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Category Archives: City, Soup to Nuts

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 […]

Disconnect: A toast to the #15 Bus, newly truncated

I live near Cambie Street in Vancouver. Cambie’s taken a bit of a beating for the past while. For 2 years there was a giant trench on the roadway as the Canada Line underground subway was being built using cut and cover methods; many family-owned businesses ceased to be during those fiscally trying times, as […]

StratML: sketching a start for Official Community Plans in XML

This post is a messy summary of where my thinking is at for using StratML for official community plans. Firstly, the StratML standard is largely still being defined (their progress can be messily tracked at XML.gov). Part 1 of the standard is available as a schema and covers 7 core elements of strategic plans, and […]

Bringing Historic Vancouver Maps into the Present and Future

I’m writing this blog post from Vancouver Open Data Hackathon. These are some takeaways from a conversation with Sue Bigelow from the Vancouver Archives. Sue has been interested in the potential applications of Map Rectifier on scans of maps of Vancouver created by the City of Vancouver over the years as part of their work. […]

Ideas for International Open Data Hackathon in Vancouver

This coming Saturday is International Open Data Hackathon day. In Vancouver, it’s happening at W2 Storyeum in Gastown (details via the ODHD wiki). There was a (very!) short session led by Aaron Gladders at BarCamp Vancouver on what we might focus our efforts on during the Open Data Hackathon, and we settled working on a […]

The vision of a technologist’s city: where people, spaces and information collide

“When,” asks Greg Lindsey in his Fast Company article, “did Silicon Valley become so obsessed with building cities?” His article describes the work of a company called Living PlanIT: Living PlanIT (pronounced “planet”) is the brainchild of Steve Lewis and Malcolm Hutchinson, a pair of IT veterans who met when Lewis was still a top […]

NetSquared Camp: Session on Non-Profits and Open Civic Data

I volunteered to lead a session on Non-Profits and Open Civic Data at yesterday’s NetSquaredCamp, and we talked and thought about how non-profits might make use of open data as part of their advocacy and convening conversations on what is important to us in improving our neighbourhoods and daily lives.

What to do with Professional Authority and Local Knowledge in Planning?

Many moments stand out in my memory of Vancouver TransitCamp, the unconference on public transit I helped convene back in 2007. One of those moments was when I got to talking to an acquaintance of mine who works as a planner. The precise trajectory of the conversation eludes me now, but I have a clear […]