What if ‘smart’ cities served their citizens? (Guardian link.) 

Typically, I’m wary of about a third of Cory Doctorow’s ideas. “The case for cities that aren't dystopian surveillance states” is a rare piece that I can get behind.

“If we decide to treat people as sensors, and not as things to be sensed—if we observe Kant’s injunction that humans should be ‘treated as an end in themselves and not as a means to something else’—then we can modify the smart city to gather information about the *things* and share that information with the *people*.

Imagine a human-centred smart city that knows everything it can about things. It knows how many seats are free on every bus, it knows how busy every road is, it knows where there are short-hire bikes available and where there are potholes. It knows how much footfall every metre of pavement receives, and which public loos are busiest.

What it doesn’t know is *anything about individuals in the city*. It knows about things, not people.“

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What if ‘smart’ cities served their citizens? (Guardian link.) 

@Verdigris This is really cool!

[*growls at 'human' though*]

...Although I'm not sure I'd be fully comfortable with my devices keeping tabs on everything I do even if it's kept private. Like, predictive text makes me slightly uncomfortable. Just it should be optional and able to be turned off.

re: What if ‘smart’ cities served their citizens? (Guardian link.) 

@IceWolf The spirit of the ‘device that you own’ rather than the ‘corporate spy you tolerate on your person because surrounding society makes life difficult otherwise’ is that you’d be able to turn off whatever functions you didn’t care for.

re: What if ‘smart’ cities served their citizens? (Guardian link.) 

@Verdigris Awesome! :3

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