This blog has been a bit of a posting backwater, partly because I have been busy in the flesh world, and also because I have recently started contributing to The Pop-Up City, an online magazine that features concepts, designs and innovations from people in cities around the globe.

The Pop-Up City is a project in which we will explore new concepts, strategies and methods for a dynamic and flexible interpretation of contemporary urban life.

More than ever societies are strongly linked to global developments that have a substantial influence on the local scale. Changes take place continuously with more and more acceleration. Today’s world cities deal with many problems related to rapidly increasing international societal, cultural, technologic and economic transformation processes. More variableness in economic, political and cultural patterns leads to new expectations and renewals of dynamic capacities of the city. Our aim is to search for creative solutions regarding flexible urbanism and architecture.

The assignment of dealing consequently with the flexible city contains two important dimensions. On one hand the exploring of opportunities for temporary use of both private and public space which have become obsolete. On the other hand the search for new forms of construction, urban planning and architecture where principles of change, movement, (dis)appearance or extensions are embedded. Our aim is to create a network of a wide range of professionals who are interested in dynamic urbanism.

The idea of a dynamic urbanism is particularly appealing. Often, when we think about living in cities, we picture huge populations of transient, superficial and anonymous citizens living disconnected lives in busy, smoggy, grid-locked slums. However, growing numbers of people refuse to subscribe to this outmoded model of living.

People who strive for connection, but aren’t waiting for governments or corporations to provide the means to connect. Grass-roots, sharing communities are growing in cities across the world. I believe we need more commentary about these growing DIY urban communities and the creative ideas that they are working with. For more, read my Pop-Up City posts here.

crab colony on Bruny IslandWhat does this really mean?

Is it possible to have a truly democratic space on the internet for everyone to contribute?

I have been Twittering for a few months now, and have found this the most open place to contribute my own or hear other’s point of view. You can be highly political, or not. Its up to you.

However, the limitations of 140 characters may not work for all. Also it can be hard to keep on track. Pretty, shiny, juicy tit-bits of information contantly pop-up and its easy to be diverted.

Here is something newish: Open Forum (http://www.openforum.com.au/content/learning-change) This is what they say about what it is:

OpenForum.com.au is a non-partisan site that aims to stimulate focused discussion on social, political, economic, ecological and cultural issues facing us today.

The site accomplishes this in two significant ways; by promoting time-limited (and often outcomes-based) discussion on forums, and through less formal blogs, written by and for users of the site.

Now a collaborative thinktank is a great idea. They go on to say a little bit more about the site:

Open Forum is an independent collaborative think-tank built around an interactive discussion website hosted and moderated by Global Access Partners (GAP). It provides a platform for focused dialogue on social, political, economic, ecological and cultural issues and challenges.

The Forum is registration-based and enables participants to make connections, share their opinions and concerns, test their ideas, raise and discuss specific topics, suggest solutions and ultimately contribute to policy development and economic outcomes for government and business, as well as the democratic process in general.

With support from the Australian Government and a number of industry partners, the forum operates as a powerful web-based consultative mechanism enabling access to and by, key people in our community.

Sounds SERIOUS, doesnt it? Obviously, there will be no 140 characters mini-posts showing up here. Also, if you don’t have a post-graduate degree, political affiliations or connections with the movers and shakers of Australia, chances are you will be too intimidated to post here. Yes, you’ve got to have balls.

Anyhoo, back to twitter, here’s a post that interestingly, twitter put me onto.

Twitter the forum killer. Read it and join up, now!