For the exhibition Maps of Amsterdam 1866-2000 at the Amsterdam City Archive Waag Society together with Esther Polak have set up the Amsterdam RealTime project.

Every inhabitant of Amsterdam has an invisble map of the city in his head. The way he moves about the city and the choices made in this process are determined by this mental map. Amsterdam RealTime attampts to visualize these mental maps through examining the mobile behaviour of the city's users.

During two months (3 Oct to 1 Dec 2002) all of Amsterdam's residents are invited to be equipped with a tracer-unit. This is a portable device developed by Waag Society which is equipped with GPS: Global Positioning System. Using satellite data the tracer calculates its geographical position. Therse tracers' data are sent in realtime to a central point. By visualizing this data against a black background traces, lines, appear. From these lines a (partial) map of Amsterdam constructs itself. This map does not register streets or blocks of houses, but consists of the sheer movements of real pepole.

When the different types of users draw their lines, it becomes clear to the viewer just how individual the map of amsterdam can be. A cyclist will produce completley different favourite routes than someone driving a car. The means of transport, the location of home, work or other activities together with the mental map of the particular person determine the traces he leaves. This way an everchanging, very recent, and very subjective map of Amsterdam will come about. If you spend (or should we say move) a good amount of time within the 'ring' of the Amsterdam A10 Highway, you can apply here for becoming a testperson during rhe testing and development-stage or for becoming a participant during the time of the exhibition. Participants receive a print of their personal routes through the city, their diary in traces.