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About ‘My air, your air’

In March 2013 my research-project, called ‘My air, your air’ was started and the first data-visualization postcards were sent to Germany, Russia and China.

The project ‘My air, your air ‘ is an exploration about how data of particulate matter values become more tangible and which role storytelling can play to make these data concrete . Further I would like to investigate the influence of air at the human aspect. It’s an exploration about how people worldwide are aware about air quality and which impact it has on daily life. In the coming period you can follow my design process on this site .

Send postcards

In the first instance I choosed for an analog medium to make the data more palpable. For the project ‘My air, your air’ I use the network postcrossing. On first of march I sent the first data-visualization postcard to Germany.

Through postcards I make some data of my living environment visible. On every front of the postcards are the following data:

  • A picture in aerial perspective of the place where I am
  • Sound of location (by placing an qr-code on the card)

Further the postcards contain data that a system continually harvest from the Internet and saves them in the ‘My air, your air’ database:

  • Date and Time
  • The highest value of particulate matter (PM10) of 10-12 measuring stations in Rotterdam*
  • Wind direction and speed
  • Humidity
  • Temperature

*source: Landelijk Meetnet Luchtkwaliteit & Luchtmeetnet DCMR

The back of the postcard is a metaphor for a volume of more than 120 μg/m3 of particulate matter. I fill the back with a data visualization depending on the highest amount of particulate matter of one of the measuring stations. For example I have little space to write on the back with a high particulate matter value and vice versa.

Received postcards

The intention of the postcards I receive is that they tell stories about the perception of our air living space. The following questions can be a common thread for the stories:

  • Are you conscious about the air quality where you live?
  • Do you have the feeling that the air has a good / bad quality where you live?
  • Has it effect on your life?
  • What means clean air for you?
  • Do you think that your city/region has a lot of particulate matter?
  • Are you curious about the air values of your city/region? And do you have the possibility to check the air values of your city/region?