“Whereto machines”

Thursday, 13 December 2007

Peter Glaser, the famous author who was “born as a pencil in Graz, Austria”, wrote down some observations on “whereto machines” (meaning sat navs) in his column at Focus Online (German):

“Anderntags freundete ich mich mit den Optionen des Navis an. Man konnte ihm nicht nur sagen, was es tun, sondern auch, was es bleiben lassen sollte. Meide die Highways, befahl ich. Wir fuhren hintenrum durch Amerika. Wir sahen keine Sehenswürdigkeiten, sondern das Land, wie es ist. Ohne den elektronischen Lotsen hätte ich nur knittrige Karten und Tankstellen gesehen. Durch die Hochhausschluchten der großen Innenstädte segelten wir auf Sicht. Ehe wir morgens losfuhren, suchte ich mir dazu zwei, drei markante Häuser, Brücken, Hügel aus dem Baedecker. Medienmix nennt man das.”


“Ourstories” – children’s location-based experiences

Tuesday, 11 December 2007


Ourstories.org by Unicef, one laptop per child (OLPC) and Google is an oral history project, in which location is not only a set of longitude and latitude, but a social place in our world. The project is…

“a joint initiative to preserve and share the histories and identities of cultures around the world by making personal stories available online in many languages. Using laptops, mobile phones and other recording devices, children will record, in their native languages, the stories of elders, family members and friends. These stories will be shared globally through the Our Stories website, where they can be found on a Google Map.

By making these stories accessible around the world, the Our Stories project hopes to contribute to a better understanding of our shared humanity across countries and cultures, across religious traditions, across languages, and across generations.”


Two examples on malaria, street kids and – music…

Press Release via Directions magazine.

mscape ‘always something somewhere else’

Friday, 7 December 2007

The mscapeFest07 was good. Here comes another video on mscaper.

A video from 29fragiledays/YouTube: “Some user feedback on ‘always something somewhere else‘, a generative locative media experience built using the new Hewlett Packard mScape software.”

Author Duncan Speakman on ‘always something somewhere else‘:

“In the work the listener is asked to locate various substances that form the contemporary urban environment (glass, stone, concrete etc.). As they mark the location of each one they begin to hear interwoven stories connecting them to remote locations around the world, soundtracked with a generative music score. The narratives are progressed and concluded as the listener returns to the locations they chose. The piece is reflective and sometimes melancholy, it touches on issues of climate change and global awareness, but ultimately encourages the listener to treasure the moments around them…”

Telegraph: Tune into the audio guide!

Saturday, 24 November 2007

Nick Trend’s homage to the world of audio guides is an inspiring look at some examples of current audio experiences especially at museums and galleries, and he states why he likes audio guides:

“If you want more detailed explanations, you have to rely on human guides (very variable), general travel guides (very sketchy on most cultural sites) or the museum’s or site’s own guidebook (often awkward to read while you tour).

The best solution is to hire an audio guide, and it always surprises me how few visitors use them.”


Telegraph: iPhone as travel guidebook

Tuesday, 20 November 2007

Suzy Bennett reports on her experience with the iPhone as a travel assistant for a trip to Madrid:

Before I left for Madrid, I downloaded several guides on to my phone: six podcasts, an audio walking tour, a guide to Madrileño restaurants and bars and a Spanish phrasebook, produced by Rough Guides.

I also “bookmarked” – saved – the Lonely Planet and Rough Guide website addresses, plus a selection of travel blogs for reference.”

There are several observations on the activities of the traditional guidebook publishers like Lonely Planet to cope with the “digital challenge” (e.g. lonelyplanet.tv “a kind of You Tube for travel videos”).