• Visions

last modified August 13, 2013 by tomlowenhaupt

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What impact will the .nyc TLD have on the city? Here are snapshots of city life 2, 5, and 10 years after .nyc's introduction.


Happy Birthday to you...

    Hoping for a 2013 'birth' of the .nyc TLD...

 

 

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Ten already, wow!

 

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When one projects the impact of a new product or service, estimates can be wildly off. In developing infrastructure, future uses can be impossible to imagine. For example, when the Commissioners' Plan of 1811 establishing Manhattan's street grid, the use of the streets for automobiles, trucks, and buses, was quite unimagined. But good planning has enabled that 200 year old plan to serve a variety of functions - even a subway running beneath the grid.

The below visions are all based on the development of the .nyc TLD as a public interest resource via the Community Plan. We're considering a separate page based on visions of what might result from .nyc being developed under a Standard Plan, with a working title of Vampire Nightmares from the Lower Depths of a Raunchy and ever so Putrid Hell.

But Visions here look on the positive side. Join us in their creation. Review the wiki, your desires, and your imagination. Then reach way down, or out, and post your vision of city life as enhanced by a TLD in 5 of 10 years. Or take a Jules Verne leap and imagine our city after the singularity. New Borg City

(If you don't have an edit account yet, create one.)

+ 2 Years

It's 2015 and a family visiting from Berlin is in Times Square, gets hungry and decides to experience a slice of New York's renowned pizza. They turn to their cell, say "pizza" and a list from a google-like service flashes several choices onto the screen. But as they're discussing it, the wise mom says "Wait, isn't New York an iCity like back home?" And with that possibility in mind they say "pizza.nyc" and onto their screen pops a most excellent visitor and resident moderated portal about pizza. It's got:

  • a map of pizza places in their immediate area
  • an alpha list searchable by distance, reviews, and price
  • adds and coupons on a sidebar
  • restaurant reviews from the public
  • and much more

"This is great." says the dad. The mom asks, "Is it available in German?" and with a click dad says "Ja." And shortly they’re off for a delightful lunch thanks to New York having adopted the iCity model. (More on the pizza.nyc portal.)

+ 5 Years

The Global City

Jorge is walking east on 44th Street with his uncle Amadeu who is visiting from Barcelona. They've known of one another from family discussions but had only met 10 minutes earlier in front of the Algonquin Hotel. Jorge is 23 and visiting New York City for the first time since a high school trip. Amadeu was last in the city for a conference in the early 1990's. Neither is familiar with the city and Jorge is somewhat ill at ease as he lives in a Columbus, Ohio suburb and finds the big city totally intimidating. Amadeu senses this and assures Jorge that New York City uses the same cyber model as Barcelona, so getting around should be a cinch. Jorge looks to Amadeu with a puzzled look and offers a polite "Pardon?"

Amadeu explains that both cities signed on to something called the Paris Understanding and created standards for naming both physical and digital resources and presenting them to the world. Amadeu, realizing that a more detailed explanation would take some time, pushed on asking, "So what's the name of the restaurant you've wanted to go to?" "Fargo" shot back Jorge. Amadeu spoke Fargo and showed Jorge the resulting screen with the picture of the restaurant and a map next to it. Jorge looked and said "Yes, that's it." And off shot Amadeu saying "Follow me."

Joanie, the Precocious 

Standing just inside the Broadway entrance to Macy's, Joanie waited with one eye on the men's room door that her dad had disappeared into a minute earlier. But much of her attention drifted to a few adults next to her who were engaged in a lively discussion about where to take lunch. Going into 4th grade at P.S. 127 in the Fall, she could not fathom the basis for the lively and ill informed discussion. Here were these grownups going on and on about the type and location of restaurants that might be available to them - where were they, were they nearby, were they open, how much, what did they serve...

Joanie listened for a moment longer, then reaching far back into here memory to a second grade lesson by Miss Flarity, looked up at the group, and uttered with surprising aplomb for a soon-to-be 4th grader "Why don't you just go to restaurants.nyc. "That's spelled r-e-s-t-a-u-r-a-n-t-s dot n-y-c" she enunciated character by character with great care. Miss Flarity would have been proud.

I shop at .nyc

When I arrived at Victor's place he was on the floor with some small tools and his new 3D TV in about 30 parts. Next to him was his ancient laptop showing diagrams for its reassembly. He'd been at this for a few days now as evinced by the clutter of chip bags and pizza crusts scattered about. With the big game a few hours away I became leery of the prospect of watching it on Vic's new giant screen.

"Hey Vic." No response. I waited a minute noting that he seemed engrossed with the diagram and getting his 50 inch monitor in working order in time for the Knick's championship game. As I was preparing to ask again in a louder voice, Victor tuned to me with a look of utter frustration. He explained that he'd purchased the TV from an online discount firm, that he learned was located in a former Soviet Republic, and that returning it was not an option, and would I please help him get it working.

I told him that my realm of expertise was not within that which lay before us, but that I'd do my best.

Two hours later, with the only visible progress demarcated by the growing field of empty junk food containers, we gave up and decided to head to the local pub to watch the game. On the way over I explained to Vic why I'd decided to buy most of my stuff from .nyc sites: About how the close collaboration between city government oversight institutions, the merchant class, and increasingly the general public, has most everyone cooperating to improve the city's global reputation as a trusted place to do business on the Net. And how this was turning us into "the" shopping capitol bringing good new jobs our way.

Vic gave a "you gotta be kidding" look and I told him of the increasing numbers of local merchants who were following the digital better business agreement.

As an example, I told him about the faucet I'd ordered on a site I'd found on plumbers.nyc, how it and the merchant failed me, and how I was able to call 311 to find the relevant department overseeing that merchant's operating requirements. Finishing the story with the tale of the apologetic plumber.

JacksonHeights.nyc

Jorge is thrilled and oozing with anticipation. He'd only met Soomi a few hours ago and was doing so well at impressing her with his knowledge about the city. She thought "Is he really a native?"

He'd met her in Times Square a few hours earlier and  ...

The Model City

Based out of the Queens Museum of Art's Panorama exhibition, The Model City is the world's most sophisticated planning tool. Part physical model from the 1964 World's Fair, part virtual city, part city of things, The Model has enabled city planners to imagine developments on a scope and scale never before possible.

Development of The Model began in earnest in 2011 when planners recognized the utility of the "big screen" effect of the Panorama's 9335 square foot 3D city model. Applying the newly emerging techniques from the augmented reality world, the detail that emerged from the City of Things initiative - which provided a name and history of every physical object in the city via NYCwiki.org - professional and citizen planners now test their ideas within a time frame and thoroughness never before possible.

Professional planners prefer accessing The Model in person, with civic groups benefiting from the Augmentation Center at the Museum of the Moving Image, and curious residents preferring the augmented views on their cells.

The Flushing Community

With combined sewers that spew raw sewerage onto our beaches and waterways after virtually every rainfall, and with traditional solutions taking decades and billions of dollars to accomplish, what's to be done?

A number of initiatives are underway that evolved from the Clean Water Act and a federal court order for the city to clean up its waterways. One of the initiatives that seeks to clean the waters and meet the CWA standards is The Flushing Community proposal inspired bu the 2010 Minds in the Gutter competition.

To explain the mechanics of the Flushing Community its developers used the eponymous Flushing Bay as the focus of the effort. For a start, see a Mile High View of Flushing Bay, and note that the large structure at top is LaGuardia Airport.  See the detailed Flushing Community Vision here.

Space Wars

Jimmy's preparing to leave his Jackson Heights apartment for a two to three hour trip to pick up some Cuban Cigars in Jersey City and pings his parking club that he'll be departing in 15 minutes. With it promising to be a beautiful Saturday morning, he also tweets his destination to his buds hoping one might be interested in tagging along. A minute later he gets a "25 minutes - Can you wait?" vibe from Tarik, a fellow JH-East parking club member. Packed and ready to go, Jimmy taps "No". A minute later a second Tarik vibe draws Jimmy's attention, "I've got heavy packages to unload and your space is right in front of my building. It would be really helpful if you'd wait 20 minutes. And since its a Thursday space, I'll bonus you $10." While Jimmy's considering the offer another vibe arrives from club member Gladys, "I'll be waiting." Jimmy ponders the options - wait perhaps 15 extra minutes for $10 or leave now and grab the $1 casual fee from Gladys.

Just then Mitch, an old friend from Greenwich Village, responds to his tweet saying Jimmy should pick him up on the way. Jimmy's not seen Mitch for months and tweets "see you soon". Mitch responds, "Any time after 11." Seeing a time window open Jimmy taps "Accept" to Tarik and txts Gladys that plans have changed and the space will be unavailable... See the full Space Wars Vision here.

The Efficient Sharing City

Ken Jordan's (hopefully) prescient Farewell to Advertising included the following diagrams presenting the "Current" marketing paradigm, i.e., 2011, and the "Buyer's Agent" model with its data banking empowering the buyer.

 Farewell-to-Advertising.jpg

Farewell concluded with...

Once products are connected to people's actual needs, the entire thrust of messages that marketers send would change. No more need for misleading claims. The tenor of advertising would shift to propositions coming from a place of integrity. At the same time, the rationale for wasteful, flashy packaging is eliminated. (You bought a computer to send email, not to revel in the layers of perfectly sculpted plastic shards that you had to tear out of the box to get at it.)  One possible by product of such a system could be that, without society's relentless call to consume, people might realize that they would be happier with less than they currently possess. Why burden yourself with your own vacuum cleaner, lawn mower, coffee grinder, crock pot, electric heating pad, washing machine, or any of the other myriad contraptions that clutter up the average middle-class American apartment? All it takes is a moment of reflection to realize that each is used for an hour or two a week, if that. Why not pool resources with your neighbors, put the best appliances in a hall closet, give the extras away, and replace the broken ones (they always break) with really good ones meant to last, which are worth repairing and which you would be stretched to buy on your own? At the same time, you get to know your neighbors. Less is more.

The .nyc TLD facilitated homophilous connections and the creation of our less is more city.

Whose City? Our City!

Looking back just a few years, it's hard to imagine the vast change we've witnessed, moving from a city of individuals to thoroughly networked city.

Those in the technology field recognized that the availability of technology had vastly out paced the ability of society to put it to fruitful use. And it was the arrival of New York's TLD and the extreme abuses by corporations and government that that forced residents demand civic control over the network's policy decisions. ...to be continued...

+ 10 Years

Even more foolish Visions follow.

.com - The Shrinking TLD

It wasn't until the mid-teens that it became clear that the snake that escaped was about to be corralled. Service delivery problems became the lesser pain to the spam and scam that became the identifier of the overpriced .com TLD. As more trustable TLDs, led by the city-TLDs, began to offer both security and privacy regimes, and as major corporate accounts transitioned to brand and category TLDs, reliability began to be the expectation of Internet transactions.

The financial ruckus first arose from those who'd been sold "premium" names during the .com balloon, paying bulb prices for soon to be worthless domain names...

The .nyc Region ( ~ hello Hoboken.nyc)

The .nyc TLD has been active for a couple of years and the sky is blue over the city: the city is humming on the global front; immigrants continue to flow in from around the world; employment is up; the city's budget is balanced; the schools are educating; and tourism is up.

Across the river, at a Hoboken Merchants Association meeting, some of the members wonder what it will take to benefit from the NYC juggernaut. "How can we get some of those tourists that are flooding the city over here?" Rudy Volcano, the operator of a tony retail store asks. Alfred Alfredo, the operator of Hoboken Global Media, says "Most tourists stay on the city's digital grid, following paths, activities, and locations using those .nyc domain names. How can we use them and get on the grid?"

Rudy explains that he looked into getting the Hoboken.nyc domain name but found that it was reserved. Alfred  asks, "Reserved, what does that mean?" Rudy said he totally agreed, "If we got it, people would think of us as a part of NYC. That's the way to get international tourists over here." 

Johann Opengrowth, the Association's manager said he'd looked into getting the domain name but it required that Hoboken agree to the New York's consumer affairs regulations. Alfred says, "Johann, how about looking into it and presenting something on it at next month's meeting."

And so began The Sixth Borough. (See Regional Consolidation and our dotNeighborhoods initiative and Hoboken.nyc for more.)

Democracy

When the Internet became available to the public in the mid-1990s, prognosticators imagined the Net fostering a more democratic era. But for two decades little changed in the interface between city residents and their government. While democracy waxed globally, change in the city was limited to quadrennial elections, a gross lever of control that amounted to regime change.

In 2010 a youthful cohort from the creative commons, open source, and wikipedian realms began demanding improved access to information and the governance processes. They wanted more varied and frequent access to the levers that operated city government. They wanted access to the city information created with their tax dollars.

A parallel development began to take shape in 2011 when traditional civic organizations, led by the Community Service Society, began to advocate for Net access and training to enable and empower all New Yorkers to create information and become active participants in the new era. 

In 2011 Mayor Mike Bloomberg, with his fortune based on high tech, and some claim a surprising latecomer to the .nyc bandwagon, recognized that the impending arrival of the .nyc TLD provided an opportunity to put city residents in closer touch with what previous generations called the civil servants - city employees. His first step was to direct his chief of staff to join the comprehensive study initiated by Connecting.nyc Inc. That study identified the tools and channels needed to enable residents and civic entities to more readily engage, empowering residents and enriching the work of civil servants.

In late 2012 the mayor directed the city's Chief Digital Officer to develop a plan to open channels between the public and government, with a goal of gathering public insight and enabling collaborative development. 

In the ensuing decade, as the old "Community Boards" were transformed into the Civic Engagement Chambers, the city witnessed a startling growth of civic engagement. As the traditional roles of libraries, journalism, education, and planning merged, the Chambers melted government information silos and via transparency laws, facilitated greater public access to the levers of city decision making, creating today's more livable and efficient city.

The core of the Chamber's work remains the secure voter.nyc domain names that enable residents to effectively participate in the governance process. Based on the NYC variant of the Digital Object Architecture, the system enables voters to effectively interject queries and suggestions into the Chamber and have them appraised by fellow residents via the ideologi.org assessment engine.   ...to be continued...

Key .nyc Links