Predictability in Urban Space: Location-based Services for Efficient Spatiality

By Tatjana Todorovic.

Published by Spaces and Flows: An International Journal of Urban and ExtraUrban Studies

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Customized, location-based services envision greater user-control for the “active reconstruction” of urban space. These services are intended not only to ascribe meaning to space, but also to deliver new meaningful spatial experiences for users. From navigation and the “nearest best,” to the predictive recommendations “with rich local content that matters the most to you here and now” (Altman, 2010), these services have evolved into technologies capable of ‘learning’ users’ search and movement histories, to further customize and recommend, and thus impact users’ future preferences. This paper argues that customized services are conveniently promoted as an appropriate personal management tool and a practical support for contemporary requirements, to constantly construct one’s life narrative within a broader discourse of “calculus of risk,” and its “predictable security in the face of an open future” (Beck, 1999). The predominant logic of efficient use of one’s surroundings with an increasing dependence on supporting technologies corrupts assumed personalized notion. Who, in fact, benefits the most from the anticipated efficiency of daily time-space routines? It is precisely through these notions of personalized, custom-based calculations and predictability that the “art of government” is employing its tactics for a self-regulating system of well-behaved citizens, rather than setting laws to arrange things for a “suitable end” (based on Foucault’s concept of “governmentality,” 1978).

Keywords: Predictability, Location-based Services, Urban Space, Efficient Spatiality

Spaces and Flows: An International Journal of Urban and ExtraUrban Studies, Volume 2, Issue 3, pp.101-114. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 1.856MB).

Tatjana Todorovic

PhD Candidate, Communication and New Media Department, National University, Singapore

Tatjana Todorovic is a PhD candidate in the Communications and New Media Department at the National University of Singapore. Tatjana Todorovic’s current research interests are mobile and location-based technologies as a new way of comprehension and usage of space. In a broader sense, Todorovic is interested in media and technology’s impact on individual and cultural definitions and the apprehension of space, as well as utopian and futuristic visions of cities. Todorovic graduated from the University of Belgrade in Serbia, and the School for History and Theory of Images in the Centre for Contemporary Arts in Belgrade Serbia. Todorovic was co-founder of the Emerging Research Group, RASTER, based in Singapore, and was involved in various project,s such as Cycloglyphs, which was the part of Project Belgrade in Cities, Architecture and Society, La Biennale di Venezia, 10 in 2006; a workshop with DigitGroup, University of the Arts Belgrade; “Metazoa Ludens”, in collaboration with Mixed Reality Lab-NUS Singapore, and many more.