ecosXchange is planted as a virtual resident in a living context, a piece of evolving software. ecosXchange grows, lives, engages in a dialogue with, and evolves its life with other residents. The new resident as a subject is a micro-cellular entity whose programme consists of different operating elements - similar to the way that computer programmes apply themselves to virtual environments. The programme applies itself in 3 modules:

Currency Producer
this creates the currency i.e. underwrites the value of the currency and the amount to be put into circulation. The resources that reduce ecological footprint have actual economic value drawn out of the economic savings made. This VALUE is released as 'shares' or points equitably within the community but tradable only for services and goods that further the aims of ecosXchange through reduction of collective ecological footprint. ecosXchange targets the hidden service areas of the Unité d'Habitation and creates new collective services - rain water collecting, communal laundry, car sharing - and renewable energy resources (wind generators, solar panels etc) whilst linking them into daily routines of 'regular' work and leisure.

Currency Circulator
a software circulates the share value created by the producer. The circulation is the means of linking segregated social processes.
The medium of circulation would be cell phones and internet drawing on databases assigned to each apartment cell. The software would be developed through consultation with residents and economists: the circulation is critical as a part of the story of its host community. ecosXchange (as a virtual resident) communicates with fellow residents through the software's 'persona' and name (it may be a common name). The dialogue and narrative threads the circulation generates also produce the new generations of participation and exchange by tying the processes irreversibly into the social life of a community.

Currency Node
this is a social resource, a new kind of 'bank' where communication facilities and resources to monitor ecosXchange combine with the new complementary forms of exchange. Its facilities combine parallel programmes such as ongoing Open Source training for the residents along with an accessible focus for social and environmental activities. Residents can access databases on their ecological footprint and optimise their participation in accordance with their individual work schedules. The node connects the cell unit of each apartment to the greater context of the Unité's ecology. It fosters a culture of complementary exchange based on the integration of digital technology and ecology developing prototypes transferable to other hi-density contexts.

Maison Radieuse


November 2006