If Mr. Ratti’s projections are correct, and self-driving cars can radically reduce traffic without cannibalizing existing mass transit—the hypotheticals pile up—it is possible that self-driving cars will make many cities livable in a way they aren’t now. Imagine if every U.S. city had a hybrid public-private mass-transit system on par with those in New York City or Washington, D.C., comprised entirely of self-driving vehicles. — wsj.com
Related stories in the Archinect news:Would self-driving cars be useful to people living outside urban cores?The "algorithmic dreams" of driverless cars, and how they might affect real-world urban designHow prepared are American cities for the new reality of self-driving cars?
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...
Hyper-Reality is a concept film by Keiichi Matsuda. It presents a provocative and kaleidoscopic new vision of the future, where physical and virtual realities have merged, and the city is saturated in media. — hyper-reality.co
"Our physical and virtual realities are becoming increasingly intertwined. Technologies such as VR, augmented reality, wearables, and the internet of things are pointing to a world where technology will envelop every aspect of our lives. It will be the glue between every interaction and...
Some people think VR is a second class reality. I am not sure of that — aeon.com
If the founders of a new face recognition app get their way, anonymity in public could soon be a thing of the past. FindFace, launched two months ago and currently taking Russia by storm, allows users to photograph people in a crowd and work out their identities, with 70% reliability.
It works by comparing photographs to profile pictures on Vkontakte, a social network popular in Russia and the former Soviet Union, with more than 200 million accounts. — the Guardian
"In future, the designers imagine a world where people walking past you on the street could find your social network profile by sneaking a photograph of you, and shops, advertisers and the police could pick your face out of crowds and track you down via social networks."For related content:France...
Google will introduce its much-anticipated entry into the voice-activated home device market on Wednesday, according to people who spoke on the condition of anonymity.
Named Google Home, the device is a virtual agent that answers simple questions and carries out basic tasks. It is to be announced at Google’s annual developers’ conference in Silicon Valley.
Questions are already arising about privacy, disclosures and the quality of the information being doled out. — New York Times
The project will compete against Amazon's Echo.For more on new forays into smart home technology, check out these links:Mark Zuckerberg's resolution for 2016: build an at-home AI "like Jarvis in Iron Man"A city for the future but devoid of peopleSamsung Acquires SmartThings, A Fast-Growing Home...
"The idea that you can replace the 10 trips with one autonomous car and travel less distance, that’s the biggest misconception," says Fagnant. "You can get rid of vehicles, but not vehicle miles traveled. Without ridesharing, there's an 8 to 10 percent increase in vehicle miles traveled based on simulations we've run in Austin. You’re not replacing trips [..] the vehicle has to bounce between locations, and relocate to where it’s needed. Those in-between miles will create a lot of extra travel." — curbed.com
Related stories in the Archinect news:How prepared are American cities for the new reality of self-driving cars?The U.S. just got $4 billion to spend on self-driving carsMore Americans are becoming "mega-commuters", U.S. Census stats show
When Apple finishes its new $5 billion headquarters in Cupertino, California, the technorati will ooh and ahh over its otherworldly architecture, and Apple will pat itself on the back for yet another example of "innovation." ...But few are aware that Apple’s monumental project is already outdated, mimicking a half-century of stagnant suburban corporate campuses that isolated themselves—by design—from the communities their products were supposed to impact. — Fast Company Design
This fascinating article delves into the soul-sucking thinking behind isolated corporate behemoth design, which essentially captures the employee for the entire day and encourages a detached, "Who cares; I've got mine!" thinking towards maintaining urban infrastructure. Consider this:Connecticut...
This post is brought to you by BQE ArchiOffice. Are you an architect who always had that special entrepreneurial drive? Were you mentored by another successful architect or by a friend or family member who was successful in their own business endeavor and aspired to be like them? Perhaps you were...
Renewable energy like solar and wind is booming across the country as the costs of production have come down. But the sun doesn't always shine, and the wind doesn't blow when we need it to. [...]
A company called SolarReserve may have found a solution: It built a large solar plant in the Nevada desert that can store heat from the sun and generate electricity for up to 10 hours even after sundown. — npr.org
Related stories in the Archinect news:Denver selected to host the 2017 Solar DecathlonA river of solar power: a scheme for the Tijuana riverHow this new gigafactory may popularize residential solar power technology
This post is brought to you by GKD Mediamesh®. GKD Mediamesh® is a woven stainless steel fabric with integrated LEDs that is used to create a transparent digital display. This unique product is the perfect solution when a digital display is needed on a façade, yet the view through windows...
The idea is that perhaps we should be looking at these mentors, at these biological elders. They have figured out how to create a sustainable world. So rather than inventing it from scratch, why don’t we take our cues from them?
Watch the full video here, "brought to you" by none other than Leo DiCaprio:For more information on biomimicry, take a look at some past Archinect articles or visit the documentary website:"Architecture Follows Nature" lecture focuses on biomimicry and collaborative researchHuman organ-mimicking...
A striking circular building at Darling Harbour will house a new City of Sydney library for the area’s existing and incoming residents, following an agreement with Lendlease.
The six storey community and retail centre, designed by Japanese architect Kengo Kuma, will be built by developer Lendlease at Darling Square. — the City of Sydney
The Office of the Mayor of Sydney announced that the Japanese architect Kengo Kuma will design a new multi-use building at Darling Square that will include a two-level library. The developer Lendlease will build the timber-swathed structure.“I am very pleased that the City has reached an...
This post is brought to you by BQE ArchiOffice. Physical paper may have given way to PDFs. Ink pens may have been replaced by stylus pens. What architecture firms don’t have to worry about being replaced or disappearing, however, are documents.From initial engagement contracts to drawings...
The British company developing the uses of a super black, light absorbent material called Vantablack S-VIS is working with leading architects as well as the British artist Anish Kapoor.
The founder and chief technology officer of Surrey NanoSystems, Ben Jensen, says that the company is working with “some large and well respected global architects,” and that the coating is already available for “suitable applications”. He declined to name the architects involved “due to prior agreements”. — theartnewspaper.com
Related stories in the Archinect news:UCL researchers present a new kind of self-cleaning nano-engineered windowThis Nano Membrane Toilet could solve the world's sanitation crisis – and charge our phonesRejoice aesthetes! New incandescent bulbs are now more efficient than LED
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