Term: Winter 2024
Section: 9
Class Number: 28806
Credits: 3
Required: No
Elective: No
Course Brief

/ ARCH 509

The Internet is Here

In this course, we will examine how the digital makes its mark on physical space in order to better understand the challenges that arise when we try to communicate and connect with one another. Paying attention to the location of networked devices could help us understand whose desires are really being met and what social bonds are kept intact. Once we can recognize traces of the internet in our surroundings, then we may feel empowered to ask other important questions, like “Who is responsible for taking care of this hardware?” or “How does all of this stuff impact the environment?” at which point other actors reveal themselves to be enrolled in the social and ecological projects of the web. Questioning the design of this infrastructure could help us stretch our imaginations to match the transformative potential of computing. This seminar will begin by studying the physical spaces, buildings, and contexts where the internet lives. These include data centers, libraries, corporate campuses, cyber cafes, carrier hotels, undersea cables, and rooftops, among others. Our aim will be to situate the internet and articulate the ways it continually reformats how we live together. After studying the social formations enabled by these spatial technologies, the remainder of the course will be more projective as students are asked to reimagine how the internet entangles us with our surroundings. Lectures, reading discussions, workshops, and multimedia presentations will occur throughout the semester to broaden our perspectives and support our effort


Fri 1:00-4:00pm 2108 A&AB


Cyrus Peñarroyo