Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Tonight! Design Conversation Baltimore

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There are many reasons why you should swing by the Wind Up Space in Baltimore for tonight's Design Conversation, but perhaps my favorite is the inclusion of Eric Gordon of Boston's Hub2. The organization creates virtual spaces on Second Life and asks us to populate them with potential architecture and design. In their words:

"Hub2 seeks to enable local neighborhoods to participate more meaningfully in the design and development of their own public spaces. Residents engage in a process that employs 3D tools and problem-solving techniques to articulate a common vision reflecting the participants’ values."

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Community planning often falters from what I call the Hairdresser's Syndrome: You tell your stylist what you want, but her interpretation of what you've said is vastly different from what you've envisioned. (It's why they always tell you to bring photos from magazines.) Anyone who has suffered through a bad haircut knows what I mean. Which is why Hub2's approach is a great tool for supporting public conversations. There can be a language barrier between planners, architects, and citizens. Using virtual reality to put a visual voice to the task at hand is a smart idea.

Be sure to pop over to the Wind Up tonight at 6:30 and participate in what promises to be a lively discussion.