Thursday, June 15, 2006

GeoTagging and AR games

I meant to post this before I took off for Maine. Alas, plans...

It may be a helpful design step (as far as envisioning and sharing visions) to use to geolocate pics and descriptions. I've started doing this with the Greenbush game stories here:

Note that it only supports JPEGs, so it may not be useful towards the end of the design phase. But it does support both JPEGs and "comments"--and allows multiple comments per pic, so design conversations can be held.

Anyway, I thought it was worth looking at.

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Right-sized photos

In the interest of parsimony, I have uploaded all of the pda quality photos to an otherwise empty directory here. I gave them names close to those of the titles of the different locations/challenges on the map so that they would be easy to match up.

Two things:
1) We need to change Lorraine Hotel to Hotel Loraine. Minor detail... but still worth noting. Also, I put in two photos, one outside, one inside, pick your favorite or use both.
2) For the Orpheum, the text and challenge are about the stunts done to get attention. I put in several photos of such stunts, just in case we can use them.

My name is Madison Intro

My Name is Madison

My guess is that you arrived in Madison sometime on Wednesday evening? Your flight got in late and you made it to your hotel with just enough time to grab some dinner, maybe a drink, and then is was off to bed.

This morning you awoke hoping you hadn’t missed your alarm only to find that is was still a bit early. The first big decision was then either to go back to bed or grab a cup of coffee from the hotel lobby. You chose to get some coffee and found some time to read the newspaper.

Eventually you made your way to the Monona Terrace, registered for the conference, talked to a few friends, and sat in on a talk or two. A typical beginning for a day such as this.

Now you are standing here with ME, unsure of how to proceed. Maybe you should just go back inside, meet a few more people, and continue to talk about topics that really aren’t so interesting. Or should you escape? If only for a few moments, to explore what else is out there. If you are an adventurous type, I’ve got some things to show you.

Along the way we will be able to talk and get to know each other. There are a few stories that I’d like you to know and some friends you should meet. I’m excited about having you here.

I should tell you a little secret, first. I have a favor to ask. After you meet a friend or I tell you about a place, I’d like you to take a photo, a document of our travels. You have a camera, so feel free to indulge. Be creative and show me something about yourself, I’m interested in learning about you. This is your chance to make a memory of your trip.

I guess we should go then! Welcome to Madison.

Madison's Skyscrapers

John Nolen is considered by many to be the father of urban planning - the idea that a city should plan its growth in order to create an attractive and healthy environment, rather than allowing the city to grow haphazardly according to the assorted plans of a multitude of landowners and real estate developers. In 1908, John Nolen came to Madison to aid the young city's growth. He made many recommendations to the city, one of which suggested that all buildings built near the capitol be shorter than the capitol itself. This would ensure that the capitol would always have a commanding view of the city, and that the majesty of the capitol would always be visible to residents. It took 12 years for a height ordinance limiting buildings around the capitol to 90 feet to pass through the legislature and become a law. There was much resistance, but the law was ultimately upheld by the Wisconsin Supreme Court, becoming the first ruling in the nation that gave cities the power to pass laws to achieve aesthetic objectives. During the 12 years of conflict over the ordinance, three buildings were completed that exceeded the maximum height. The Churchill Building before you was the first.

Take a photo from the highest point you can reach.

The Churchill Building, right next to Grace Episcopal Church.

Photo of the [building formerly known as the] Gay Building

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

The Lorraine Hotel - Past and Present

The ever changing architecture of downtown Madison has allowed for the new and the old to coexist. Contemporary high rise condominiums now stand next to Art Deco buildings from the 1920's. An example of the old becoming new is the Lorraine. Originally Madison's finest hotel, the building has now been renovated into condominiums. Built in 1923, the Lorraine Hotel cost 1.1 million dollars to construct, second only to the State Capitol building. It's eclectic design made it stand out to clients like Charles Lindbergh and John F. Kennedy as they spent time in Madison. MORE

Site - W. Wash

Challenge - ?

Media - Photos of bell hops and facade.

Place of Protest

The turbulence of the 1960's swept through Madison like a violent storm.
It was early in this struggle that the University of Wisconsin became a battleground for ever growing negativity toward the Vietnam War.
While the main issue surfacing Madison dealt with research being done by Dow Chemical Company, a supplier of naplam, currents of social and class struggle soon came to the surface with skirmishes between police and students.
Students gathered and police dispursed with ghastly results, beatings and tear gas.
The protest culminated in the 1970 bombing of a Army Mathematics Research Center at the University, killing a research assistant and shocking the anti-war movements.

David Maraniss wrote, "It was simplistic to say that events were turning because of them; the culture was accepting, rejecting, co-opting, adapting, disapproving, and absorbing them at the same time. But if citizens outside the cauldron of the university were offended by the excesses of young radicals, more of them were also growing anxious about Vietnam and what it was doing to America. And in that sense the chaotic Wisconsin protestors were in the vanguard of a movement that before long would be embraced by millions."

Site - ?

Challenge - Have a peaceful protest

Media - Dow day video or photos of protests

Gaylord Nelson and Earth Day

". . . on April 22, 1970, Earth Day was held, one of the most remarkable happenings in the history of democracy. . . "
-American Heritage Magazine, October 1993

Gaylord Nelson began his public service in 1948 as a state senator in Wisconsin. He was reelected three times, holding his Dane County seat for ten years. In 1958 Nelson was elected as the Governor of Wisconsin. After serving two terms, he was elected to the U.S. Senate, where he served for 18 years.

The following is a article written by Senator Nelson about Earth Day -

"The idea for Earth Day evolved over a period of seven years starting in 1962. For several years, it had been troubling me that the state of our environment was simply a non-issue in the politics of the country. Finally, in November 1962, an idea occurred to me that was, I thought, a virtual cinch to put the environment into the political "limelight" once and for all. The idea was to persuade President Kennedy to give visibility to this issue by going on a national conservation tour. President Kennedey began the tour in September of 1963. For many reasons the tour did not succeed in putting the issue onto the national political agenda. However, it was the germ of the idea that ultimately flowered into Earth Day.
Six years would pass before the idea that became Earth Day occurred to me while on a conservation speaking tour out West in the summer of 1969. At the time, anti-Vietnam War demonstrations, called "teach-ins," had spread to college campuses all across the nation. Suddenly, the idea occurred to me - why not organize a huge grassroots protest over what was happening to our environment?
At a conference in Seattle in September 1969, I announced that in the spring of 1970 there would be a nationwide grassroots demonstration on behalf of the environment and invited everyone to participate. The wire services carried the story from coast to coast. The response was electric. The American people finally had a forum to express its concern about what was happening to the land, rivers, lakes, and air - and they did so with spectacular exuberance."

Site - ?

Challenge - Perform a act that is environmentally sensitive

Photo - Image of Gaylord Nelson

Monday, June 05, 2006

Progressive Politics and Fighting Bob

Robert La Follette developed his fierce opposition to corporate power and political corruption as a young man. Affiliated with the Republican Party for almost his entire career, La Follette embarked on a political path that would take him to Congress, the governorship of Wisconsin, and the U.S. Senate. His support for progressive reforms, rousing oratory, and frequent clashes with party leaders earned him the nickname “Fighting Bob.”
For nearly ten years, La Follette traveled around the state speaking out against the influence of crooked politicians and the powerful lumber barons and railroad interests that dominated his own party. Elected governor in 1900, La Follette pledged to institute his own form of political reform. onage politics. La Follette worked closely with professors from the University of Wisconsin to help the state become “a laboratory of democracy.” By the time he joined the U.S. Senate in 1906, La Follette had become a national figure.

"The fundamental principle of a republic is individual responsibility. The responsibility is personal at the point in our political system where the citizen come in direct contact with the system itself. This is the intial point of all legislation, all administration. In all the activities preliminary to the primary, and in the primary itself, the citizen is an elementary force in government. Here the voter can lay his hand directly upon the shoulder of the public servant and point the way he should go."

Site - ?

Challenge -

Media - photo

Lady of Lake Mendota

Lady of the Lake

On a cold February morning in 1979, residents of Madison awoke to find a new fixture peering above the ice of Lake Mendota. The Statue of Liberty had arrived in Madison courtesy of the Pail and Shovel Party, a student government association at the University of Wisconsin. In an effort to fulfill campaign promises, party organizers Jim Mallon and Leon Varjian had the statue flown in, but a cable snapped causing the copper symbol of freedom to submerge itself in the icy waters. At least that is how the story is told.

Site – View out toward lake Mendota

Challenge -

Media - photo

Gold Star Mothers - Ann Waidelich interview

A discussion of the gold star flower bead on the capitol grounds and Manchester's Department Store

Site - corner of Mifflin and Wisconsin Ave.

Challenge - Remember the Mothers who have lost children to a war

Media - Video and Audio

Eddie Ben Elson - an interview with Doug Moe

Eddie Ben Elson character around Madison - A guy who would mow his lawn nude and sell tickets to a comet that was to land in Lake Monona but never did.

Site - anywhere

Challenge - Do something that is excentric

Media - audio

Saturday, June 03, 2006

Planning of Madison: John Nolen and the City Beautiful

In 1908, John Nolen, a well known city planner, was contracted by several govermental officials for advice in laying out Madison city parks. For the city of Madison , Nolen recommended establishing boundaries for industry, business, government, and residential life, widening streets and planting trees, increasing land given to parks and plazas, and regulating the height and style of buildings near the capitol to highlight its place at the center of a thriving state.

Nolen pioneered the development of professional city planning. His approach blended social, economic, and physical aspects of urban life with the preservation of natural beauty. He felt strongly that “simple recreation in the open air amid beautiful surroundings contributes to physical and moral health, to a saner and happier life,” and his plan for the city of Madison is considered a preeminent example of the urban landscape movement.

The planners of Madison also adhered to the ideas of the City Beautiful Movement. The movement sought to use beauty as a social control device for creating moral and civic virtue among urban populations. Advocates of the movement believed that such beautification could thus provide a harmonious social order that would improve the lives of the inner-city poor.

State Street and the Capitol building grounds are prime examples of these ideas. Mixing lush park areas with broad avenues allows for a connection between rural urban life. Its architecture and form provides way of associating between important ideas. State Street is a prime example with government at one end and the university at the other.

Site - State and Dayton

Challenge -

Media - photo of Nolen

Madison the Idea

Think back one hundred fifty years. The United States was a growing country with vast areas yet unknown. People were moving from industrial centers in the East to places West, seeking a new life and a space to call their own.

Standing where you are now at that moment in the past, only a small cabin would have stood here. This was a resting place on the long trip from the water ways of the Great Lakes to ore laden earth in the Southwest of Wisconsin. Native tribes and white settlers hunted and farmed the area called the Four Lakes Region.

It wasn't until November 28, 1836, that Madison went from being an idea in the mind of James Duane Doty, to being what was to become the capital of Wisconsin. Doty, a politician and pioneer promoter, played a high stakes game of political lobbying to speculate the land and convinced others that the area should become the state capital.

Existing only on paper the city began with the capitol building at its center at a point between Lake Mendota and Lake Monona, on an isthmus. Roads radiated from this point, named after the signers of the Constitution.
From this starting point Madison has grown to what it is today.

Site - King St

Challenge - sell an idea

Media - photo of Doty or early map of Madison

Farmers Market

During the summer months, people congregrate around the Wisconsin State Capitol early on Saturday mornings. They come from places like Blue Mounds, Stoughton, and Mineral Point, bringing products exclusively made in Wisconsin. Tents are erected and signs are hung as the Dane County Farmers' Market begins.

Founded on European ancestors, farmers' markets have sprouted up across the country as a way for communities to support their agriculture and buy fresh, local produce. The Dane County Farmers Market was begun in 1972 by Mayor Bill Dyke to unite the urban and rural cultures, providing a way for city dwellers to reap some of the county's agricultural benefits.

The market is extremely important to the culture of Madison, not only as a way to connect, but as way to socialize. Vendors carry the stories of life in Wisconsin and only need to be asked to share a story. A welcoming face always greets you as meander through the crowds of people.

Site- Capitol Square

Challenge - Find a Wisconsin Made Product

Media - Photo of Market

Entertainment in Madison

In the early 20's downtown Madison had a multitude of spaces for entertainment. There was the Capitol, the Strand, the Majestic, and the Orpheum, not to mention many others. You could take in a movie or go see who the lastest act was coming through town.

The Orpheum, inparticular, had several manifestations in Madison. Originally, on the opposite side of the square, where you are standing now is the site of the new Orpheum. Beginning as a place for vaudevillle acts to show off their talents, the space later exclusively began showing films. The owner of the Orpheum at the time of its construction, William Beecroft, was know for going to great extremes to bring in customers. There was a variety of stunts and competitions that were used to get people in the door.

Presently, the Orpheum is used as a restaurant, theatre, and special event venue. If you go inside, take in the lavish architecture and head downstairs to the old smoking lounge.

Across the street from the Orpheum now reside the Overture Center. Madison premiere entertainment facility, the Center is home to the Madison Symphony, Madison Repretory Theater, and the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art. Designed by Caesar Pelli the structure was built through a donation from the Jerome Frauschi Family. Having just been completed this past spring, the Overture is a the jewel of urban development in downtown Madison.

Site - State St.

Challenge - Create your own stunt to bring in customers

Media - Photos

Dane County Courthouse

Erected in 1885, the Dane County Courthouse was the work of Henry C. Koch, who also built Science Hall at the University of Wisconsin. In the 1950's the City of Madison and Dane County joined forces to build a new municipal building. This photo was taken as a document of the demise of the building. In its place is left a parking garage to supply space for those working and shopping in downtown Madison.

Jairus H. Carpenter - Judge 1885 - 1902

Site - Corner of Fairchild and Main across from parking structure

Challenge - What is lost here?

Media - Photo

Who Built the Wisconsin Mounds

Madison Democrat
March 25, 1906
"From the advent of the whites the problem of the mound builders has been a more intricate one than it was when the scientific world was wrestling with the curious earth structures in Ohio and other older sections of the country. There is a strange individuality in the earthworks of Wisconsin, different from those of other parts, and the most perplexing thing about the problem is whether the builders here were the orginators of the work, or did they attempt to copy the structures of other aboriginal peoples?
There are many mounds about lakes Mendota and Monona, but no systematic effort has been made to survey, plat and preserve them. Two or three are on the unversity grounds and on the hills beyond are many more. "

If you look up into the metal structure of the sculpture nextwhere you are standing, you will see the shapes of these mounds. Amorphous shapes of humans and animals, that L.B. Hatcher has used in this work.

With the settlement of the area, local people were puzzled about the origin of the effigy mounds throughout southern Wisconsin. Theories sprouted like weeds in the popular literature of the day: the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel, forgotten European visitors, inhabitants of Atlantis, and a mythical Lost Race of Americans were all given credit for the mounds between 1820 and 1890. Who had built these earthen sttructures

Further research has defined these areas as burial sites dating between 600 and 900 AD. The dead were place in shallow pits, first covered by prepared surfaces and then the mounds were built as grave markers. Some theories say that the mounds symbolize the spirits of nature with each group being a picture of the native universe. Others say that the mounds associate to clans with connections to specific animals.

Site - Top of State St. in the fabric of the public sculpture

Challenge - to create a effigy mound of their own.

Media - Photo