Conversations in Motion

What happens when the boundaries separating motion and design are removed? What is the future of mobility and the city? Experiments in Motion brought together an interdisciplinary design panel for a roundtable discussion that explored the potential for rethinking architecture within the framework of the emerging mobile physical and digital world.
On Designing in Motion

A look at the greatest challenges motion presents to designers today. How does motion influence a design's, or even an entire industry's, identity? What are the adjustments designers have made to build mobility into the foundation of their creations?
On Friction in Motion

How visible should the designer be in the design? When is the user's experience enhanced not by a design's ease and seamlessness, but rather by friction and restraints that are choreographed into that usage?
On Architecture in Motion

What is the designer's role in choreographing the experience of motion? How does the architect establish the relationship of the fixed to the moving, of the human to the built world? How are designers responding to expectations of motion, to continuous change, and to users' desire to shape their own experiences within the architecture of today's physical and digital world?
On Dinner in Motion

By asking not just what is the future of cities, but also, what is the future of motion, Experiments in Motion brought together design and motion to test what new paradigms and solutions could develop. To launch the initiative, Experiments in Motion put this concept into practice, creating a reconfigurable table design that supported moving seats and thus a constantly evolving design and discussion.

Eitan Grinspun

Associate Professor of Computer Science, Columbia University
On Modelling the Geometries of Motion

"How objects move, how materials change shape over time, and the physics of how all of this happens can be most naturally described in terms of geometry... When you shake your head and your hair goes all over the place, or when you pour water from a cup into another cup, all of that motion can be written down in terms of a language called differential geometry."

Michael Sheetz

William R. Kenan Jr. Professor of Biological Sciences, Columbia University
On Cellular Motility

"The membrane is not like that of a balloon in the sense that it can't expand, but instead it has to move from other portions of the cell out there. So there's this process of continual disassembly at the back and reassembly at the front and that enables the cell to worm its way between the cells in the tissue to ultimately reach its goal of finding those bacteria and eating them. It would be like moving a house by taking the back of the house down and moving those components to the front and reassembling them."

Austin Long

Assistant Professor of International and Public Affairs, Columbia University
The Sweet-Spot in Combat Mobility

"Mobility is critical to warfare at all ends of the spectrum, whether you're talking about the mobility of an intercontinental ballistic missile that can travel across the world in 30 minutes and deliver enormous firepower to the steps that have to be taken to enable folks to maneuver at the lowest level."

George Hripcsak

Chair, Department of Biomedical Informatics, Columbia University
"Biomedical informatics is the study and use of information in health care. It draws methods from a number of methodological fields—computer science, applied mathematics, philosophy, physics, statistics, epidemiology, cognitive science, psychology, and a little bit of economics."

Adam McKeown

Associate Professor of History, Columbia University
Rituals of Global Migration

"The smaller you go in scale, to national flows of a few million down to scales of particular individuals, the less the patterns correlate. You are getting impacted first, by national laws, local occupational structures, kinships and relatives, and ultimately down to personality issues. 'I migrated and my brother didn't migrate.' How do you explain that?"

Paul Scolieri

Assistant Professor of Dance
Narrative and Bodily Movement

"The idea that dance is linked to narrative is in some ways relatively new. The earliest dances were part of sacred, magical processes. You dance the world that you want into existence. If you want rain, you dance the rain dance. If you want to win the war, you practice that conquest. But then you have relatively more recent cultures where the idea is that you dance your myth; you dance the narratives. That is the way that you tell the story of where you came from. This is where dance links to migration."

Juliette Spertus

Architect and Curator
Juliette Spertus, curator of Fast Trash: Roosevelt Island's Pneumatic Tubes and the?Future of Cities, on the invisible infrastructure of pneumatic tubes in New York City, waiting to be reactivated.

Abe Burmeister

Founder of Outlier Tailored Performance Clothing
Abe Burmeister, founder of Outlier Tailored Performance clothing, on designing better clothes for urban environments.

Natalie Jeremijenko

Associate Professor of Visual Art, New York University, Director, xDesign Environmental Health Clinic
Natalie Jeremijenko, Associate Professor of Visual Art, New York University, Director, xDesign Environmental Health Clinic on redesigning the airport for an era of sport pilots and wetland appreciation.

Andrew Blum

Author of Tubes: A Journey to the Center of the Internet
Andrew Blum, author of Tubes: A Journey to the Center of the Internet, on how data moves, and what slows it down.

Sean Basinski

Founder and Director of the Street Vendor Project
Sean Basinski, Founder and Director of the Street Vendor Project, on the spectrum of mobility in street vending.

Greg Lindsay

Author of Aerotropolis: The Way We'll Live Next
Greg Lindsay, author of Aerotropolis: The Way We'll Live Next, on the the colonization of time and space by FedEx.