Points of View is an interactive mobile walking tour that allows participants to explore New York City in an intimate way. Users will listen to stories that New Yorkers have left around the city and will also be able to leave their own personal perspectives throughout the city’s landscape.
Can an exploration of multiple perspectives help us to develop a better understanding of our past, present and future?
How It Works
I am starting out with a collection of stories of different people’s experiences in the city. Each story occurs in a specific place in the city and I am tagging each audio file to that specific location. The user will be prompted to visit a nearby location on the map. The audio from these different stories will be activated when the user steps into the specified location. The user can also choose to record their own story in a location of their choosing.
I was inspired by a podcast on NPR about the changes in Texas’s history textbooks that present history from a particularly whitewashed version of American History. In the podcast, a Texas history teacher explained that her approach to teaching with these new books was to encourage students to examine history from many angles instead of from one textbook. So, I’d like to create a people’s history of New York City that the average person could add their own perspective to.
The goal of this project is to encourage people to see their everyday environment in a more playful and explorative way and forge a sense of connection with the other people that share that space. I’d also like this to be an archive of personal histories of New Yorkers.
Physical Relationships: I want to use technology to encourage a relationship to our physical environment
Participating in History: I want users to participate in the writing of history, rather than being passive recipients of someone else’s story
Intimacy of Sound: I want to use sound and spoken word to evoke feelings of connection and intimacy
I’m also interested in exploring some of the following ideas:
Solastalgia: People feel distressed when they experience changes in their home’s physical environment. New York City is constantly changing and it’s hard to always feel a part of the city.
Experience of Space: We also live in digital spaces and I want to bring people back to relating to physical spaces
Historiography: Historiography is the approach to studying and understanding genres of history. I want people to participate in writing history, rather than being passive recipients of someone else’s story