Towards the BCA-N

BCA-Navigator: a Classification System

The pile BCA-I’s, with strips indicating each and every one a single border experience is growing. Yes, the purpose of the project is to do justice to borders on maps but by focussing on the BCA-I and its performativity while undertaking a BCA, the quality of a BCA-I after usage is neglected. Each and one single strip contains the experience of a BCA documented precisely and intimately. So, the BCA-I’s become a collection of documented and localised experiences of how a border is perceived. But there are so many, and they are so diverse! From a train that is mapped to signalisation to pastries in a bakery and much more. How to classify, order and reflect on all these valuable and vulnerable strips?

The overall quality of the single strips still related to the actual location of the BCA (first part of the BCA-I) appears to be sufficiently high to exist independently of the other BCA guidelines. It is even starting to become possible and interesting to lay different strips, border crossers and locations side by side and compare experiences. Admittedly, it remains a hassle not to get lost in all the singular strips and BCA-I’s. There must be a way to exchange and restructure the captured border experiences. The strips themselves then form the cornerstones in a recomposed map arranged according to a theme or problem. 

However, it remains impossible to separate the strips from the location of the BCA. That is where the difficulty lies in developing a navigation system through the strips. These strips form autonomous cornerstones for thematic maps that enter the debate about borders within border regions, but because it concerns local and intimate knowledge that is situated, they must remain linked to their physical location.

In this context the BCA-Navigator is born. The BCA-N tries to structure and classify the strips through the addition of a filter system according to themes that the strips contain. In doing so it loosens the connection with the border crosser but tries to tight its connection with the location of the BCA. 

The BCA-Navigator’s Purpose

The purpose of the BCA-N is to help find the way in the labyrinth shaped by all the strips on the one hand. On the other, the BCA-N allows the user to outline own routes and walks through all the border experiences. To dare to deviate from the broad paths and take the small single-track paths and learn new things about border regions. 

The classification themes accessible via the filter system are rooted in the fieldwork as they are distilled from the BCA-I. As a result of the BCA-N, border experiences become part of the broader debate within border regions.