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friday :: december 23, 2005
pgs versus gps: mapOmatix

Looking back on several generations of mapping tools and projects, related in particular to the 'locative media' trend, still we feel that some levels of representation are missing in most of the maps that can be produced. We are interested in locating collectives and the activity of the multitude rather than into locating individualistic practices. We suspect that the logic under which some geospecific mapping projects are developed is the logic of the market or other self referent narratives.

A subjective positioning system would be developed after working on questions such as what is the meaning of location when the activities that are mapped are constituted by human practices? Some inmaterial entities are missing in the mapping of human activities, for example, how can you trace the influence of a writer in a network of conversations? When trying to give location to the inmaterial, ephemeral, distributed and non objective nature of for instance, human labor, human play and civil participation, it seems that all monitoring-based systems will fail in locating the subjective nature of flows of human activity and the processes involved.

Systems of information are based on a logic of identification and tracking which becomes insufficient and dangerous. Insufficient because it doesn´t relate to inmaterial information as joy, fear or participation and dangerous because it potentially may be used to execute surveillance and control. Within a spotting system using Global Positioning Systems (GPS) or Radio Frequency IDentification (RFID), who will guarantee that our privacy is protected and that the rights of secondary citizens ( immigrants, sin papeles, homeless, sex workers, ... ) will be respected and will not this technology for tracking bodies be only a way to control anyone that may be a menace to the dominating model?

Tracking technologies are insufficient to describe inmateriality. If the description of territories is only based on geographical data ( GPS ), how can we draw a clear picture of human actions, history and struggles? How can maps be made to represent the inmaterial labor of such people who cannot afford expensive technology when the techno- positivist approach to cartography is the only one proposed ?

A series of reinventions of the city are being performed by people trying to find alternative ways to live in urban environments. These reinventions work as multiple forms of appropriations and ways to bend city programs based on the most efficient ways to allow consumption. Different practices working on ideas related to the free, the open and implementing ways to innovate in civil participation, self mediation and software culture. The writtings and early psychogeographic interventions of Situationist International, of those as Asger Jorn, Constant and Guy Debord as well as the categories of daily consumption and rhythmanalysis described by Henri Lefebvre are to be seen as operating in the cultural background of these reinventions. 'A different city for a different life' (Constant) may be the moto under which these innovations develop ways to avoid or to alternate dominant narratives such as consumption, profit and competitivity.

Nevertheless we think we have to be conscious of marketing agendas always hungry for novelty. We can be sure that any possible form of innovation whether artistic or technological is potentially suitable for its incorporation into the market, even if this innovations deal with new ways to live the cities. What would be the ways to maintain independence from market logics? >from *PGS versus GPS : On Psycho/Subjective Geographic Systems* by elpueblodechina dialoguing with yves degoyon ( MapOMatix ).

related context
mapOmatix, a psycho geographic system (pgs), a geo-wiki, a story-teller for the multitude.
> al jwarizmi, a new generation prototype for realtime communication-creation over free networks based on horizontal relations between agents taking part in it.
> gollum. streaming tools for social networks. gollum want to privide tools for the al-warizmi project
> maptools, resources in the open source mapping community.
> carto.net, SVG, cartography and geography.
> satellite culture: global positioning systems, inuit wayfinding, and the need for a new account of technology. the risk of turning landscapes into constructed entities or commodities. december, 2005
> how does your city affect you?. november 4, 2005
> placelab: location-aware computing. october 14, 2005
> geoserver: open access to geographic data. may 27, 2005
> satellite navigation for blind people. june 11, 2003

mapOmatix tools to distillate human practices
and avoid subjective diffidence

sonic flow
tracing activities' location [stream]
tracing activities' location [download]

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