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Author Archives: Karen Quinn Fung

Transit Pet Peeves: One person’s contest, another person’s social inclusion setback

Last week, TransLink announced that they are running a contest/campaign on their Facebook page involving riders’ pet peeves in transit. They are encouraging people to people to vote, elimination-style, on the behaviors observed on transit that people find most irritating. The incentives to do so, aside from that wonderful feeling of having gotten your feelings […]

Complexifiers and Simplifiers: some necessary nuance

Scott Berkun writes that there are two kinds of people in the world: simplifiers and complexifiers. Complexifiers are averse to reduction. Their instincts are to turn simple assignments into quagmires, and to reject simple ideas until they’re buried (or asphyxiated) in layers of abstraction. […] They take pride in consuming more bandwidth, time, and patience […]

Will the smarter city be built by love?

Source: ekosystem.org Jack Mason, an IBMer working on the IBM Smarter Cities Tumblr, wrote a couple weeks ago: As an IBMer working on Smarter Cities — and a New Yorker for much of my adult life — I’d like to observe that Adam Greenfield doesn’t know me, my motivations, or those of the thousands of […]

Convening a conversation between Usability and Planning Professionals

Summary (aka tl;dr) World Usability Day and World Town Planning Day are two events celebrated very close together, in the first week of November. I propose having a joint project or event to lay the groundwork for conversation between urban planners and user experience practitioners, and the insights each can bring for navigating the urban […]

Politics: from the belly of the beast to the depths of our hearts

Friend Chris Demwell passed along Kai Nagata‘s personal, detailed, and insightful blog post chronicling the change of heart and realizations that prompted him to leave his position at CTV News. His post flits between the critical, large-scale, and the intimate, small-scale, in a way that really speaks to me and reminds me of what I […]

Awkward as Planned: short-term pain for long-term Olympic Legacy?

Richard Layman linked to a recent post to a PriceWaterhouseCooper report on how Olympic or other mega-event legacy infrastructure can accelerate development by up to 30 years. He comments on how good planning is a big part of leveraging these opportunities into longer-term wins for the communities: Much of the time, events or projects for […]

Some thoughts on last night

We watched. We watched on TV. A camera perched somewhere high above the street showed us the scene at the Fanzone on Georgia Street. Wall-to-wall people. We’re glad we’re not there, we murmured. It was game 5 of the Stanley Playoffs, in Vancouver. I was at the Hurricane Grill in Yaletown — the first bar […]

The Crowdsourced City: at SFU City Program, and Open Gov West 2011

Some late reflections on The Crowdsourced City, which describes two things: first, it was an event at SFU Vancouver on May 10th; I then repurposed it as the departure point for an unconference I proposed and led at Open Gov West 2011 in Portland on May 14th. CrowdSourced City: the SFU City Presentation This event […]