At Parsons, I wrote a thesis for the MFA Design and Technology program. On one level, the thesis is about a web platform for Cyclists. On another level, it explores my notion of situation-based networks.
Abstract: This mobile web platform for bicyclists enables them to connect with other riders in their city. In particular, it fosters community among people who frequent similar paths by making their common but solitary experience more visible. Cyclee users might chat about routes and hazards, partner for a commute, or develop ideas for advocacy and infrastructure. This platform goes beyond existing social ties and makes new connections among neighbors. Rather than broadcasting about an observation to friends or the world atlarge, a user’s note naturally and effortlessly targets riders who need this information. The platform and community evolve in tandem, an asynchronous critical mass bike ride.
This thesis explores the potential of online platforms to foster ad hoc communities among offline neighbors. It proposes that a situation-based network can create responsive and agile relationships deeply rooted in everyday experience. These connections can create feedback loops and resiliency that benefit individuals, communities, and their city.