Telematic Stroll: Urban Jungle v Heartland

Today, we took it to the streets of Clementi in the West and Punggol, the utmost end of the North-East. I decided to take the stroll in Punggol instead as this urban estate is just a shore away from Johore Bahru, Malaysia.

Urban concept vs Old School Heartlands

Nestled in the quiet and up-and-coming estate of Punggol is Waterway Terrace, a HDB apartment with a not-so-conventional HDB apartment structure. At the foot of the blocks is also a park, filled with exercise-goers amidst the greenery. Furthermore, it is located right across a shopping mall. Hence, many people mistake this building for a condo.

Therefore, my partner Siewhua and I wanted to showcase these contrasts in a growing and new estate, juxtaposed with the old estate Clementi where she lives. Clementi on the other hand, brings out the heartlands with its old-school looking flats and shophouses.

Typical shophouses found around void decks of Clementi estate.

Our Telematic Stroll

We were told to go live for about 15 minutes but we actually went on for about 40 minutes?! We were shocked at how into it we were that we actually didn’t realise the duration.

Particularly, we paid attention to structure, perspectives, lines, shadows, shape during the walk. Also, we tried to pick out common objects and sync our actions.

In the midst of the contrasts, the new and the old, we also managed to capture these similarities amongst the differences that we found particularly interesting.


Lines and shadows 



Indeed why we’re called Green City in Singapore. Trees everywhere, sheltering us along pathways that intertwine.

Common objects

Bikes for rent! You see lots of these oBikes, Ofos or Mobikes wherever you are across the island nowadays

Fences and bars. They seem to appear even more secure in urban landscapes, creating a nice repetition effect.

We happened to walk towards (not into) a lamp post at the same time!

Old school estate vs newer estate braille! Different design, same purpose! #humancentricdesign

Plants and more greenery. No plants were harmed during the process. Just synchronizing our actions,

Mosquito bite – same leg, same area sia

Even the mozzies were in sync. We got bitten on the same leg and spot during the broadcast. Yikes


Bandwidth – Just as Hole-in-space has proven, bandwidth is so so important. Having enough data is in Singapore has been a problem – what we call ‘data deprivation’. Siewhua does have much to spare and this was one thing that we had to tackle. In fact she only left 300MB for the month…. God bless her next bill. So this module……1 AU for 1 GB

Orientation– As many have done it, their screens are side by side. We did notice this but decided to leave it as it is as it’s the imperfection that proves certain points. Basically, I told Siewhua that comparing these two estates were like ‘peering through a pinhole’ or looking into another world through a small window. Yes, just like through a film camera. We see these similarities, big or small that becomes rather uncanny when it takes place in the same moment.

Just like this moment here

Weather – As a site-specific piece that was outdoor, it was either sunny as hell or raining cats and dogs. We were actually quite relieved that we had bright sun and blue skies (although we got a little burnt) as it broke into a torrential rain right after we ended our broadcast. Perhaps clouds were also in-sync that day islandwide for the telematic stroll!

In Summary

To tie it all up, it indeed felt like my partner was right there with me on the telematic stroll although she was half the island away. Amazing how the third space is able to do that. It indeed showed how one can be at two places at the same time, in REAL TIME, with two-way interaction. This is just the start of something and perhaps we could incorporate more stuff into a telematic stroll in the future like buying a drink. I wanted to get LiHo(new age bobba milk tea) while Siewhua gets her good old Teh ping (milk tea SG style) at the ending. But we wouldve badly overran. Maybe next time folks!

Telematic Stroll Video

Randall asked me to go live #telematicstroll

Posted by Val Lay on Saturday, 4 November 2017