John Thackara has a new book: “In the Bubble: Designing in a Complex World.” Looks like an interesting read. Here’s an excerpt from the introduction:
In a less-stuff-more-people world, we still need systems, platforms, and services that enable people to interact more effectively and enjoyably. These platforms and infrastructures will require some technology and a lot of design. Some services will help us share the load of everyday activities: washing clothes on the roof of apartment blocks, looking after children, communal kitchens and gardens, communal workshops for maintenance activities, tool and equipment sharing, networks and clubs for health care and prevention. The most important potential impact of wireless communications, for example, will be on the resource ecologies of cities. Connecting people, resources, and places to each other in new combinations, on a real-time basis, delivers demand-responsive services that, when combined with location awareness and dynamic resource allocation, have the potential to reduce drastically the amount of hardwarefrom gadgets to buildingsthat we need to function effectively. Most of us are potentially both users and suppliers of resources. The principle of use, not own can apply to all kinds of hardware: buildings, roads, vehicles, officesand above all, people. For more or less anything heavy and fixed, we don’t have to own them just know how and where to find them.