2014 marks thirty years since the miners strike. To mark the anniversary, St. Helens art service and libraries have commissioned the 30 Years Of.. project from artists collective Re-Dock. In it, they are working with a group of ex-miners to capture their memories and engage with the younger generations, who've grown up in a St. Helens that no longer sends people underground to dig for coal.
Back in July I had the great pleasure of presenting at TEDxLiverpool. It was an impressive roster of speakers, even if you omit the "TED royalty" of Sir Ken Robinson.
Over on his blog, Stuart Ian Burns has written an comprehensive round-up of the whole event, with videos of the rest of the talks.
Richard Birkin has just released the online version of Night Sun, a rather beautiful combination of music, words and pictures.
The online version grew out of an installation that was part of Light Night in Nottingham earlier in the year. The installation was an interactive piece, where the music and visuals were triggered by members of the public touching and turning the crank of a toy music box.
At the start of July I was down in Reading for a Constructing Excellence Berkshire event to explore technology and cities. Together with architects HOOP and urban provocateur Julian Dobson we tried to design something a little different to the usual talks or workshop.
With the help of Professor Tim Dixon we kicked off setting out the local situation and how technology could evolve in our towns and cities - with Tim providing a Reading perspective and me presenting some alternative "smart" city thoughts.
The attendees and presenters then split into two groups to discuss and brainstorm an open-ended question of what a smart city might look like.
Then, following a break for some food and chatting, we came back together to hear Julian a more people-focused Luddite Analysis of Smart[er] Cities". After which we broke again into groups to imagine life a hundred years hence, and what decisions and actions from today we'd look back on as inspired, and which we'd find appalling.
The format seemed to work well, with plenty of discussion between everyone and plenty of ideas and opinions traded.
Read on for my slides and notes for the talk...
As part of marking the century since the start of the First World War, Let's Go Global were commissioned to run an art project taking a contemporary, conceptual view of the centenary.
It's a wide ranging project, spread across communities (centred on libraries) across Greater Manchester and anchored with an installation at Ordsall Hall in Salford.
Over the course of the project they're planting a hundred poppy plants, and wanted to connect what was happening with the poppies to the wider participants across the county. As a result they brought us on board to explore what could be done and then make it happen.
I'm just back from a lovely few days in Bahrain. I was there as a guest of the Bahraini eGovernment Authority, who had asked me to speak at the Bahrain International eGovernment Forum.
It was an interesting conference, on a topic that I don't normally have much dealing with. I was there to provide some information on the emerging topic of the Internet of Things (naturally).
Read on for the slides and notes for the talk.
Last week I gave a talk to a collection of health professionals and social care providers, to give them some background to the Internet of Things and its possibilities. It was a prelude to group discussions to try to identify some challenges that they face, which the IoT might be able to help address.
There's a follow-up event where we'll be bringing the participants of the first roundtable together with some IoT practitioners, designers and developers, to dig into the challenges and sketch out some possible solutions. Get in touch if you'd like to come along to that.
Here are the slides and notes from my talk - as ever, the notes are what I intended to say rather than a transcription of what eventually came out of my mouth...
Last week the British Library held an event titled "Internet Icons". In the British Library in London they had some great talks from people who had founded interesting and successful Internet-related businesses.
The talks were streamed online and to a few libraries around the country, including Liverpool. Each of the streaming locations had a talk before the event from a local Internet entrepreneur, and Adrian was asked to speak at Liverpool Central Library.
Here are the slides and notes for his talk.
As part of my preparation for my TEDxOldham talk - Internet Thinking for Cities - I ended up collecting together a number of blog posts and articles that helped inform my thinking.
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