From buckling sidewalks to potholed thoroughfares to storm drains that can’t handle a little rain, the infrastructure that holds [Los Angeles] together is suffering from years of deferred maintenance. Bringing pipes that deliver water to 3.9 million people up to snuff could cost $4 billion [...] The bill for repaving streets will be almost that much, according to estimates from a city consultant, and patching or replacing cracked sidewalks will require $640 million. — Bloomberg BusinessWeek
A team of researchers from Institute for Advanced Architecture of Catalonia are working on another solution: A swarm of tiny robots that could cover the construction site of the future, quickly and cheaply building greener buildings of any size. [...]
"The robots can work simultaneously while performing different tasks, and having a fixed size they can create objects of virtually any scale, as far as material properties permit” — fastcoexist.com
What if you could earn a degree as quickly or slowly as you can learn, regardless of whether you plodded through 80 hours in a classroom lecture?
That could be the next wave of higher education, as schools come under more pressure to cut costs while proving the value of expensive degrees and competing with the growing number of high-quality free online courses. Call it the decoupling of instruction and testing. — Co.Exist
"Competency-based education" is the radical new initiative where students pay institutions (pending admittance) a flat, per-semester rate to attend whichever college courses they like. Degrees are awarded when a student passes a "competency" test, regardless of how many units they took or how...
Double happiness by Zaha Hadid and Philippe Starck . A house for Russian billionaire and his gf Naomi Campbell. And a Steve Job design directed yacht called Venus. Architects + Architecture + the power of money. "Taking over the galaxy? Naomi Campbell's Russian billionaire...
Affordability, along with a minimalist aesthetic, were the reasons she decided on a prefab house — points on which Mr. Buryk, who had years before remodeled a 100-year-old house in Portland, Ore., wholeheartedly agreed. “I, similar to Zoe, was coming from a place of not wanting to do that again,” he said.
But it wasn’t quite as affordable as they had hoped. The house cost $260,000 to build, from start to finish (the kit itself was $47,000) — nearly $100,000 more than they’d expected. — nytimes.com
The house is constructed from sheets of plywood and frames donated by a local DIY shop. The outside walls are built from stacked bricks while inside, the shredded euros are used to plaster the walls and carpet the floor. It has a double glazed window, a high security front door and a toilet. — BBC News
Zaha Hadid has made the Sunday Times Rich List for the first time, with her personal wealth estimated at £37 million.
Hadid features in the extended list of the UK’s 2,000 wealthiest people, due to be published in full later this month. The threshold for entering the top 1000 is £70 million. — bdonline.co.uk
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