Our photo theme this week: Remaking Baitasi. Baitasi is a monument in west-central Beijing, named after the Yuan Dynasty White Stupa Temple. In recent years, it’s also become a site of Beijing Design Week, an annual, city-wide program showcasing leading ideas in urban design. Some background on Baitasi and its recent evolution into a BJDW “core area” here.

Must admit, this one kind of flew over our heads. Tucked away in a non-assuming hutong living room was this guy, flipping a bunch of colorful data points superimposed on a grid map of Beijing. The signs outside called this Beijing Design Week installation/workshop “Smart Community Maze Decryption,” and they also had this fun Baitasi-themed logo:

Poking around online after the fact, we found this description of the program (in Chinese), which is actually called “Citygrid & CityEye”:

This exhibition utilizes the CityGrid sensor, which is located in the historic district of Baitasi, to monitor dynamic data in the community in real time and perceive changes in street behavior and climate. CityEye is a physical examination platform for the city of Beijing. Its functional implementations include industrial restructuring, population easing, public facility optimization, traffic optimization, environmental management, and other important functions. It uses data from multiple sources to build an “urban physical examination” and multi-dimensional visualization evaluation system for Beijing management indicators.

TLDR: better city living through big data.