New Babylon for Cyber Hobos

  • Chenglong Zhao, M.Arch.II 2015
  • Hometown Hebei, China
  • Class ARCH 5116/8913 Option Studio (spring 2015)
  • Instructor John Zissovici
    Andrew Lucia

Built upon the narrative of Constant's New Babylon (by Mark Wigley) an alternative urban framework that features the creative potential of mass participation, the New Babylon for Cyber-Hobos investigates the potential of the marriage between technical image and physical terrain as a new way to experience the city. Started from the misplaced texture of façade of World Trade Center towers in Google Earth, the hidden digital world is reveled. From a 3D-scanned Lower Manhattan Google earth model, an upside-down digital Manhattan is created as a communication system for the Cyber-Hobos to mark the attributes of their territory. Through this system, the Cyber-Hobos can store and exchange data about a place by marking it with the hobo signs. Texture mapping is the key to understand the New Babylon, the texture mapping of the digital Manhattan is extracted and unrolled to provide a guide for Cyber Hobos to navigate around the city.