The new science of neuroaesthetics [...] tells us much about the way pure form is dealt with by the brain. [...] V S Ramachandran, a neuroscientist at the University of California, San Diego, and William Hirstein, a philosopher at Elmhurst College in Illinois, argue that we are innately attuned to recognise things as unified objects – such that we find brushstrokes or architectural features that can be mentally assembled into a coherent whole more beautiful. — aeon.co
Indonesia is preparing cloud-seeding operations in an effort to combat a haze of air pollution blanketing neighbouring Singapore. Pollution levels were "moderate" levels on Tuesday morning, according to the pollution standard index, a day after hitting "unhealthy" levels. The worst affected parts of the island are in the west and closest to Indonesia. The haze has become an annual event in this part of Southeast Asia, as farmers illegally burn forest or plantation areas to clear land. — Al Jazeera America
Scientists have recently discovered deep deposits of a powerful warming gas leaking into the ocean from previously hidden vents just off North America's East Coast, kicking up underwater carbon dioxide levels [...] Most of the vents are located about 1,600 feet down, the perfect spot for the ocean's temperature and water pressure to combine and create an oozing mix of ice and methane gas, a powerful substance with an impact on global warming that's 20 times more damaging than that of [CO2]. — News.Mic
What does a city look like? If you’re walking down the street, perhaps it looks like people and storefronts. Viewed from higher up, patterns begin to emerge: A three-dimensional grid of buildings divided by alleys, streets, and sidewalks, nearly flat in some places and scraping the sky in others. Pull back far enough, and the city starts to look like something else entirely: a cluster of molecules.
At least, that’s what it looks like to Franz-Josef Ulm, an engineering professor [...]. — bostonglobe.com
In a paper he recently published in the International Journal of Modern Physics B, Tao points to two regions of China... that have a similar geographic location as the Midwest—but far fewer tornadoes. The difference, he says, is that China's plains are surrounded by three east-west mountain ranges, which slow down passing winds enough to prevent tornados from forming.
Tao, then, is essentially suggesting we build mountain range-sized walls across Tornado Alley... — motherboard.vice.com
A new technique developed by a Binghamton University physicist and his colleagues will improve the quality of flexible, conductive, transparent glass. (The sort that's needed for Minority Report-style giant computer displays.)[...] Creating a more reliable production process for a-IGZO will save electronics manufacturers money. It could also reduce energy use, as a fully transparent display can take advantage of ambient light and does not require as much backlighting. — ScienceDaily
Advances in technologies such as this one will enable glass to go beyond transparency and become screens, with the potential to radically change architecture and urbanism. A future in which windows, doors, and even walls could stream movies or display art is fast approaching. LED and LCD screens...
MIT Prof. Mark Jarzombek on the notion of primitive, the worldwide evolution of the housing, and the fate of the native populations in the modern environment
When does the architecture begin? How the pit house can explain the global migrations and links between the Navahos and first men in Europe? MIT Professor of the History and Theory of Architecture Mark Jarzombek clarifies the essence of the problem. — serious-science.org
We were participating in a little experiment trying to answer the question, “How does the brain respond to the city?” The headsets were recording second-by-second readings of our brain waves via Bluetooth to an app on the iPod. The resulting gigabyte of data, gathered from about 50 participants, will be aggregated into a visualization to be presented May 13 at Issue Project Room in Brooklyn. It’s part of the Van Alen Institute’s multiyear “Elsewhere: Escape and the Urban Landscape” project. — theatlanticcities.com
Today’s technology is rooted in the work of Sir Isaac Newton. Contemporary physics’ paradox in resolving the difference between magnetism and electricity implies multiple truths and we wonder what drove Newton’s work and what drove Einstein’s? — toskovic.com
I discuss how paradox, uncertainty, and static historical context in physics justifying technology informs the form follows function of material mission of the modernists. How do alternate sciences and cultures inform the relationship between architecture, form, technology, and person?
Well-designed places can promote health, and design professionals can create them. Health depends... on wholesome places, not just for individuals, but across entire communities, and health professionals can recognize and support them.
Accordingly, two worlds need to come together: the world of design, in which architects, planners and their colleagues create places; and the world of health, in which doctors, public-health officials and their colleagues fight injury, illness and disability. — seattletimes.com
Howard Frumkin, dean of University of Washington’s School of Public Health, and Daniel Friedman, Ph.D., architect and former dean of the UW College of Built Environments, discuss the importance of architects and health specialists working together to create healthier spaces.
Pan and several colleagues argue that the underlying force that drives super-linear productivity in cities is the density with which we're able to form social ties. The larger your city, in other words, the more people you’re likely to come into contact with.
"If you think about productivity, it’s all about ideas, information flows, how easily you can access ideas and opportunities," Pan says. "We believe that the interaction mechanism is what drives the productivity of the city." — theatlanticcities.com
After 2,000 years, a long-lost secret behind the creation of one of the world’s most durable man-made creations ever—Roman concrete—has finally been discovered by an international team of scientists, and it may have a significant impact on how we build cities of the future. — businessweek.com
Earlier this year in February, we reported that the architectual team Henning Larsen Architects + COBE + SLA had won the design competition for the European Spallation Source (ESS) in Lund, Sweden—soon to become the world’s largest and most advanced facility for neutron-based research. The architects have now released a video which provides insight on the ESS project, building, and surroundings. — bustler.net
The competition team also includes the engineering partners Buro Happold, NNE Pharmaplan, and Transsolar. Previously: Henning Larsen Architects, COBE and SLA to Design European Spallation Source (ESS)
In 1967, his architectural firm, Warner Burns Toan Lunde of 724 Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, won a contract to advise the Grumman Corporation of Bethpage, N.Y., for what would eventually be Grumman’s bid to construct an orbiting space station. Mr. Toan worked on the project for the next 20 years, until Grumman was bypassed as a prime contractor by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. — cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com
In the international design competition for the European Spallation Source (ESS), in Lund, Sweden the architectual team consisting of Henning Larsen Architects, COBE, and SLA has emerged victoriously. The team also includes the engineering partners Buro Happold, NNE Pharmaplan, and Transsolar. [...] ESS will become the world's largest and most advanced facility for neutron-based research. — bustler.net
The winning proposal beat out tough competition from international design heavy hitters like Foster + Partners, BIG, HOK, or Mecanoo. Update: Henning Larsen Architects Releases New European Spallation Source (ESS) Video
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