Physical Space Tweets: Pst! microCONTROL

Pst! is the surreptitious beckoning of attention and the acronym for Physical Space Tweets. It is a small Ardunio storyteller installed in public space giving an audience a glimpse into a geo-tagged community’s topic feed.

For the Leeds Pavillion at Mediamatic’s Amsterdam Biennale 2009 Pst! chronicled life in Leeds through it’s twitter feed.

Pst! microCONTROL from Megan Leigh Smith on Vimeo.

The piece locates a public social narrative by pulling an information feed from Twitter User profiles geographically aligned to Leeds with Twitter’s geocode API and then prints this information onto a mini LCD screen. By removing the peripheral of the computer a Pst! device can be placed in a non-space providing a window directly into a geo-located public space.

See http://megansmith.ca/blog/?tag=arduino for more info.

Author Bio

Andy is Professor of Digital Urban Systems at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis at University College London.

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A Couple of Days Off

A quick post just to say that at this quiet time of year we are taking a couple of days away from the office and more than likely the blog as well due to lack of internet access.

That said, we have some exciting new projects starting September 1st and various software reviews lined up, the blog will be back end of the week/start of the next week.

Till then, we have over 1250 posts so feel free to have a rummage around…

Author Bio

Andy is Professor of Digital Urban Systems at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis at University College London.

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The Flood: London Digital Effects


Climate change and its effects on cities is an increasingly hot topic, as such its not surprising that it is a topic being tapped into by movie makers. While climate change may not be a good thing we do like the movies about cities and the digital effects that come with them. The Flood, a movie directed by Tony Mitchell and based on the novel by Richard Doyle, develops a scenario whereby London is submerged under 20ft of flood-water.

The trailer below provides a glimpse of London that any digital effects creator would be proud of:

In order to reassure the public in light of the film The Environment Agency, perhaps surprisingly, issued a statement. The agency reassure that the possibility of London’s defence structures succumbing to a major flood is currently estimated at having a 1:2000 or 0.05 per cent chance of occurring.

The last major flood was a 1:300 event in 1953 and it was this event that led to the construction of the Barrier. Tony Mitchell however states that the film was ‘scientifically accurate’.

The movie was released in August and is now available on DVD, while the reviews were mixed its a good watch even if only for the city effects….

Author Bio

Andy is Professor of Digital Urban Systems at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis at University College London.

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Climate change and its effects on cities is an increasingly hot topic, as such its not surprising that it is a topic being tapped into by movie makers. While climate change may not be a good thing we do like the movies about cities and the digital effects that come with them. The Flood, a movie directed by Tony Mitchell and based on the novel by Richard Doyle, develops a scenario whereby London is submerged under 20ft of flood-water.

The trailer below provides a glimpse of London that any digital effects creator would be proud of:

In order to reassure the public in light of the film The Environment Agency, perhaps surprisingly, issued a statement. The agency reassure that the possibility of London’s defence structures succumbing to a major flood is currently estimated at having a 1:2000 or 0.05 per cent chance of occurring.

The last major flood was a 1:300 event in 1953 and it was this event that led to the construction of the Barrier. Tony Mitchell however states that the film was ‘scientifically accurate’.

The movie was released in August and is now available on DVD, while the reviews were mixed its a good watch even if only for the city effects….

Author Bio

Andy is Professor of Digital Urban Systems at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis at University College London.

1 Comment

  1. PlaceMatters Weekly Blog Roundup: September 27, 2010 - January 20, 2014

    […] Digital Urban posted a new timelapse showing the locations of bicycle in London’s bike share program.  The pattern of bikes moving from the edges to the city center during the morning commute and back again in the evening seems like a pretty useful data visualization tool. […]

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Oliver O’Brien, a Research Associate here at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis has updated his excellent London Cycle Hire map to include a historic view of the last 48 hours.


As Ollie states over on his Suprageography blog, the distinctive weekday commuting patterns are easy to spot, with the morning rush into the centre, followed by the evening rush back out to the edges and the station terminals. Distribution vehicles movements can be inferred, particularly during the wee small hours when there is little other activity.

You can run the animation direct via the Cycle Hire Dock Visualisation Map.

Also check out A Day in the Life of the London cycle Hire Scheme by James Cheshire.

Author Bio

Andy is Professor of Digital Urban Systems at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis at University College London.

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