ARCHITECTURE: The Digital City. The Netherlands.

From: IN%"[email protected]" "Industrial Design Forum" 5-JAN-1994
To: IN%"[email protected]" "Howard Lawrence"
Subj: Digital City in the Netherlands.

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Date: Wed, 5 Jan 1994 11:37:00 EDT
From: [email protected]
Subject: Digital City in the Netherlands.
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To: Howard Lawrence <[email protected]>
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Amsterdam, Netherlands
3 January 1994


In the Netherlands on the 15th of January 1994 a new city will be
born, a digital city. This digital city can be visited by computer
and modem, and is connected to the worldwide computer network
called Internet.

The Digital City is an initiative of Cultural Center The Balie
and Hacktic Netwerk and is supported by the city of Amsterdam.
The aim of the Digital City is to investigate the possible
contribution of (data)communication to debates about the future
of the city. The project runs from the 15th of January 1994 till
the end of March and covers the period, in which local elections
will be held in Amsterdam.

The Digital City can be reached on phone number +31-20-6225222
(by modem); access is free, apart from the normal telephone
costs. Internet address: telnet

Public terminals

Visitors can call in by their own computer, but there will also
be a few public terminals in Amsterdam, from where you can reach
the Digital City. These terminals will be placed in the city
hall, the public library, the Amsterdam Medical Centre, De Balie,
the Stedelijk Museum and other locations.


The Digital City explores a new territory for the Netherlands,
while at the same time it is using the knowledge and experience
which have been gathered in the United States during the past ten
years. At the present moment there are some 15 million users of
the Internet, among which most Dutch universities. The Digital
City is constructed along the lines of the so-called 'Freenet-
systems' that exist in the U.S. These are free information servi-
ces, which give citizens access to various networkfacilities.
The Amsterdam city hall 'on line'

The Amsterdam city hall will be part of the network. Administra-
tive information of the city council will be accessible in the
Digital City. Various members of the city council and other
political representatives will participate in the discussions
which will take place in the Digital City. In the Digital City
all parties will have their own offices, from where they can
distribute their election programmes, positions on current issues
and other information in digital form.

Participation in electronic discussions

In the Digital City the visitor can also join discussiongroups,
apart from looking through digital archives. Discussions will be
held about Schiphol (the Amsterdam airport), cultural issues,
building and breaking in the city, the elections, income poli-
tics, etc.

Exploring the Internet
Visitors can explore the Internet. Whether you are interested in
libraries in Japan or in Finland, or in paying a visit to the
White House, or in the latest NASA-information: you just have to
hit a few keys on your computer and you can travel around the world.

Visitors can become builders

The Digital City offers organisations and individuals the oppor-
tunity to develop new territories. The citizens can react, bring
in new ideas and propose changes. The Digital City will partly be
built in cooperation with its residents and visitors.

Information brochure

In the second week of January 1994 an extensive information
brochure will appear. Apart from that there will be a Dutch
manual for the Digital City and a 'helpdesk' where you can ask
questions during the project.

Other activities / Smart TV

Various activities will take place in the orbit of the project.
Smart TV will broadcast four programmes on the local television
channel of Salto (on the 15th of January, the 5th and the 26th of
February and the 26th of March 1994), which will deal with the
developments surrounding the new information technologies.
On the 26th of March 1994 a symposium will be held in De Balie.


The Digital City was made possible by (among others) the city of
Amsterdam, the NLnet Foundation, Tornado Modems and Dataman.

Technical data

The Digital City will be run at Hacktic Netwerk on a Solair 10/30
with 4.8 GB of diskvolume. 12 Tornado HighSpeed modems are
connected to it through a terminalserver. The Solair is running
Solaris 1.1 Unix with FreeNet software on it. A Gopher-client is
used for the connection with the Internet, which is made possible
by the NLnet Foundation. The modems are lent out for the period
of the project by Tornado.

Persons to contact

For additional information you can contact:
Marleen Stikker: [email protected]
Rop Gonggrijp: [email protected]
Felipe Rodriquez: [email protected]


The Digital City
c/o De Balie
Kleine-Gartmanplantsoen 10
NL 1017 RR Amsterdam
Phone: +31-20-6233673
Fax: +31-20-6384489
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