in Estonia during the last years of the Soviet Union, the Red Book of the Peoples of the Russian Empire chronicles the many small cultures in the Soviet Union””?many now in Russia””?under threat of extinction. It makes fascinating reading.

Annenberg Principles on Network Neutrality

The Annenberg Center for Communication, where I am a resident fellow this year recently brought together a group of senior communication experts from industry, academia, and consumer groups to discuss how to begin to bridge differences over the issue of network neutrality. Together, this group developed the Annenberg Principles for Network Neutrality, a set of key points to serve as a base for discussions on the topic in the future.

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