Virreal Architecture For Pecha Kucha (Subtitled)


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In this presentation the inspiration for virreal architecture is explained and possible future developments are discussed.

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Virreal Architecture For Pecha Kucha (Subtitled)

  1. 1. The Hong Kong skyline during the daily lightshow with a thunderstorm overhead. This is the view that inspired me to take a different approach in designing for the Internet. One that shows more than the sum of its parts like this lightshow
  2. 2. Take the ING-house, the worldwide corporate headquarters: a building with allure, with a statement. It shows what this company is made of. But...
  3. 3. This is ING’s virtual presence. This site is functionally correct, but lacks all the traits the company shows in reality. It’s a ‘Portakabin painted in company colours’. To me it seems there is room for improvement.
  4. 4. A similar comparison is possible on a city level. This view of Rotterdam (as seen from another great headquarters, that of Unilever) shows a vibrant harbour city. When you approach this city you already feel the vibe, amplified by the skyline, the river, the action.
  5. 5. But this is Rotterdam online. Take away the name and you wouldn’t even know this is a world sea port (let alone where the city came from; it’s history). All the efforts in real life are lost in this site. Again: room for improvement.
  6. 6. And there is a tradition in making an impression, that answers to a human need for order. This, for example, is the chief house of a Malinese Dogon village. The thicker the roof, the bigger the impression.
  7. 7. This is why I set out to realize virreals; webpresences that portray beauty and ambition. Esthetics next to function in order to make a lasting impression.
  8. 8. Why the (different) approach? Well, when barren land is being developed, a construction appears. If the construction gets a function we call it a building, And when the building gains broader importance it becomes a landmark.
  9. 9. Why a different name? If something is noticed it will be described and if something is valued it will be characterized by a name. The word ‘website’ is generic; ‘virreal’ is more specific.
  10. 10. So, a well developed website and all its expression become a virtual reality and this is what I call a ‘virreal’. And it’s ambition should be to become a webmark.
  11. 11. Let me explain what this could mean by taking a point in case: my hometown Deventer. The river IJssel made the city. Because of it, it became part of the Hansa League which gave it its riches and its history.
  12. 12. Like the city of Brest, France, it could broaden its scope. Not limit the virtual domain to the municipal administration, but embrace all that happens within its virtual context.
  13. 13. But it should go further even. Use the web for what it is good at. Extend my vision beyond my eyesight; show me what is happening, where it happens and who is involved.
  14. 14. Dare to be different by implementing alternative interfaces; let me browse through the site like I would wander the old city!
  15. 15. Maybe even letting go everything for creative expression. Like you would add a statue to the city square, or like any other artwork in the public domain. R E A L I Z I N G L A V I E V I R T U E L L E Copyright 2007 Almar van der Krogt @
  16. 16. The next challenge is to break the virtual barrier. Possibly by using the little Internet- connected rabbits called Nabaztags. By their movements and random actions they can trigger additional senses.
  17. 17. The Angamos from Curanipe is leaving shore. Bien viaje! This way you could even reintroduce the waving relatives at the shore when the sailors take off. It brings information on real events to virtual life. Connecting to day-to-day life like this can get the city the virtual attention it seeks.
  18. 18. But then there is still the human urge to create something beyond that. A landmark that is almost greater than life itself; an attraction point to the border of controversy
  19. 19. To do this online could be creating a set of sites like my own. They build up to a centerpiece that is not yet as alluring as it could be, but it is an attraction point that brushes off on the surrounding elements and gives it additional value.
  20. 20. And, it is my ambition to create the virtual centerpieces that will have the same impact as the spire on top of the Chrysler building in NYC, which sole purpose was to make it the tallest building in the world (whatever that may be on the Internet). R E A L I Z I N G L A V I E V I R T U E L L E