The Culture, A World-City

A fictional city and setting to the 'Normal Future.' Also used as a sandbox for various projects and collaborations.
27 Jun 2013
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The Cul­ture is a fic­tion­al city and set­ting to our work in N 1 2 3. Born out of a pol­i­cy to reduce resource con­sump­tion, peo­ple have been incen­tivized by a pro­gres­sive form of basic income into clus­ter­ing up, and build­ing on top of each oth­er so as to min­i­mize their foot­print on the land and let it heal away from human pop­u­la­tion. And so, the city expand­ed ver­ti­cal­ly through addi­tive stra­ta of print­ed geopoly­mer.

By the roots lies a patch­work of fields, pools, quar­ries, and farms. All math­e­mat­i­cal­ly sub­di­vid­ed — from vital to less vital — in order to opti­mize dis­tances for resources to be car­ried over by agri­cul­tur­al drones. Resources then go upward in a pre-digest­ed and care­ful­ly curat­ed form along a net­work of arter­ies dou­bling as mag­net­ic roads. The inhab­i­tants of the cul­ture — or 'frenz' — indeed not only get water from their taps, but also mate­ri­als to feed and build. They occu­py opti­mal spaces, move freely, and aren't too both­ered by per­son­al prop­er­ty because they can re-print it all.

But this free-for-all auto­mat­ed utopia is the sur­face of it all. When it comes down to indi­vid­u­als, their belief sys­tems, the cul­ture is a fes­ter­ing pool of curiosi­ties and dig­i­tal super­sti­tions, desir­able to some, dis­tress­ing to others.

'Culture Generator' App

An appli­ca­tion to gen­er­ate 'cul­tures' based on a set of 15 parameters:

  1. Every rule has a ran­dom % of variation
  2. Flat, hor­i­zon­tal floors please!
  3. Human scale
  4. Some % of peo­ple want to be above others
  5. Tree-like Expan­sion and aging
  6. Recon­fig­u­ra­tion
  7. Opti­mal rout­ing of supplies
  8. Vari­able % of 'Phal­lo­mor­phism'
  9. Some Like the Sun
  10. Some Like Isolation
  11. Peo­ple Fol­low Branches
  12. Demo­graph­ic Maximum
  13. Vari­able Speed of Urban Development
  14. Forces of Nature
  15. Pro­por­tion­al Size of Agri­cul­tur­al Crops