CAAD Theory: A Quantum City

How to think about Cities

051-0728-16L | Elective course | CAAD Theory

What if cities are not connected in space and time? You easily can talk to them. Just by taking a phone for example. But they are species in parallel universes.

Nearly every single point in our planet has become reachable within a few touches. A capability that some centuries ago was an exclusive privilege of emperors, popes and kings. Just imagine, today, any of us has more access to information than emperor Augustus back in roman times or the president of the United States of America 20 years ago. What does this decentralization of information entail in the way we engender and understand the city? What to do when we could potentially do anything?

This course will explore the role of computational power and information technologies in the creation of our imaginaries around the city. We will show you how models and theories, emerging mainly during the 19th and 20th centuries, present leaping correspondences with more ancient conceptions of the city, when observed from an informational perspective. We will establish a refreshing dialogue in times where we seem to be overwhelmed by the wide range of possibilities that technology and the abundance of information are opening up. We are bored by the overused debates around urbanization as a threat, energy crisis, climate change, smart cities: the same problematic is elucidated, no matter which city you are looking at. Instead, we will explore the possibilities that the digital has to offer to us, the world citizens. Such transformations have taken place since the very inception of cities, and this is why we are convinced that each era—including our own—has to reinvent its City within its corresponding cultural galaxies.
Reference: A Quantum City book


number max. 20 / min. 10 motivated students
dates Mondays, 13:00 – 15:00
introduction Monday, 22.02.2016
place Chair for CAAD, HPZ, Floor F unless announced differently
tutors Diana Alvarez-Marin, Miro Roman