Mon, Feb 28

DSGN 3100: Built environment

Today's objectives

  • Nuclear semiotics
  • Semiotics of the built environment
  • Paradigms and syntagms
  • Reading quiz




Nuclear Semiotics

Nuclear Semiotics








Assignment 6

This is not a place of fun

Your task is to create a playground that kids will not want to play in.

Background: Cities often require land developers to provide playgrounds as part of new housing developments. The land developer in this case must comply and build a playground, but doesn't want kids hanging around. The playground you describe must follow the basic rules for playground safety and accessibility. You can review some of these rules here. You can't use obvious impediments such as fences, razor edges, landmines, etc. Nor can you simply post signs that say, for example, "No playing allowed."

You must adhere to the basic formal requirements of a playground, including life safety. The playground must be located in this imaginary subdivision, but you can choose where.

The objective to not to create a playground children can't play in, but rather one they don't want to play in.

Emphasize semiotic aspects - that it, use meaning and signification to dissuade.

You may use images, sketches, words or other means to communicate your concept.

You can find examples of communicating playground designs here, but you do not need to use this style.

Any work not your own must be cited, using the MLA guidelines.

Notes: Typical rhetoric is based on persuading people to do something. What is the rhetoric of dissuading people from doing something?

Think expansively. This not a product design project, it is a communication project, in the broadest possible sense. Meaning is your primary tool. Think about the audiences - children and caregivers. Think beyond playground equipment - think about landscape, context, narrative and all the things that can affect the way people think about a place. What is the code, or vernacular, of playgrounds? And how can you manipulate that vernacular to both communicate "playgroundness" but also dissuade use?

Include a written explanation of your "rhetoric" of playgrounds - the basic rules you observe in other playgrounds and are obeying or violating.

Due: 6PM, Fri, Dec 30. Upload the PDF file to Brightspace.


Late assignment penalties

For this assignment, late submissions will be penalized at 10% of the total mark (that is, if an assignment is graded out of 10, you will lose 1 point per day, starting on the due date.)

A 1-hour grace period after the assignment due time will be given to avoid any technical issues related to internet speed resulting in late assignment penalties.

The best approach, however, is to submit work early.