MA1 – Age of You: The Architecture of Streaming Architecture

Me. You. Us. Them. We are all part of the game … a game that is dominated by hyperconnectivity and the ubiquitous internet, where streaming data has become the most  mundane activity embedded in the fabric of daily life. At every opportunity, whether at home on our beloved bed, on the train, while grocery shopping, or even during public events, we are persistently streaming data to and from our phones, smartwatches, laptops, or similar devices. Our attention is constantly split between our physical presence, i.e. the feeling of being in a tangible place, and the distant happenings of E-Sports events on Twitch, live podcasts on Clubhouse or the latest exciting series on Netflix. Tele-audiovision (tele = far, from a distance) has fundamentally changed our daily lives, the way we interact and communicate with the world around us, and thus the way we live in general. Of course, this is nothing new and we know it all! 

But … 

… What if we imagine scenarios that go beyond tele-audiovision? 

… What if we imagine a daily life where tele-audiovision is replaced by embodied tele-presence?

… What if we streamed not two-dimensional audiovisual data to our screen-equipped devices, but started to stream actual three-dimensional spaces that can be spontaneously inhabited at every opportunity?

… What would that mean for our understanding of space and architecture? And how would that change our daily lives?

AGE OF YOU is a design studio that explores media assemblages, the spaces of world wide web and its architecture, to understand how it changes what we are and how we live. Precisely we will look closely at the phenomenon of streaming culture and its architectural understandings and formulations. This will include a huge variety of disparate agents, such as hosts, crowds, spaces, infrastructures, mechanisms, protocols, rituals, cults and data, to name just a few of them. We will also put those agents in relation to each other to see how they perform as a network determined by a high count of parameters, such as connectivity, transparency, ubiquity, performativity, empathy, irony, fidelity, accessibility, … and so on. The aim of the design studio is to provide students with the vocabulary of contemporary digital culture so they can adequately  meet the challenges of being a literate architect of today (and tomorrow).