China is speeding up efforts to design and build a manned deep-sea platform to help it hunt for minerals in the South China Sea, one that may also serve a military purpose in the disputed waters.
Such an oceanic “space station” would be located as much as 3,000 meters (9,800 feet) below the surface, according to a recent Science Ministry presentation viewed by Bloomberg. — Bloomberg
For more news from the South China Sea, check out these links:China is busy building islands in the South China SeaNew satellite images show progress in China's island-building projectChina plans to build a fleet of floating nuclear power plants
The National Security Agency is researching opportunities to collect foreign intelligence — including the possibility of exploiting internet-connected biomedical devices like pacemakers, according to a senior official.
When asked if the entire scope of the Internet of Things — billions of interconnected devices — would be “a security nightmare or a signals intelligence bonanza,” [Richard Ledgett, the NSA’s deputy director] replied, “Both.” — the Intercept
For more on the world of the Internet of Things, check out these links:Don't get smart with me: reassessing the "Internet of Things" in the homeEnlisting the Internet of Things against California's historic droughtMap Plots the World's Internet DevicesTraffic Lights are Easy...
Scientists think they have found a smart way to constrain carbon dioxide emissions - just turn them to stone.
The researchers report an experiment in Iceland where they have pumped CO2 and water underground into volcanic rock.
Reactions with the minerals in the deep basalts convert the carbon dioxide to a stable, immobile chalky solid.
Even more encouraging, the team writes in Science magazine, is the speed at which this process occurs: on the order of months. — BBC
It feels rare to hear good news from the climate front these days. Here's some more:Copenhagen divests from fossil fuelsArchitect turned sea-flooding specialist keeps Panama City afloatSan Francisco to mandate solar panels for new constructionsThe scientists trying to harness the power of waves
"For us it's a prototype. For us, a prototype means it will have another life,”
“Right now, our summer house operates at a scale of something maybe like furniture or something like a small building, but a prototype is something that has a resonance, it's something that lives beyond its four months here, that will occur on a different scale, in a different place.” — Archinect
Barkow Leibinger's Summer House is constructed with four structural bands made from plywood and timber. The piece is grounded by a bench, then strengthened by three central curves with a double layered free flowing cantilevered roof. The duo known for their research-led process and playful...
Architects Michael Fox (FoxLin) and Miles Kemp (Variate Labs and Series Design/Build) put together the first version of Interactive Architecture in 2009, as a "process-oriented guide" to creating spaces that, with the help of emerging technologies, could interact with inhabitants in a variety of...
Copenhagen has become the first city in the world to attempt to monetize its, and others’, data through a city data market.
Traffic snarl-ups, home break-ins, whether it rained or snowed, and how much electricity the city dwellers use each day is among the data to be traded for cash, city officials announced. Interestingly, the city, which is partnering with Hitachi on the project, also wants to incorporate others’ data. — Network World
"Not all data will have a price tag—some of it will be free, but it will be anonymized anyway."Relatedly, in a recent conversation with Joseph Grima, co-founder of Space Caviar, the architect suggested, "...the home is becoming a factory of data to the point that one could pay one's rent through...
The growing interest in blockchain has morphed its concept into something new. Before, the blockchain was simply the spine of the bitcoin network, but today the technology is being used on a burgeoning list of distributed ledgers with varying degrees of openness, security and complexity.
Ethereum, a public blockchain platform created by Russo-Canadian programmer Vitalik Buterin...proposes to do away with middlemen everywhere, not just in finance. — Wired
"Ethereum is a blockchain on steroids designed for more than trading cryptocurrency units or ‘coloured’ assets: developers can use it to build programs that interact with the world based on public rules enshrined in so-called smart contracts."Some architects are already working on utilizing...
Hackers may be pickin’ up good vibrations from your phone. All the better to surveil you with, my dear.
Researchers at the Electrical and Computer Engineering school of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign discovered that the vibration motor in your devices can operate like a microphone, according to the researchers’ paper. That means, if a hacker rewires your vibration motor (which TechCrunch reported could be executed “in a minute or two”), they can listen to what you’re saying. — Medium
In related news:University of Calgary pays $16K to recover data held hostage by ransomware attackersNYPD admits to using "Stringrays," military tech that sweeps up cell dataWelcome to the Hudson Yards, c. 2019: the world's most ambitious "smart city" experimentIf houses had airplane modes: an...
So a lot of us own or lease cars...But when the talk turns to autonomous cars – and it always does – I sigh. Our overcrowded highways really could use a break from human stupidity, and that human factor is behind nearly all of the fatalities and injuries and property damage we see strewn across our roads every day. Get rid of the human behaviour to save the human body! This is where autonomous cars make sense; but not all the world is a crowded, urban highway. — driving.ca
Writer and BLDGBLOG founder Geoff Manaugh's latest book, A Burglar's Guide to the City, isn't just a set of case studies on bank vaults and getaway routes—it's a dialectic for public and private space. It’s definitely the first book I’ve come across classified jointly under...
With the new mayor focusing our attention on smart development and social equality, 2016 will be a banner year for the London Festival of Architecture. Election watchers will be familiar with many of this year’s hot topics: community spaces, social housing, docklands renewal. But considering the theme this year is ‘community’, there will be something for every tribe of Londoner. Out of 300 events, we’ve picked the 10 must-sees. — thespaces.com
See related news here:This week's picks for London architecture and design eventsLondon's Natural History Museum to create outdoor exhibition spacesZaha Hadid's repertoire is a stunning display in Venice's Palazzo Franchetti
Liverpool's Riba North will have conference facilities and a gallery "at its heart", a spokeswoman said.
It will open in August with an exhibition of designs for Liverpool that were never built.
The centre, which will be housed in the Broadway Malyan-designed Mann Island on the city's waterfront, "will offer a magnificent opportunity to display Riba's historic collections, telling hundreds of years of the UK's extraordinary architectural history", Duncan said. — bbc.com
[Airbnb] says it will spend the next several months reviewing how hosts and guests interact on the site and what it could do to ensure users are treated more fairly. [...]
"The bottom line is that the design of platforms dictates the decisions that people make on them. Even if there’s implicit bias, [Airbnb has] an enormous amount of ability to change the extent of discrimination on the platform." — washingtonpost.com
For more on the controversial P2P renting service:Airbnb invests in a blockchain futureYou may have Airbnb to thank for that low hotel rateAirbnb intentionally misconstrued data to "garner good press", according to new reportAirbnb rentals cut deep into San Francisco housing stock, report...
A Labour MP has formally asked the government’s independent spending watchdog to investigate how the trust behind London’s proposed garden bridge has spent almost two-thirds of the government funding for the project before construction has begun.
“We’ve had millions of pounds of public money spent and we have no idea what it’s actually been spent on, and it was spent before it even got full planning permission,” Hoey said. — theguardian.com
Although Khan originally showed reservations, it was revealed last week that he would back the project pertaining to certain conditions. Read more on the controversial project here:Why are Heatherwick's proposals succeeding in New York but tanking in London?Sadiq Khan investigates troublesome...
London-based manufacturer Sto has collaborated with architecture and design practice Sam Jacob Studio to create a oversized replica of an ordinary garden shed by 3D scanning its facade and reproducing it using a product called Verolith. The oversized shed is covered in Verolith panels, a chalky...
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