"Situated software isn’t a technological strategy so much as an attitude about closeness of fit…"

“Situated software isn’t a technological strategy so much as an attitude about closeness of fit between software and its group of users, and a refusal to embrace scale, generality or completeness as unqualified virtues. Seen in this light, the obsession with personalization of Web School software is an apology for the obvious truth — most web applications are impersonal by design, as they are built for a generic user. Allowing the user to customize the interface of a Web site might make it more useful, but it doesn’t make it any more personal than the ATM putting your name on the screen while it spits out your money.”

Shirky: Situated Software

"An existing space may outlive its original purpose and the raison d’etre which determines its…"

“An existing space may outlive its original purpose and the raison d’etre which determines its forms, functions, and structures; it may thus in a sense become vacant, and susceptible of being diverted, reappropriated and put to a use quite different from its initial one. A recent and well-known case of this was the reappropriation of the Halles Centrales, Paris’s former wholesale produce market, in 1969-71. For a brief period, the urban centre, designed to facilitate the distribution of food, was transformed into a gathering-place and a scene of permanent festival — in short, into a centre of play rather than of work — for the youth of Paris.”

Henri Lefebvre

"The question of what kind of city we want cannot be divorced from that of what kind of social ties,…"

“The question of what kind of city we want cannot be divorced from that of what kind of social ties, relationship to nature, lifestyles, technologies and aesthetic values we desire. The right to the city is far more than the individual liberty to access urban resources: it is a right to change ourselves by changing the city. It is, moreover, a common rather than an individual right since this transformation inevitably depends upon the exercise of a collective power to reshape the processes of urbanization. The freedom to make and remake our cities and ourselves is, I want to argue, one of the most precious yet most neglected of our human rights.”

New Left Review – David Harvey: The Right to the City

The Antikythera Mechanism in Lego

Filmmaker John Pavlus:

This is a 2000-year-old analog computing device reconstructed out of Lego. It predicts solar and lunar eclipses, accurate to within two hours — all using plastic gears. Andy Carol, its designer, builds mechanical computers out of Lego as a hobby. He made this device basically because Adam Rutherford, an editor and producer at Nature, dared him to. When Adam heard that Andy had actually built the device, he called me and said, “Well, clearly we have to make some sort of film about this thing now.” (small mammal)

"In the Theatre of the Oppressed, though, theatre becomes a tool of empowerment. The boundary…"

“In the Theatre of the Oppressed, though, theatre becomes a tool of empowerment. The boundary between actor and spectator is broken down. Spectators become active participants in the performance; instead of spectators, they become spect-actors. They can intervene in the play – suggest alternative acts for the actors to perform, or they can get onto stage themselves and act. Actors, on the other hand, become jokers – facilitators, encouraging spectators to become spect-actors, and acting out roles that spect-actors ask them to (Boal, 1974/1979).”

The Theatre of the Oppressed: A Biography of Augusto Boal

"Milord runs his Mad Avenue Gallery, in which he displays wares. He is protected by a handful of rude…"

“Milord runs his Mad Avenue Gallery, in which he displays wares. He is protected by a handful of rude footmen who seem to feel that this is the way Life will always be. At his beck and call is Sir Fretful Callous, a moderately well-informed high priest, who apparently despises the Flame he is supposed to tend and therefore prefers anything which titillates him. However, Milord needs his services, since he, poor thing, hasn’t the time or the energy to contribute more than his name and perhaps his dollars; getting information and finding out what’s going on are simply toooooo exhausting. So, well protected and advised, he goes blissfully through the streets in proper Louis XIV style.”

U B U W E B :: Dick Higgins on Intermedia