Ownership Economies Vs Sharing Economies

Cars to Go when you need them. Why overpay for private auto insurance and loan financing? Advanced, 21st Century networking solutions are shredding the North American consumer's aspiration for a car in every garage. Welcome to the new, MESHed world of digitally connected urban travel. On-demand transit has arrived. Greener cities are just one part of an urban transformation the future promises. What's fueling the change...

Will Geodesign Finally Capture the Promise of GIS?

The Geodesign Solutions Platform. Article by Nadia Amoroso In an increasingly complex, MESHed world, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) are an essential part of the urban planning and design process. Unfortunately, due to their complexity, such systems are typically difficult for designers to use. That’s changing. A process called geodesign offers new approaches that unite advanced GIS with city and landscape design in ways never...

Worldwide Urban Database for Climate Modelling Launched

A Libelium weather station for local measurements. This is a city-technology project a lot of digital developers we know will embrace because it has the potential to make a difference to our cities and our climate. The project aims to discover how urban environments affect local, regional, and global climate models. More topically for MESH Cities readers, the project's scientists ask how can...

The MESH Cities Framework: Tools For A Modern City

Wireless, mobile connectivity is changing our cities. City designers and managers face the challenge of making communities digitally connected—not to mention more economically competitive. It is not a simple task. Big companies are happy to sell expensive, smart city solutions. But do they work? Does one size fit all when it comes to the city infrastructure of the future? We understand the dilemma....

M in MESH Stands for Mobile

Nuit Blanche Paris iPhone App (artilt) Black, October night mashups of a city’s art treasures with a million people shouldn’t work, but do. The wildly popular Nuit Blanche movement turns cities into “one giant performance and carnival venue,” that thrill participants as they navigate the normally hidden culture of a city. One reason the events work so well is that,...

One Billion New Smart Phones Will Change Our Cities

(This essay is adapted from the intro story to "Tech in the City" Robert Ouellette wrote for the Winter 2014-2015 of Spacing Magazine) When Steve Jobs built the first mass culture, personal computer in 1976 he envisioned ordinary people as technically empowered as the researchers at IBM or Hewlett Packard. Jobs grew an empire pursuing his vision, living Stuart Brand's...

The Unbearable Lightness of Material (in a MESHed City)

Translucent concrete made by embedding fibre optics in the aggregate mix. (LiTraCon Inc.) In a truly MESHed CIty building materials are lighter, cheaper to make, and capable of producing an infinite array of forms and effects only the most creative designers will be able to fully exploit. What is driving this building technology revolution? Breakthroughs in nanotechnology allow these new materials to improve how our...

What Do We Know About Digital Cities Anyway?

The John Street Toronto virtual city navigation stack circa 1995 Are today's connected citizens confused by the latest digital city offerings? Probably, if only because any social benefits from the technological hype associated with the promotion of smart cities have yet to be demonstrated in a meaningful way. Sure. People can find the closest place to buy a pizza, but have these new digital...

How Big City Transit Can Benefit From Popup Services

Private bus services will get more people out of cars by offering something different than mass transit. For all those city transit workers out their wringing their hands over popup, private transit systems like Bridj, I want to remind you that in the sixties and seventies you folks tried to do something similar. You wanted to get those suburbanites out of...

Salty Ocean Water May Help Green Deserts

Fully illuminated globe image courtesy of NASA. !0% of the earth's land mass is desert unsuitable for agriculture. Gijs Graafland of the Planck Foundation wants the world's nations to beat back creeping deserts by using our oceans' abundant salt water. As every grade school student learns, the earth's surface is covered with about 70 percent water and 30 percent land. Most of that...