Official histories often focus on large locations: monuments, battlefields, government buildings and the homes of the rich and powerful. Unfortunately, our own unique and authentic histories are often lost, submerged under the weight of the authorized versions, the official tales. We believe that it is vitally important to put ‘place’ back into ‘space’ to make visible things that have been hidden, lost, changed or forgotten.
Placed is a multi-disciplinary project between design, digital media, anthropology, sociology, and history. Placed is an interactive historical digital platform that empowers communities by giving people the tools to record and celebrate their past. Placed creates a digitally augmented layer over the physical geography of each city in which it operates and provides a timeline that allows people to view many different historical stories for any location. In essence, Placed eliminates a monopoly on history by those who have the most wealth and power in society and instead gives a voice to the marginalized and forgotten members of communities who have their own stories to tell and share. Placed is a fun and engaging way to help us preserve the past–all our pasts–through digital storytelling to remind communities about the cultural and personal heritage of our shared spaces and places. Also, Placed will provide a low cost, high quality, qualitative and quantitative, source of social and historical data that benevolent organizations can use to make decisions that will benefit their communities. Collecting these many perspectives and histories allows community planners to make more sensitive and conscientious judgments about future development and anticipate issues and problems before they arise.