Smart City Trap Doors

Smart Recycle Bin

A good design in my opinion has to be able to help people and provides what people need. In a way, a design has to be able to increase possibilities for people to live their life easier. My design in this smart city project aims to help people through currently existed technology. The design will provide free clothes for everyone who recycles through the Clothing Vending Machine.

But what if the design has flaws? What if the designer has evil mind? Planting devices to get users data? Or worse, to spy on every move made by users?

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halo.wikia.com

Play as an evil genius designer, these are possibilities that would make the design has more “side effects” than just provide free clothes.

The Clothes Vending Machine Bin gives free clothes for everyone who put 25 plastic bottles into the machine. To be able to get the clothes, users need to register with email, phone number or address. Using these data as start, the machine capable to dig more from users.

EvilDesign

Flaw: #1 Privacy violations

Evil genius design: Track users everyday behaviour.

Put a tracking device in a form of microchip inside the free clothes to get information from users. What are their everyday activities, how far they travel everyday, using what kind of transportation, where do they live. It is also possible to get information about their body conditions such as sweat, body odour, body pH level, or dehydration. These data would be send to stores or consumer goods producers so they can send the user offers of product range base on the behaviour.

Flaw: #2 Privacy violations and new product designs

Evil genius design: Track users consumption behaviour.

Identify what kind of plastic bottles thrown by user, what type of product, what brands, what kind of drinks, and what size of product they prefer. Using these data, stores or consumer goods producers able to predict what kind of product the user like and can send them offers. Using data that consist users consuming behaviour, could also be use to predict a new product design that would attract more people and become successful.

Flaw: #3 Freedom of choice violation

Evil genius design: Force users to use one specific product.

The machine will produce a type of clothes that can only be washed with a specific brand of detergent. Otherwise, the clothes will not be as good the colour will be washed out, or even torn and unusable anymore. The clothes might be free but users have to invest more to keep them good.

Smart city system design has the power to create possibilities for the city to create citizens’ live more convenient. But citizens should be aware of the side effects brought by the system. Moreover, citizens should be aware of evil designers, or even evil corporations that try to control the city and its citizens.

References:

http://www.theguardian.com/cities/gallery/2014/dec/16/moma-sci-fi-designs-future-megacities-in-pictures

http://www.flawsofthesmartcity.com/flawsofthesmartcity_cards_en_v1-1.pdf

http://designandviolence.moma.org/about/

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