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Creativity and the City (International conference on ‘Creativity and the City’, Amsterdam, 2002)

An international conference on ““Creativity and the City” was held in Amsterdam’s former gas works, Westergasfabriek. Westergasfabriek is the latest urban project to transform a former industrial site into a public and cultural amenity, and it wanted to share the lessons it has learned, and bring together comparable projects from around the world. Doors of […]

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Hong Kong Design Task Force (Expert advice to government task force, Hong Kong, 2002)

Doors of Perception’s John Thackara was the expert advisor to the Hong Kong Design Task Force (chair: Victor Lo) which developed a new innovation and research policy for the Hong Kong Polytechnic University. The task force plotted plotting the best way for Hong Kong and China to move up the value chain from a product-based […]

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Amsterdam Medical Centre (AMC) (Participation in think-tank, Amsterdam, 2002)

John Thackara was a member until the end of 2004 of a four person think-tank developing concepts for its Director of a next-generation national childrens hospital.

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Smart matters

The European Commission made ‘ambient intelligence’ a focus of its research programmes for 2001 to 2005. In official documents, the commission sometimes replaces the words ambient intelligence with the acronym AmI – to which I, as a philosophical joke, started adding a question mark – as in, Am I? We shall soon find out: several […]

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Milan Triennale (Exhibition and conference on ‘tomorrow’s services’, Milan, 2002)

Doors of Perception was an advisor to this exibition and conference organised by Ezio Manzini at the Milan Triennale. “In tomorrow’s communities, an obsession with things will replaced by a fascination with events.” Manzini ran workshops in Brazil, China, and India to develop new design ideas for the show (the India one with assistance from […]

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Post-spectacular tourism (Eco-tourism workshop, Narva-Joessu, Estonia, 2002)

“Tourism is fundamentally nothing more than the leisure of going to see what has become banal”. Guy Debord wrote that more than 40 years ago in The Society Of the Spectacle – and today’s mass tourism proves him depressingly right. Is there an alternative? The answer is: maybe. A workshop in Narva-Joesuu, in far eastern […]

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Save the Bonholm Rooster! (Service design workshop, Bonholm island, Denmark, 2002)

The Bonholm Rooster, a superior kind of chicken, is a star product on “Food Island”. So is the legendary white salmon, a ghostly creature that passes quietly by this misplaced Danish island (it sits between Sweden and Poland) only in winter months. Nexo, on Bonholm, is one of dozens of Baltic and European fishing ports […]

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The design challenge of pervasive computing (Doors of Perception 7 on Flow, Amsterdam, 2002)

Trillions of embedded systems are being unleashed into the world. What are the implications of a world filled with all these sensors and actuators? Some of the world’s most insightful designers, thinkers and entrepreneurs addressed these questions at Doors of Perception 7 in Amsterdam in November 2002. The theme was Flow. This new wave of […]

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Why is interaction design important?

I was on the launch team that helped develop teaching and research programmes for Interaction Design Institute Ivrea. One outcome was the following statement, which was written collaboratively with Gillian Crampton Smith’s team in Ivrea. * Interaction design determines how people interact with computers and communications. This is an issue of profound economic and cultural […]

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