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Emerging Virtual Reality Platforms

In A Sense of Place, 12. SOP 2.0 by Eva

Virtual reality is being anticipated as the next big thing in digital experience. Currently, they are popularly associated with the Google cardboard headset and the Oculus Rift system. With these systems people can play games or sit into immersive experiences, such as roller coaster rides or pornographic scenes. The psychiatry field is also experimenting with virtual reality therapy techniques for …

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Fabricate Nature on Urban Roofs.

In A Sense of Place, 10. Placemaking by Eva

For one summer I worked on a green roof on Randall’s Island, which is best known as the home of the FDNY training headquarters and seasonal location of the Governor’s Ball music festival. The green roof was the project of the Parks Department Sustainability division, and sat on top of their “5boro” office building as part of an ongoing project. …

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Sidewalk Blight

In A Sense of Place, 9. Placelessness by Eva

“Impermanence and instability of places” is one of the manifestations of placelessness which Edward Relph talks about. New York is constantly undergoing changes, as we have talked about in class. Establishments close down or change owners, historic buildings are updated and renovated, little old buildings are torn down in order to construct a new luxury condominium. One of the ways …

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In A Sense of Place, 8. The Vernacular Landscape by Eva

In a district, the supermarket is a hub. It is an ordinary, accessible place for everyone. It’s part of the everyday routine, often a stop on the way home. It’s basically a large pantry with everything in it — in fact the scale at which it exists is particularly notable. When we think about the size of supermarkets, we think …

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The Suburbs in American Consciousness

In A Sense of Place, 7. Sprawl and New Urbanism by Eva

In “Sitcom Suburbs” Dolores Hayden says of class culture in the suburbs: “Families moved into a culture of consumption and became dependent on cars. Rituals such as backyard barbeques and parents’ parties in tot-lots may have seemed novel but were not defining.” Hayden goes on to remark on the postwar suburbs, that they were idyllic mainly in the sense of …

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Mayan in L. A.

In A Sense of Place, 6. Shock of the New by Eva

In J.B. Jackson’s “Living Outside with Mrs. Panther“, the couple lives in a glass house designed by Mies Van der Rohe. One notable function of this glass house is that its glass wall provides a total view to the outdoors. In that way, this house is integrated with nature, which Jackson calls the house’s ability to provide “The immediate experience …

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Jane Jacobs’ Standards

In A Sense of Place, 5. Visions of Utopia by Eva

Jane Jacobs criticized certain visions of urban planning, particularly condemning projects of grand conception and scale. She pointed out several locations in New York City which she thought were failures in her own measurement, such as Park Avenue, Lincoln Square, and Lower Manhattan around Wall Street. Jacobs pointed out that these locations, along with  other central institutions and building complexes, …

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In A Sense of Place, 4. The Social Life of Places by Eva

Whyte would agree that this is a good public space. There’s almost a ziggurat’s worth of steps to sit on, and there’s food, so much food! Hot dogs! and pretzels! and Snapple! and halal! The sheer number of people here proves that it’s a good public space, and all the pictures they’re taking refer to the beauty and momentousness. The …

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Directions from the Within

In A Sense of Place, 3. City Form and Orientation by Eva

Sometimes when a tourist asks me for directions it takes me a while to give them instructions that makes sense. Then when I’ve sent them off, I begin to remember landmarks I should have cited — I realize I should have been more detailed or more thorough but it’s too late. Now that I’m thinking more about maps, and thinking …

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The Changing Stillness

In A Sense of Place, 1. The Experience of Place by Eva

Entering Central Park from 59th street: on a map, that would be the lower right corner of the park. We walked for about fifteen to twenty minutes, and climb up a low hillside overlooking a wide road. Though we have not traversed in very deeply, probably just the equivalent of a few city blocks, it feels as if we are already in …