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Hello. I have two questions for the community.


Hello everyone,

Last Friday, I attended a very interesting lecture by Todd Prenser, who runs the Hypercities project at UCLA.  (

He mostly introduced the project to the audience (what it did, how it did it, who did it) and explained how to navigate it (which is not always easy).

I assume everyone in attendance knew about Hypercities, and everyone was equally very interested in how to export its adopted model of layering information in space and time into other fields. For example, could we create a similar 3D mapping of books (with layers of different editions, commentaries, also including author’s voices, photographs..)?

As someone working on a cultural history of water in the city of Milan, Italy, I am mostly interested in the type of mapping Hypercities is currently doing, but does anyone here know of a 3D mapping of books like the one described above?

I think Hypercities was once trying to collaborate with Google at one point, but the plan fell through.

Making books and literature visual and also interactive in this way would likely increase students’ interest in the humanities. (I am thinking of undergraduates)  

Also, thinking as an instructor of Italian, being able to superimpose a translation into English or a linear translation in current Italian over a medieval text in Italian would facilitate an American student’s comprehension of the original text.

What are your opinions on this? Do you know of anyone or any institution that is trying to implement something like this in Second-Language Literature courses?

Thanks to all. It’s good to be part of this community.





1 comment


Hi Serena! Your work sounds intriguing, and your interests sound absolutely fascinating. Regarding 3D mapping of books, I believe I saw a project similar to that while visiting Columbia a few months ago, but I'll have to ask some student friends to confirm that it exists there. Either way, I'm likewise thrilled by the potential of 3D mapped books to revolutionize language education through superimposition. If my memory is indeed failing me and the project does not exist at Columbia, I don't see why we could not start such an endeavor -- either at your school or mine (or elsewhere). I can say atleast for my part that the funding is here, so, in addition to investigating at Columbia, I'll look into it here in Washington, D.C. as well.

Great blog!