J'étais ici!


Project idea - 

Place booths in different places in the city, with a screen inside (Photo-booth style).
When entering the booth, you have to answer the following "questions" - 
1. create a shape, on the map of paris, that contains all the areas that you have never been to.
2. write "name + était ici".
3. enter you phone number / email.

In addition, a picture of you is taken.

As you leave the booth, you get a sticker with the text "était ici", as you have written it.


All appeals done on the same day are processed, and the next morning each of the participants receives an email/sms with an address.
The location is the center of the area that has received the highest score - meaning, the most unvisited area. 

During the night, the pictures of all participants (along with "name", as the person wrote it the other day) are printed and flyposted in the location. 

The people are invited to see the area, with their pictures around it. - and add their "était ici" sticker.


*It is impossible to see the images or location on the internet. Only at the end of the project, the project website will show a Paris map with all locations, according to date, and suitable images.



When I told people about this idea, one told me about the artist JR, which flyposts large black-and-white photographic images in public locations, in a manner similar to the appropriation of the built environment by the graffiti artist. So we can "make" a collaboration :)


String Prototype

The Croatian-Austrian design collective Numen/For Use created 3D grid of ropes inside inflatable String Prototype installation.
The installation consisted of an inflatable white cube filled with thin ropes that were tied up on opposite sides of the space.

When the cube was deflated the ropes loosened, allowing the installation to decompress. When inflated, the ropes tightened into a grid strong enough to hold the weight of a person.

numenfor-use-creates-3d-grid-of-ropes-inside-inflatable-installation_dezeen_ss_6 numenfor-use-creates-3d-grid-of-ropes-inside-inflatable-installation_dezeen_ss_7 numenfor-use-creates-3d-grid-of-ropes-inside-inflatable-installation_dezeen_ss_9

Do Ho Suh: cause and effect

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Questionnaire #2


This week, I gave people a map of Paris and asked to draw two shapes on the map.
The first, a shape that contains inside all the places that they go to during the week; such as home, school, work, running track, market, etc..
The second, a shape that contains inside all the places that they have never been to.

Some examples of some of these sketches (the blue shapes are the 'present areas' and the red shapes are the 'non-present areas):



All shapes superimposed one on the other.

"Present areas" - 




"Non-present areas" - 




Both areas together - 




Building the given curves in 3D software;

A line-sketch 3D model of both areas - 



A full-body 3D model of both areas - 


A patch model of the "present areas" (in a few different accuracy levels) - 



Now, I have written a code that looks at each point of the map, and calculates how many people have marked it as a present-area and how many as a non-present-area. 
For example, if 5 people have marked it as present-area and 2 as a non-present, it will be at a height of 3.

I have tried creating a 3d model from this information. here are the results so far - 



Here is a video showing the model - video.


The last model in made with "distance=5".
With "distance=1" it will look like that - 



Physical Programming of Freeform Folding in Soft Matter | by Dana Zelig


Polystyrene is traditionally characterized by high stiffness, tensile strength, and low weight, making it advantageous for many industrial applications. I have programmed polystyrene to transform autonomously by printing active material on fully cured flexible polystyrene and applying heat as an activator. In each, a single piece of plastic transforms its shape to create aerodynamic advantage and tunable performance. Contrary to traditional mechanical activation, this method requires no complex electronics, sensors, or actuators; it decreases the total weight and minimizes failure-prone mechanisms.

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Systematic Landscapes


An installation by Maya Lin.

It tries to translate landscapes, two real and one imagined, into the materials of architecture while inviting viewers to move under, on, or through the works.

Each work is composed of a single material. Each, configured to evoke a different aspect of landscape, went through the same process of design: creation of a three-dimensional model in Lin's studio, translation via scanning or plotting into digital drawings, and finally, full scale construction in Seattle.

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3D Sculpture Puzzle


A puzzle game, built in layers, to create a 3D sculpture.

Vietnam Veterans Memorial


The Vietnam Veterans Memorial is a 2-acre (8,000 m²) national memorial in Washington, DC. It honors U.S. service members of the U.S. armed forces who fought in the Vietnam War, service members who died in service in Vietnam/South East Asia, and those service members who were unaccounted for (Missing In Action) during the War.

Its construction and related issues have been the source of controversies, some of which have resulted in additions to the memorial complex. The Memorial Wall was designed by American architect Maya Lin. In 2007, it was ranked tenth on the "List of America's Favorite Architecture" by the American Institute of Architects. As a National Memorial it is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

Lin's conception was to create an opening or a wound in the earth to symbolize the gravity of the loss of the soldiers. The design was initially controversial for what was an unconventional and non-traditional design for a war memorial.

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I have created a short questionnaire, which can be found here.

The questionnaire askes the participants about their age, gender, as well as home and work/school address. In addition it asks about areas in Paris where they like to be during the day/night, and areas that they will not go during the day/night and why.

About 20 people have answered the questionnaire so far, and here are the results.

*The pink dots represent women, and the green ones represent men.

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Paris No-Go Zones


"No-go zone" is an area in a town barricaded off to civil authorities by a force such as a paramilitary, or barred to certain individuals or groups. It has also been used to refer to areas undergoing insurgency where ruling authorities have lost control and are unable to enforce sovereignty.



An expert on Fox News outraged and baffled members of the French public after listing eight "no-go zones" for non-Muslims in Paris, areas where Islamic rules were followed rather than those of the French. 

National Security Analyst Nolan Peterson, who spent two years in Paris a decade ago, told the channel that areas within a ten-minute drive from the Eiffel Tower were comparable with Baghdad, adding that he had seen people wearing t-shirts supporting Osama Bin Laden. 

The sentiments were echoed by Nigel Farage, the leader of the Eurosceptic Ukip party in the UK, who said that the zones in Paris matched a rise in the "big ghettos" of Europe.


But PM Valls, who was joined by interior minister Bernard Cazeneuve said: “The authority of the state will be guaranteed. There are no no-go zones” before acknowledging that there are “particularly difficult areas”.

But police unions disagreed with the prime minister.

“Of course there are no-go zones in France where the police cannot intervene and do their jobs in safety,” Denis Jacob from the union Alternative police-CFDT told The Local. “And it’s the same for fire fighters or pretty much any representative of the state.

“The police can’t apply the law in these areas, they are attacked. If the police can’t do their work it’s because there are criminals and delinquents who don’t respect the law.”

“It’s not just a problem with this government it’s a problem with all French governments over the last 20 years. Governments will never admit there are no-go zones because it’s a sign of a failed state."








NYC Crime Map


An interactive map displaying information and statistics about crimes in New York City. Allows 'playing' with map-type, crime type, dates.

Urban Risk Lab - MIT


The Urban Risk Lab at MIT develops methods and technologies to embed risk reduction and preparedness into the design of cities and regions to increase the resilience of local communities. 

Operating at the intersection of ecology and infrastructure, rural and urban, research and action; the Urban Risk Lab is an interdisciplinary organization of researchers and designers. With a global network of partners, the Lab is a place to innovate on techniques, processes, and systems to address the complexities of seismic, climatic, and hydrologic risks. We engage in action research through extensive field work and community workshops to focus on the needs of diverse cultures and contexts. We aspire to change the course of current global development trends through a radical shift in education and action to proactively embed preparedness and risk reduction in this rapidly urbanizing world.



City.Risks is a European Union RIA funded project under the Horizon 2020 Framework Programme. City.Risks places information sharing at the center of addressing security challenges in large urban environments.


The core platform designed by City.Risks comprises an infrastructure for managing user communities and policies, that will allow citizen users to specify their profile and preferences: e.g. to configure how to view information and when/what notifications and alerts should be received. It also provides a finegrained mechanism for allowing citizen users to create (possibly nested) communities, like family, friends, colleagues, neighbours and to specify rules and policies for sharing information and experiences among them, e.g. which users can see one’s location, or to/from which users to send/receive alerts. The City.Risks platform provides the open APIs and its set of interfaces plus a SDK, i.e. an implementation tooling that allows third parties to build custom-made applications and to integrate them into the City.Risks platform. It also includes components for low level system monitoring and event logging.


  • To provide a more in-depth and fine-grained analysis and understanding of the factors of fear of crime in urban environments, investigating and correlating both dimensions of objective aspects, related to the actual surroundings and crime incidents, and subjective aspects, related to societal and psychological factors covering the citizens' perspective.
  • To foster and facilitate the engagement of citizens in better addressing security challenges, by encouraging and enabling their bidirectional interaction with the relevant authorities as well as among themselves in trusted networks and broader communities.
  • : To provide a platform and technologies for collecting, integrating, managing and visualizing contextualized, crime-related information -both historical and real-time- and using it for more effective and timely prevention and response to security threats.
  • To design and develop an ecosystem of mobile services that will transform the citizens' smart phones and tablets into primary tools for sharing safety-critical information with the appropriate authorities and among them.
  • To design and build new lightweight and user friendly small sensor devices for enabling the detection of specific cases of criminality, such as identifying and locating stolen object utilizing the citizens as sensors.
  • To validate and evaluate the developed solutions and technologies in real-life scenarios and settings, via extensive pilot trials that will be setup and operated at several selected cities.
  • To produce flexible and sustainable business models, best practices and replication plans for further deployment and exploitation of City.Risks results in other urban environments, maximizing the project impact and opening up new market opportunities for urban security technologies.
Technical Approach

The main concept of City.Risks is to place information sharing at the center of addressing security challenges in large urban environments:

  • what – diverse types and sources of information need to be analysed, integrated and exploited, including historical crime data and statistics, victimization reports, demographic data, maps of transportation networks and other city infrastructures, available physical sensors, news feeds and the Web.
  • whom – citizens are in the centre of the approach, actively being engaged as both targets and sources of information, in a bidirectional communication channel between either citizens and the authorities or among citizens themselves within trusted networks or broader communities.
  • when – the ultimate goal is to ensure timely sharing of appropriate information both for preventing security threats as well as mitigating their impact when they actually occur.
  • how – by primarily utilising citizens' smart phones and mobile devices for appropriately visualising the needed information as well as feeding information back to the platform.