Crowdmapping movie

October 2, 2007

The movie of Crowdmapping is now complete and available to view on U-Tube. Here’s the address:


And look out for news of Shaping Systems’ next project, Cloudzapping, coming up in November!


crowdmapping movie

August 14, 2007



July 30, 2007

th_dscf1889.jpgth_dscf1947.jpgth_dscf1825.jpgth_dscf1949.jpgth_dscf1979.jpgth_dscf1837.jpgth_dscf2028.jpgAt Urbis Manchester on Saturday and Sunday, Shaping Systems Corporation launched their first public experiment, Crowdmapping. The response, and the weather, were both great! Look out for a full report with pictures, soon.

blue plaques of stockport

May 24, 2007

Picking up the local council freezine this morning Shaping notices the sites voted by residents for more blue plaques to be nailed up. Favourite sites include Strawberry Studios (up for sale last time Shaping walked past), Stockport County football ground, Stockport Armoury, one to commemorate a man who died on the Titanic, and one to remind people of another man who co-founded MG motors. The Bulls Head pub also gets a nomination: one Shaping likes, for Shaping went in there recently to catch any remains of the radical vibe that once must have infected the place, when advocates of reform spoke to the crowds from the upper windows of the hostelry in the early 1800s. Among the crowds, Shaping likes to imagine William Dugdale mingling – a publisher born on Middle Hillgate, who went to London for the first time in 1819, to swap ideas with republicans. Dugdale published many radical tracts and pamphlets, including the wonderfully titled Cast Iron Parsons – written by his friend Robert Wedderburn, the son of a West Indian slave, who ran his own radical chapel in Soho and argued in that book that if machines were going to deprive weavers of their jobs, why not go the whole hog and develop machines to replace the clergy? Robot priests, in other words.

But Dugdale’s reputation rests on the erotic literature he also published, believing that revolution was nothing without sexual liberty. By the 1850s erotic books were pretty much all he published, and the authorities  wanted to clamp down on him, so the Obscene Publications Act was drawn up with Dugdale specifically in mind. He was the first person to be prosecuted under the act and died in prison as a result. Doubtless Dugdale was a crafty and at times desperate man (he took out a knife during his trial and threatened the representative from the Society for the Suppression of Vice, who’d informed on him, before threatening to turn the knife on himself) – but he has a place in publishing history and lived through momentous, riotous times. William Dugdale, born in Stockport in 1800, died in Clerkenwell House of Correction, 1868, the first person to be prosecuted under the Obscene Publications Act – that’s the wording on the blue plaque the Shaping would put up, somewhere on Middle Hillgate, just around the corner from Strawberry Studios.

Hello world!

May 23, 2007

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