The Octopus Card

Posted by & filed under Cities, Uncategorized.

I am in Hong Kong this week for Blockstack‘s Decentralizing the World Tour (more on that in a forthcoming post).   I arrived yesterday and have been exploring the city a bit. The first observation is how awful the air quality is.  Holy cow.  This report from Plume Labs (snapshot from the time when I took this… Read more »

Internet meets world: rules go boom

Posted by & filed under Cities, Internet, Meta.

Since 2006, I’ve been writing here about cities, the internet, and the ongoing collision between the two. Along the way, I’ve also loved using Tumblr to clip quotes off the web, building on the idea of “the slow hunch” (the title of this blog) and the “open commonplace book” as a tool for tracking the… Read more »

Open, interoperable cities

Posted by & filed under Cities.

The first CityCamp, in January 2010 was a memorable event for a bunch of reasons.  It simultaneously marked the birth of several civic technology initiatives — the CityCamp unconference series itself, which has grown like gangbusters since then, Code for America, which has since just finished its first year and is growing like mad, and of course Civic… Read more »

Missed Connections

Posted by & filed under Cities.

In her bathroom, a friend of mine has some really beautiful illustrations of posts from the Craigslist Missed Connections section.  If you’ve never looked at missed connections, you should — there are some really wonderful notes in there (also some sketchy ones).  Here’s a beautiful one from today: 7 train glances on monday – w4m… Read more »

Talking transit tech @ the MTAdev conf

Posted by & filed under Cities, transit.

Next Wednesday, I’ll be on a panel at the MTA Developers Unconference.  I’m very much looking forward to the event, because among other things, one of my fellow panelists will be the new MTA Chief, Jay Walder.  Here, I’ll give an overview of what I’m hoping to discuss on the panel; any feedback would  be… Read more »

Interview on the Engadget Show is live

Posted by & filed under Cities, Open Source, transit.

A few months ago, I did a short interview for the Engadget Show on the state of real-time bus information here in NYC.  The interview was for a video segment which led into a live interview with the reporter I worked with, Rick Karr.  The whole episode is now available online.  Before our section is… Read more »

Transit: uniter or divider?

Posted by & filed under Cities, transit.

Today’s post on Infrastructurist about the D-Train Murder had a line that caught my eye: Cramming the population of a city like New York into a maze of underground cars creates a forced melting pot that’s a perfect breeding ground for class and race divisions. There’s no question that the NYC subway is a forced… Read more »

The secret life of the subway

Posted by & filed under Cities.

In doing some photo hunting for a side project, I came across this gem of a photo on Flickr. Riding the subway all over the city, I often think about the fact that most great subway moments (and many great city moments, for that matter) go unrecorded. Perhaps this is part of the beauty of… Read more »

Eyes on the Street: RUOK?

Posted by & filed under Cities.

I came across this enigmatic construction sign yesterday on the side of the West Side Highway in Manhattan. I did a double-take, trying to determine if, perhaps, I was the only one who could see this message. What do you see? I honestly can’t think of a reasonable explanation…

Coming soon… Pedestrian Power

Posted by & filed under Cities.

I’ve heard this story in various forms over the past few years, but according to the London Times, pedestrian power is ready to be harnessed: Underfloor generators, powered by “heel strike” and designed by British engineers, may soon be installed in supermarkets and railway stations. The technology could use the footsteps of pedestrians to power… Read more »

Big Ideas for a Small Planet: Transport

Posted by & filed under Cities.

The opening keynote speaker at the Towards Carfree Cities conference is Mia Birk, from a bike/ped planning firm here in Portland called Alta Design. Check out the short episode of “Big Ideas for a Small Planet,” above, featuring Mia talking about the pedestrian & bicycle planning movement in Portland — she’s very eloquent and the… Read more »

Taking the train to work

Posted by & filed under Cities.

Last Tuesday, Aaron Naparstek and I took in the Yankee game and watched the impressive Cliff Lee throw a 7-inning shut out and drop his ERA to 0.81, in what some analysts were calling “the pitching matchup of the season” (5-0 Lee vs. 6-0 Wang). It turns out, had we been a little earlier, we… Read more »