Underground animals

Rolf Coppens
October 15th 2006


The Animals, made up using tube lines, stations and junctions on the London Underground map. I like these because it makes such a complex system really personal and funny. Watch this Whales friends here.

Share your thoughts and join the technology debate!public: 1


Posted 16/10/2006 – 19:06

So is there another reason –than a decorative / entertaining one– why people tend to see things in schematic reproductions like the above? Do these things help us navigate through our daily lives? Man-made systems are there to help us navigate in the first place, so this project is just adding another layer to that, but it is NOT reducing complexity, because that would require other people to see exactly that animal (or other object – like a toothbrush) in the map to be able to find their own way home.
It is a comment, saying: the man-made system is too schematic for all human beings to connect to. When making a map like this, try and see things through a childs eyes;
or it says: the man-made system is hiding secret messages, like: Preserve endangered species from extinction!;
or it is saying: people should not take man-made cartography too serious, because people are no computers and not everybody is capable of reading out.
You can find it makes a system 'personal', but what makes the scene personal is the recognition of a game Dr. Natural, you, me and other human beings play from time to time: trying to find something you do know in a system or structure you don't know.
What remains, is that this topic suits this website because two subjects are involved: "nature" and "system". But the connection between them is made by fantasy.

Dr Natural
Posted 16/10/2006 – 16:44

Yes. Fascinating that people tend to see things they know in everything they don't know. Its a way of dealing with the strange and the unknown. It's all metaphores we live by.

Posted 16/10/2006 – 13:06

hmmm... the difference is that the sky isn't a man made system. If you don't take God into account ; )
Next Nature is also about dealing with these kind of systems, right?

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