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Along the Lines of the Occupation

Playing at Diminished Reality in East Jerusalem

Fabio Cristiano and Emilio Distretti

Augmented reality enables video game experiences that are increasingly immersive. For its focus on walking and exploration, Niantic’s location-based video game Pokémon Go (PG) has been praised for allowing players to foster their understanding and relationship to surrounding spaces. However, in contexts where space and movement are objects of conflicting narratives and restrictive policies on mobility, playing relies on the creation of partial imaginaries and limits to the exploratory experience. Departing from avant-garde conceptualizations of walking, this article explores the imaginary that PG creates in occupied East Jerusalem. Based on observations collected in various gaming sessions along the Green Line, it analyzes how PG’s virtual representation of Jerusalem legitimizes a status quo of separation and segregation. In so doing, this article argues that, instead of enabling an experience of augmented reality for its users, playing PG in East Jerusalem produces a diminished one.

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Transformation and Continuity in Urban Space

The Smartphone as a Companion to Digital Teaching and Learning Processes in Extracurricular Learning Settings

Julian Zimmermann, Julian Happes and Nadja Bergis

The progressive digitization of society is irreversibly changing education. Specialists in teaching methodologies are having to address questions raised by the digital revolution in schools and develop appropriate training for teachers. This article responds to this revolution by proposing that smartphones be used to support digital teaching and learning processes in extracurricular learning settings. Specifically, it presents digital city tours as potential tools designed to help learners to explore the urban space integral to their living environment, recognize its historical dimension, and work on this dimension by developing digital narratives. The smartphone is understood here as a tool that makes it possible for learners to experience history and that encourages them to develop learning skills.

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No Longer a Phone

The Cellphone as an Enabler of Augmented Reality

Galit Wellner

Today's navigation is different, with no paper map or compass. Instead we use a cellphone that has a built-in GPS. Such a cellphone is also equipped with an embedded camera that can read signs in various languages and barcodes that most humans cannot decipher. Combined, the GPS and the camera participate in the production and exercise of augmented reality, where reality is presented with layers of information which are accessible only through technological mediation. Currently such mediation is enabled by the cellphone, thereby providing novel dimensions to our experience of mobility. Consequently it produces innovative ways of navigation and a new sensation of reality.