Organizing Dialogue, Experience and Knowledge for Complex Problem-Solving

Blog of Note: The Serendipity Engine

October 19th, 2011

Image credit: Aleks Krotoski. The creation of the Serendipity Engine. 

 Readers should drop what they are doing right now and check out the collaborative new project by researchers Aleks Krotoski and Kat Jungnickel called "The Serendipity Engine". What is it? In their own words: "The Serendipity Engine is a physical manifestation of theoretical and technological interventions that can be used to enhance serendipity on the World Wide Web. It is a working machine that uses bike parts, flower pots, cake, pulleys, lightbulbs and other concrete objects to articulate the processes that could be translated into digital “solutions” that will re-engineer the potential dystopian social trajectories of current (social) software trends*." The site is in its early stages but already has delivered some heady, intellectual stuff that is well worth a read. In a recent post, for example, they look at the 1958 Guy Debord concept of "Dérive"
In a dérive one or more persons during a certain period drop their relations, their work and leisure activities, and all their other usual motives for movement and action, and let themselves be drawn by the attractions of the terrain and the encounters they find there. Chance is a less important factor in this activity than one might think: from a dérive point of view cities have psychogeographical contours, with constant currents, fixed points and vortexes that strongly discourage entry into or exit from certain zones.But the dérive includes both this letting-go and its necessary contradiction: the domination of psychogeographical variations by the knowledge and calculation of their possibilities. In this latter regard, ecological science, despite the narrow social space to which it limits itself, provides psychogeography with abundant data.
[Bookmark: "The Serendipity Engine"]

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Categories: aleks krotoski, kat jungnickel, serendipity engine

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