The one theme that united all participants of the 2012 Urban Age Electric Cities conference was change: engaging with issues of scale, trust and optimisation of technology in urban environments, the event’s format instigated new ideas.
Martin Heidegger’s lecture The question concerning technology was first delivered in Germany in 1953; in it, Heidegger asserts that modern technology transforms humanity into its own standing-reserve, that is, technology asks of nature the unreasonable demand that it supply energy which can be extracted and stored as such. The philosopher argues we must respond by investigating technology in order to prepare us to relate to it, think about it, and imagine it in relation to the city. For Heidegger, while the windmill creates energy in real time, the hydroelectric dam seeks to make it and store it, thus turning the river into an energy resource. This modern technology changes the way we think of nature and each other, turning us into resources. The creation and storage of electrical energy therefore makes the source of the processes that produce this energy — in this case, the Rhine river — appear to be something we can command. The saving power of technology, therefore, lies only with our ability to listen, reflect and witness. The problems of ecological and economic crisis, overcrowding, pollution, ambient noise and light must all be managed.
See on www.domusweb.it