The new order was "visually appealing" to the bureaucrats, with housing in one section, work in one section, government in the middle etc. A lot of vast open space made it so spontaneous markets & trading did not occur (due to enforced zoning and excessive sunlight instead of using shade from buildings), leading to a lower quality of life for its inhabitants.
From Ruby Rogues 184 RR
"JESSICA: Alright. So, I am going to echo one of Greg’s picks because it was on my list but for a different reason. ‘Seeing like a State’ is an amazing book. And I think it’s drastically changed the way I look at software, not for the same reason as Greg talked about but because it shows why what we do is hard. ‘Seeing like a State’ talks about all the subtleties of human systems and human interactions at the local context level. It talks about all the improvisation that everyone does on a day-to-day basis and how in real human communities, we’re constantly changing the system to adjust to a slightly different reality, to corner cases we hadn’t seen before but now we have. It’s shifting and it’s not well-defined. And suddenly it makes complete sense that the hardest part of software is figuring out what we want to do. That’s it. It’s a great book."
Maybe I'm a little bit biased because right now I'm reading
James C. Scott's "Seeing Like a State: How Certain Schemes to Improve the Human Condition Have Failed" (http://www.amazon.com/Seeing-Like-State-Condition-Institutio...), which has a couple of chapters against modern, centralized, well-planed architecture that is designed "to look good from a plane" (he gives Brasilia as a negative example). Now, I know these suburbs weren't probably planned by the Government, but the main idea behind their design and planning is the same, i.e. to look good from a geometrical point of view.
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