mapping the city that doesn’t sleep

I’ve lucky; I’ve never really had insomnia.*

But reading this NYTimes blog gave me pause for thought.

Going by the accounts online, it sounds like the worst thing about the condition is the loneliness. The silent hours. The existential terror of a bedroom wall at 4am – its flatness, inertness, infuriating unresponsiveness.

And it made me wonder whether there could be something technological we have that could make it all a bit less painful.

Recently, a Sydney ad agency created a Tweet map of the city – charting out the Twitter hotspots and deadzones by cross-referencing the usage data against a suburban map.

What if such a map were viewable in realtime? Such as, for example, at 4am?

Would it make things a little easier, to endure being wired and wide awake in the small hours, if you knew that somewhere nearby another person was also staring at a wall, softly tweeting their alertness? Would that make things less grim, perhaps? – the sense of a kindred spirit not too far away: also counting sheep, also drinking warm milk, also searching over and over for the cool side of the pillow.

I’ve got a name for it too: Insomnimap.

Question for the insomniacs: would such an app help? Or would it just electrify your awakeness?

Love to hear some thoughts… especially between the hours of 1 and 5am.

*Though I realise that by stating this, I’m possibly jinxing myself.


2 thoughts on “mapping the city that doesn’t sleep

  1. Deb- I didn’t know you were so articulate!

    I love this idea, it especially takes me back to my days desperately trying to get into architecture school- a fascination with mapping people, places, cultures… insomnimap sounds like an amazing app, get on it!

    ❤ Sarabeth

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