Vitorio Benedetti
Interaction Design
+46 76 805 11 51

Description Inspiration Method Final Design

Mapping Experiences discusses in a broad way how new locative media technologies impact the process of map making and digital location services in general, concluding with the Walkabout service concept. Walkabout aims at helping citizens to start, or re-start, a romantic relationship with the city they live in. By detecting and reliving experiences, the sensation of being in a place for the first time is regained. The city, seen from other people’s eyes becomes more interesting and alive.

There is a world of stories and information that we cannot immediately see in the space all around us. The great potential of the mobile web is to reveal this hidden world to us. This way, the mobile web will become the delivery mechanism for a new generation of location-aware applications. Geo-specific information will, and is already, enabling real connections between the digital world and the physical one. Mapping Experiences uses the virtual world to stimulate interactions with the real one.

The project research phase took an anthropological approach to understand what is an experience, how people interact with space now and in the past, and how these interactions are expressed. Cartography experts helped me understand what a map is today. By combining theoretical input with user studies, it was possible to understand usage trends and propose an alternative direction to current locative media services that concentrate in finding venues and getting people from point A to point B.

Personal stories from the inhabitants of Umeå formed the basis for the creation of the Walkabout service. This service runs on mobile devices equipped with both a GPS and internet connection, and detects geo-located experiences or stories in the virtual world, revealing them to users as they browse the streets of the city. It also allows them to add new experiences at any time. Walkabout aims at revealing the little stories that color the street life, in other words everything between point A and point B.

In collaboration with

Mapping Experiences