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In visually cataloging the endearing and enigmatic ways in which the built environment takes shape, Best Practices proposes a new way of thinking about neighborhoods, housing developments, streetscapes, and storefronts, not so much as places defined by building codes, dimensions, or geographic features, but as assemblages of ad hoc interventions and incidental ephemera. Drawing on the history of architecture, media theory, cultural anthropology, and urban studies, Best Practices pairs photographic documentation with extensive captions and citations to define a territory within the margins between the sanctioned and unsanctioned, the regulated and unregulated, the tasteful and tacky, the novel and the nonsense. While not necessarily in opposition of those mechanisms, Best Practices asserts that interest, knowledge, and meaning are more often generated on the lines that divide such categories. This book advocates for a more thorough consideration of the unauthorized remodels, slap-dash handiwork, haphazard paint jobs, half-hearted do-it-yourself projects, cracked facades, contradictions, compromises, and coincidences.