Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Maps of Mobility?

Google unveiled a free, three-dimensional satellite mapping technology Tuesday that is part flight simulator, part video game and part world atlas. Google Earth allows users to zoom in from space, simulate flying above terrian or a city, get direcections...etc

Article is:

Google's free 3-D service brings views of Earth down to the PC

100 million go online in China

The number of internet users in China has risen above 100 million for the first time, according to reports in the country's state media.

Only the US now has more web surfers as young and old Chinese take to the internet in record numbers.

The figure is expected to grow rapidly in the next few years.

China's economic boom is behind the dramatic rise as increasing personal wealth means more people are able to buy computers and go online.

See full article here


World broadband numbers in Q1 2005

ZDNet, June 25, 2005

World broadband lines reached 164 million in Q1 2005, up 52 million lines since Q1 2004.

The United Status leads, with 36.5 milion lines. China remains in second place with 28.3 million, followed by Japan, South Korea, France, and Germany.

The cosmobilties network

I am very pleased to inform you about the new cosmobilities network homepage ( It is completely reviseed and re-designed in its performance. We added new buttons to improve information quality and transparancy.

Please, help us to be up to date for the future with all sorts of information about mobility research. All activities of the cosmobilities network and its members may be documented here as well as information of particular interest. But we need your help for this. Keep us informed!

If you plan any events, conferences, workshops etc., please, let us know. We will quickly post your announcements to the website. If you publish books or articles, circulate calls for papers, abstracts etc., the cosmobilities network site will be pleased to support you in spreading your information widely and quickly.

There is a download sector for all sorts of papers, workshop contributions etc. Please, use it for your purposes. The more information we offer the more the cosmobilities network will be present in all different fields of research and communication. And the presence of the network and the work of its members will improve the situation for mobility research in the future.

Lab findings suggest reason cell phones and driving don't mix

Here is another study linking car accidents with driving.

Interestingly there is a good collection of articles to be found at the Car
Talk Site. The link is:

One of the articles is:

Multitasking: You can't pay full attention to both sights and sounds

The reason talking on a cell phone makes drivers less safe may be that the brain can't simultaneously give full attention to both the visual task of driving and the auditory task of listening, a study by a Johns Hopkins University psychologist suggests.

The study, published in a recent issue of "The Journal of Neuroscience," reinforces earlier behavioral research on the danger of mixing mobile phones and motoring. (see above link for full article)

Friday, June 24, 2005

24/7 - Always-On Teens

This LA Times story is a good one.

In a not-at-all unusual month, Will Wu spent more than 10,000 minutes on his mobile phone — an average of 5 1/2 hours a day.

Sometimes he talked, sometimes he listened. But most of the time, the 15-year-old just dialed up a friend and left the phone on. Connected only by wireless headsets, Will and his pal spent entire days — together, but apart — shopping, snacking, doing homework and even nodding off to sleep.

"If I ever wanted to talk I could just say something into the phone and there'd be someone on the other end. You wouldn't have to dial," said Will, a sophomore at Miramonte High School in Orinda, east of San Francisco, whose Cingular Wireless calling plan includes free calls to any other Cingular customer. "Basically it was convenient."

Like an increasing number of youths growing up in an age of cheap mobile phones and fast Internet connections, Will is connected 24/7 to family and friends through an array of gadgetry. So obsessed are teens with devices like digital music players, cellphones, digital cameras and hand-held organizers, that 15-year-old girls are now the world's top consumers of computer chips, said Chuck Byers, director of global marketing at chip maker Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.

Children these days get cellphones as early as elementary school and pick up computer-speak abbreviations — AFK for "away from keyboard," for instance, or A/S/L, meaning "age/sex/location?" — at an age when they are memorizing state capitals for social studies class.

"Teenagers have adopted this technology very aggressively, in part because it's inexpensive now, and it's mobile — and everything a teenager does is about being mobile and untethered," said David Greenfield, a professor of clinical psychiatry at the University of Connecticut. "With the complexity of our world and the scheduling kids have compared with 25, 30 years ago, it's a newer way of connecting socially."

Here Comes Body Area Network

Digital Human Body Communication was first unveiled to the public. It is also called as BAN (Body Area Network), as it handles communication between devices using the human body as a medium. [via Telecoms Korea]

ban_01.jpg Electronics and Telecommunications Research Institute (ETRI) said that although only a small amount of data, such as information on a name card, can be transmitted at the moment because the data transmission speed is just to be 2.4Kbps, the speed will be improved to 1MB within the yearend.

ETRI explained that BAN can be utilized in numerous ways, such as touch based authentification service, electronic payment service, e-business card service, and touch based advertisement service.

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Selling photos not yet taken....

Hello everyone:

An attempt to get funding for an important trans siberian conference!

Here is your chance to buy a photo i haven't taken yet on ebay - search for 'elly clarke' from the home page, or click on

it is another-ditch-attempt to get funding for this trans siberian conference!

if you click on it it'll look like people are interested and increase my chances of persuading someone to part with their cash for something that doesn't exist yet.. please pass it on. or, if you have better suggestions for how i might be able to raise money for this event that i've been invited to participate in (see more about it at please let me know. The arts council, of course, turned me down and the first installment of 1000 euros is due 11th july. my project is to make a series of interviews with passengers on the trans siberian during the conference, in their own language, through the use of written cue cards. the whole event is being supported by the Kiasma museum of contemporary art in Helsinki.

any help/suggestions/clickings on the thing most appreciated

Many thanks - Elly

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Urban Mobility

Another urban mobile project in the lines of Yellow Arrow and Grafedia, called MapHub, located in Pittsburgh, PA. It's about shared urban storytelling and enables residents to for search and publish information about their city.

IconCircle3.gif Create a sonic landscape of Pittsburgh by calling in cellphone recordings from around the city. Sounds from the Heard Hub launched February 1st will be on displays in Karsruhe, Germany, at the Center for Arts and Media through August 2005.

To participate, all you have to do is create a profile then search for users or Hubs in your city. Create your own Hub to publish location based information.

There is a second project, HeardHub2, made possible by the MapHub web application.

For HeardHub2, three performers will reconstruct soundscape elements into a composition in real time, from sounds recorded to the HeardHub database using mobile devices. Audience members, friends, and people walking by will be able to call a number from their cell phone to record sounds from anywhere in the city.

Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Social Fabric

The Social Fabric is a representation of your social world, displayed as a single visual array on your mobile phone. It does not replace your address book or calendar but keeps you subtly informed about which relationships are prospering, which you have neglected, and the overall state of your social fabric.

A pdf of the 'social fabric thesis report' can also be found on the above link.

A mobile tale of three cities

A mobile tale of three cities is the wonderful title of an International Herald Tribune article about sociological research into cultural differences in the way people use mobile phones -- a juicy combination of sociology, business forecasting, and technology assessment. For example, Londoners from every socio-economic stratum use wireless Bluetooth earpieces, Parisians use wired hands-free sets that can be used with motorcycle helmets, but in Madrid, "almost nobody uses hands-free sets."

Wednesday, June 08, 2005


CALL FOR PAPERS 7-9th September 2006 Singapore
organised byAsia Research Institute
Recent years have witnessed a seemingly relentless surge in the movement of tourists ‘of Asian origin’. Indeed, bodies such as the World Tourism Organisation (WTO), confidently predict that over the coming decades Asia will have the fastest growing population of tourists on the move in the world. Despite such predictions, very little attention has been given to the social, cultural and political implications of Asia’s transformation from mere host destination into a region of mobile consumers. Hosted by the Asia Research Institute, this workshop sets out to address this gap by offering the first sustained examination of tourism in Asia by Asian tourists.

Paper proposals including 250-word abstracts and 5-line biography should be submitted on the attached form, and sent to Dr Tim Winter by 1st November 2005. Successful applicants will be advised by 1st December and will be urged to send in a completed paper by July 1st 2006. Some funding will be available for those in the Asian Region, post-graduate students, and others unable to fund themselves. It is hoped that the workshop will lead to a publication path-breaking in both Tourism and Asian Studies.

Proposed Themes include:

Media, Popular Culture and the Packaging of Place
From Tourism to Migration to Expatriation; Identities on the move
Heritage Politics and ‘Re-Orienting’ the Past
Visions of the Exotic and the lure of Paradise
Tourism and the Urban
The State, Community and Minority; the Role of Tourism for Development
Body Economics; from Health Tourism to Contagious Diseases
Sensing the local; the Spiritual and the Corporeal

Further enquiries should be directed to Dr Tim Winter, email:
Further details and submission form see

Literature Cited

Hall, M. and Tucker, H. (2004) Tourism and Postcolonialism: contested discourses, identities and representations, London: Routledge.

Call for Images, Contexts: Understanding People in their Social Worlds

Vol. 4, issue 4
Contexts is a new accessible American Sociological Association magazine through which researchers disseminate current research to both an academic and a public audience. Drawing from sociology and related fields, Contexts encourages its readers to interact with their surroundings. It includes feature articles, photo and personal essays, bulletins of the latest findings from social science research, and reviews that are relevant to daily life, ranging from religion and discrimination, to pop culture and foreign crises. Contributors challenge outdated ideas, provoke creative thinking, and stimulate lively debate.
We are seeking images specifically for articles in the fourth issue of Volume 4. This is a special issue on race. Images can be original or archival photographs, or other graphic material such as art work, maps, diagrams, etc. We need images that will capture the reader?s attention and will enhance the reader?s understanding of each written text.
For more information about Contexts, go to

Judith Friedman and Jerry Krase, Image Editors

2nd Emotional Geographies Conference

Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario, Canada 25-27 May 2006

Following the success of the first conference on Emotional Geographies (Lancaster UK, September 2002), we are pleased to announce that Queen's University will be hosting a second international, interdisciplinary event in May 2006.

Speakers to include Liz Bondi, Ed Casey, Avery Gordon, Mike Hepworth, Audrey Kobayashi, Kay Milton and Nigel Thrift.

For further details, including the first call for papers, please visit our website:


Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Is Britain the most surveyed society in the world?

In today's Guardian an article 'Firms tag workers to improve efficiency ' says that: 'An increasing number of workers in warehouses across Britain are being "electronically tagged" by being asked to wear small computers to cut costs and increase the efficient delivery of goods and food to supermarkets. The system gives supermarkets access to the individual's computer so orders can be beamed from the store. The computer can instructs workers where to go to collect goods from shelves also check on whether they are taking unauthorised breaks and work out the shortest time a worker needs to complete a job.

Now trade unionists want safeguards to be introduced to protect privacy and academics are worried that the system could make Britain the most surveyed society in the world. The country already has the largest number of street security cameras.'

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Cosmobilities Network Meeting 2005 in Berlin

The cosmobilities network ( connects European scientists working in the field of mobility research. It is a lively context of intellectual and academic exchange. As an interdisciplinary network it represents state of the art research on different aspects of social, physical, cultural and virtual mobilities.
It fosters mobility research as a key discipline for the modernization of European societies under the conditions of globalization and global complexity.

The cosmobilities network addresses social scientists, planners, engineers, and researchers interested in questions of technology, knowledge and the philosophy of science (STS). For journalists and other experts in questions of mobility it is a source of information and competence. The plurality of its members shapes the network and its activities.

The website is an information platform. It supports scientific exchange and meeting each other in virtual or real space. Creating ‘weak ties’ by communication and beyond national and disciplinary boundaries is the origin for the creativity and agility of the cosmobilities network.

Beyond communication between the members the cosmobilities network continuously organizes common workshops, conferences, publications, and projects. The network stimulates the development of common research projects and publications.
The cosmobilities network is the link to European mobility research.

Two times a year network members come together to discuss new findings and perspectives in a field of growing importance for the modernization of modern societies.

The ‘Cosmobilities Network Meeting 2005’ takes place from October 12 to 14 at the Wissenschaftszentrum für Sozialforschung Berlin (
Part of the meeting is a two day workshop, which is entitled as „Fluidities and Stabilities. New Perspectives in Mobility Research“.
The opening lecture on „Mobility and Global Complexity“ (October 12) will be given by John Urry, Lancaster. Papers come from Bertrand Montulet (Brussels), Gert Schmidt (Erlangen), Laura Watts (Lancaster), Gerlinde Vogl (München), Matthias Bergmann (Essex), Andreas Knie, and Jörg Potthast (Berlin).
For further information, please, contact Weert Canzler (, Vincent Kaufmann ( or Sven Kesselring (
There is a restricted number of places for non-members. In case of interest, please, contact Weert Canzler (

Friday, June 03, 2005

New Communities

This article (Beyond Kiwanis: Internet builds new communities)in USAToday says that "five years after sociologist Robert Putnam documented the decline of community involvement in his book Bowling Alone,a new spirit of civic engagement is flourishing, largely because of 21st-century technology.Cell phones,e-mails, instant text messaging and Blackberries are helping mobile,busy Americans link up with neighbors on their commutes to work,in the middle of the night and on business trips".