Stephen C. Rose
Mar 24, 2015 · 4 min read

See Ramps — Medium

Continuing articulation of Cybercommunities, cities of the future.

We are getting into the very center of the technology that will be required to get the cybercommunity concept launched. But it is hard to believe that the general requirements of such a structure cannot be developed using aspects of technology that are already here. 3D Printing for one. Prefabrication for another. RV construction for another. Modular construction for another.

I have already posited a Matrix, an amazing structure that will not only replace a foundation but also the need for bearing walls. In essence the matrix is the skeleton of the cybercommunity and spaces are sections of modular magic fit together in any desired conformation. The matrix grows with the spaces. Both are easily assembled and easily disassembled.

Now the biggest thing about spaces is the strength of the elements, their lightness, and their capacity to function as what we call floors, walls, ceilings, doors and walkway surfaces. Surfaces is the operative name for these elements. They will have a maximum size that makes them transportable and easy to handle.

Let’s imagine the makings of a part of a city.

Let’s assume that a typical space will be 12' by 12' with a height of 9'.

Sides, tops, bottoms, walks

Taking the above to represent modular components we can assume that a typical space would have 16 6 by 6 surfaces for sides and 8 for top and bottom — 24 in all. These would fit together and would be affixed to the matrix. The matrix would bear the surface. Walks would be as halls are now and would also suggest spaces for storage and facilities.

Imagine several things:

That something like this is doable.

That there could be a single standard for the creation of spaces/

Imagine that the spaces could be thin and made of material that is strong enough to serve as an interior surface which functions the way walls do.

Imagine that assembly of spaces is simply a matter of creating a specific matrix — by adding elements to the basic matrix — and then attaching these surfaces and connecting them.

The actual form and shape of “cities” would be any shape and form imagined, desired, doable within the parameters of the matrix and the components. There is abundant space behind any structures that are on the main place. I can see for a family a cluster of three or four private spaces clustered around a terrace or play area. I can see a similar cluster occupied by single residents who want to have shared semi-private and semi-public space.

My plea here is for standardized elements because I have no illusions. The matrix and the surfaces are not coming out of thin air. They will be expensive to create. The only way that the cost can become reasonable is if the initial models are replicable. When this is the case it could become open source and globally usable.

This is as good a place as any to make a major point regarding space, upending the premises on which we have created the present sprawl.

We have assumed that we need tall buildings to deal with a growing population. Of course there are other obvious reasons for this height-matters approach. But basically this notion is dead wrong. Skyscrapers represent a silly solution to the problems of population.

Other harbingers of sprawl are:

The false notion that an economy must grow incessantly to be prosperous.

The truth is that an economy can be eminently prosperous if it is devoted to the growth of individuals, particularly in the realm of values.

The false notion that population is our problem.

The truth is that our problem is achieving a proper density for the population we have. Imagination clusters of 10,000 persons easily fitting into a square mile as I have indicated. How many of these would it take to cover the entire population of the world? Try this using the 48 contiguous states of the US and you will see the light.

And if you are saying that you have no interest in living in this way, you want 300 acres and a McMansion, be my guest. The proposed plan must be desirable to most but will never please everyone. I am merely pointing out that the population hawks, like deficit hawks, have a simplistic intuition when it comes to getting at the problem.

The refusal to relate density and prosperity.

Density is the key to prosperity. Too much density is a sign of inhumane crowding. To little simply condemns the outliers to the expense of getting to where an income can be made. Naturally the cybercommunity is predicated on basic income, but even without basic income such cities are poised to be profitable. I think of Capri and its 7000+ residents and its plethora of tourists from all over. It is car free. Most of its four square miles are uninhabitable. There there are no skyscrapers. The Island is regarded as a sort of paradise. My experience there is that you will find people about but crowds only in areas that seek them, such as the main Piazza.

We do not need skyscrapers. We do not need suburbs. We do not need commuting. We need a redoing of the world. Car free communities with local governance and a disposition to reduce the obvious sources of harm, by addressing the realities of individuals. Communities based on helpfulness, tolerance and democracy.

This handbook is meant to accompany Planning and Designing a Good Future: What to Strive for and What to Avoid

Stephen C. Rose

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