Nanonoia by Jessica Charlesworth


This project is entitled NANONOIA and was presented at the Proximities workshop in November 2007. In this presentation I will discuss its development by highlighting my process and design decisions and ending with further space for explorations.There are two phases to this project:

PHASE ONE: Influences

First phase addresses my influences, research and initial questions. The second phase further explores the complexities of my scenarios: raising more questions. My initial influence was from an article discussing the current applications of nano technologies in commercial organisations. The article discussed the future impact of hand held nano sensors that could indicate whether the parson you are sitting nxt to on the bus has flu or whether the street you are walking down has a high carbon monoxide count or the salad you are abotu to it has a bacteria that will cause food poisoning. This hyper awareness of our immediate future health raised question of paranoia + future phobias and implication this tech will have on psycho somatic disorders.

This lead to the question what of this paranoia were to escalate and begin to affect interactions within our relationships and environmen?

My visual research: detection + protection. How these products/systems already affect relationships and environments.

Acute sensitivity: what if protection/detection became biokleptic:ie borrow biological processes from immune system and manipulate them to enable physical manifestations into more meaningful signals.

Health supplement provides individual with a sixth sense by boosting and augmenting the immune system.

Could supplement provide individual with a sixth sense? Offering a new code of reference: PHYSICAL MANIFESTATION

Each physical manifestation illustrates the individual’s reaction to their surroundings. Each symbol translates into the individual’s probability of contracting a virus from certain contagions.

These illustrations created more questions: how would this biokleptic acute sensitivity be provided to an individual?

PHASE TWO: Who is the service provider?

This second phase explores further complexities of this scenario. How would a service create further implications to society? The 6sense health supplement that enhances our immune system.

Is the service publicly run, privately invested? Designed various touch points that provide further questions and future scenarios.

Would the service provider offer….?

Inductions and starter packs?

DNA tests?

Tailored treatment + applications

Could one could learn to read themselves and translate their symbols, a dictionary for themselves

A manual that offers various tips on what to do in an emergency?

(code of conduct/charter) (who and how is support structure exist in your life, subscription?)- nicorette style

Similar to diabetics, 6sense members have own inconspicuous ways to gain access to certain areas and public services. Private members clubs

Depending on location, provided with various maps identifying nearest quarantine zone (food and water and treatment safe house) (casa segura, humane borders projects)

Own individual proxemic contingency chart, Indicates minimum distance 6 sense members need to be to reduce risk to disease level.

This service provider and the various products they offer raise further implications in society and the interactions individuals have in environment and between relationships. Does it increase hypochondria cases?, somatic syndromes, obsessive compulsive disorders/phobias

What might be the propaganda poster campaign? E.g. NHS tissue. Underground politeness/terrorist warnings; use your senses

READ MORE about the future of the 6sense health supplement HERE>

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Distance, anxiety and built form

David Sibley – Geography, University of Leeds

I will talk about the anxieties associated with being ‘too near’ or ‘too distant’ from others. Drawing on modern re-workings of the psychoanalytic theories of Melanie Klein, I will suggest that some kinds of socio-spatial relations can be interpreted as manifestations of psychotic and depressive anxiety. Focusing on the problem of distantiation and the representation of others as shady stereotypes, I will discuss ways in which the built environment exacerbates psychotic anxiety and consider how we might counter psychotic tendencies through design.

Community cohesion as safe living: delimiting the obligations to and dangers of proximity

Anne-Marie Fortier – Sociology, Lancaster University

In this paper I discuss how ‘cohesion’ figures in government policy strategies targeted at local communities and neighbourhoods. By going to the ‘ways of seeing’ that policy documents open up, I consider how policy discourses ‘figure social life in certain imaginary ways’ (Butler 2002). I argue that community cohesion is a governing strategy that designs particular groups and practices both in and out of the social space of locality. Defined most recently as promoting ‘safe and tolerant communities that are close, vibrant [and] resilient’ (Cabinet Office 2007), cohesion is conceived as the antidote to violence, conflict and the threats posed my terrorism and extremism. In this paper, I consider how the politics of community cohesion have shifted, since 2001, from celebrating diversity as an asset to making diversity a destabilising factor for local communities. I consider the implications of this shift in the reconfiguration of Britain’s multicultural ethnoscape, which is refracted through class, race, gender and generation (note that I will not have time to develop all of these in the paper). Overall, I argue that policy discourses on community cohesion discursively emplace individuals within webs of social or institutional interactions that prescribe ways of living (together) and feeling for the community. Thus the management of diversity is not only about the management of encounters in literal spatial forms (such as linking projects bussing kids between ‘faith schools’) but these relations are imagined through specific emotional and ethical injunctions such as mixing, tolerance and adhering to ‘core civic values’. Moreover, these injunctions are imagined in the ambivalent spatial terms of obligations to and dangers of proximity.

Buried But Not Forgotten?: The Secret of Yucca Mountain

Yucca Mountain repository diagram Nuclear waste markers Landscape of Thorns Blue Yucca plant nuclear waste markers

Brian P. Bloomfield & Theo Vurdubakis – Department of Organisation, Work and Technology, Lancaster University

ABSTRACT: Yucca Mountain in Nye County, Nevada (USA), is the site of a very ambitious project to construct an underground repository for high-level nuclear waste. The object of scientific research and planning for over 20 years, and still facing significant political and legal challenges, the project aims to transport thousands of tons of radioactive waste from sites across the USA for storage at Yucca Mountain where it is meant to be kept safe for some10,000 years. Examination of the project highlights the relationships between social boundaries (proximity), language, and risk, geology and technoscience, in which the effort to realise safety materially (through the repository, and its situation within the local geology and geography) is complemented by efforts to communicate the dangers held within the mountain to the unknown (and unknowable) peoples of the distant future.

LINKS:

US department of Energy: Civilian Radioactive Waste Management

Yucca Mountian homepage

Peter Schwartz (founder of Global Business Network & wrote The Art of the Long View: see my FOSK blog entry) writes about the future of Yucca Mountain on The Long Now Foundation blog

Death in the Wrong Place: altered lifescapes of the 2001 Foot & Mouth Disease disaster

cows.png

Foot and Mouth Disease Lifescapes’ – Maggie Mort, Institute for Health Research, Lancaster University

In May 2003, two years and three months after the outbreak of the world’s worst epidemic of Foot & Mouth Disease, a small group of people gathered on a bleak windy former airfield site to commemorate the slaughter and burial of more than one million farm animals. Great Orton was the largest disposal site in Cumbria, the county in Britain worst hit by the disaster. The former airfield became the scene of a massive disposal operation in 2001 after the British army was brought in to handle a crisis prompted by the sheer scale of the slaughter. The mass slaughter, often of healthy animals taken out under the contiguous cull, ‘dangerous contact’ rationales, or simply misdiagnosed, was all the more horrific because of its being out of place and out of time. This talk explores some of the alterations and disruptions to places, and the sense of place, enforced by the 2001 disaster. Such alterations involved both the symbolic/exotic, as in the memorial site at Great Orton or the acquisition of the ‘culled’ identity, and the everyday nexus of people/place/work routines. Combined, such disruption to so many aspects of individual and community lifescapes created a deep sense of disorder:

“There was no normality, normality had gone.” The term lifescape is used as a vehicle for the complexity of spatial, emotional and ethical dimensions of the relationship between landscape, livestock, farming and rural communities.

Download >The Foot & Mouth Disease Lifescapes presentation

The prison cell and the third space

priosn-cell-model.jpg

Happiness is Door-Shaped: Issues of Control and Safety in Prison – Anita Wilson, Literacy research centre, Lancaster University

‘Happiness is door shaped’ is a phrase well-known to those of us who undertake long-term sustained prison ethnographies. We hear it uttered by disillusioned, ‘old-style’ prison officers who are uncomfortable with contemporary prison policy and its ‘modern’ ideas of prisoner rehabilitation through socialisation rather than isolation. Happiness for these officers is achieved by putting prisoners ‘behind the door’, thus creating a protective barrier that maintains the distance between ‘us’ (the keepers) and ‘them’ (the kept). Confining prisoners to their cells appears to make these officers feel secure, protecting them from risk of attack, disease, or emotional attachment to or from prisoners.

Ironically, while not exactly ‘happy’, and albeit for quite different reasons, many prisoners are agreeable to such distanciation. What officers see as confinement, prisoners see as liberation. Time spent ‘behind the door’ provides them with a much needed opportunity for contemplation, for ‘personal’ time, and for relaxation. What staff see as punitive, prisoners see as a welcome escape from their day to day proximity to shouting, jostling, fighting, bullying, anger, fear and distress.

However, while ‘door-shaped happiness’ for officers is achieved through the single act of protecting themselves from contact with prisoners, ‘ door-shaped happiness’ for prisoners involves engagement with complex and continual acts of transformation, which take on any number of subtle and personalised forms, and respond to the status of the person and the place in which they find themselves. They identify some nuanced strategies for resilience and survival, that draw on the practices of social rather than institutional worlds.

This paper takes a look behind various prison doors to reveal how prisoners create some of their own places of ‘safe living’ as a way of countering the ‘door-shaped unhappiness’ of imposed confinement.

‘The School Journey: visible and invisible dangers’

A childs depiction of air pollution and the school journey

Pollution data


Duncan Whyatt and Marion Walker, Geography, Lancaster University

ABSTRACT:

This paper stems from an ESRC funded project that uses a combination of traditional and novel techniques to gain a deeper understanding of the school journey. A group of 30 teenagers were asked to use a customised mobile phone application, which automatically recorded their routes, to take photographs and write texts to describe their journeys. These images and texts were subsequently used in interviews with the teenagers to explore factors influencing the choice of route. In this paper we focus on visible and invisible dangers associated with such journeys and consider how this information may be used in the design of safer journeys.

Download The school journey presentation