Suburban Utopia

The First Self-Driving City Coach

The bus of the future is here and it is called, indeed, Future Bus. Mercedes-Benz just revealed the first self-driving city coach and took it to the streets of Amsterdam for a test drive. The company envisioned next step for public transportation in the form of semi-autonomous bus technology. With its advanced driving system CityPilot, the Future Bus is designed to navigate urban environments.

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being reminded by Facebook that it's your best friend's birthday
Society of Simulations

What Is Next Nature? #11

Facebook’s mission“to give people the power to share and make the world more open and connected” – seems innocent and noble, but the social network, now deeply integrated in the social fabric, makes us question what it means to be social. We no longer have to remember birthdays and other socially significant events, Facebook kindly reminds us important dates and it even suggests what to write to our dearest friends.

Read the entire Next Nature is… series.

Back to the Tribe

Panoramic View in Open Air Hotel

Where are you going this summer? How about sleeping out in the open air in the Swiss Alps. No Wi-Fi, no walls, no bathroom and most certainly no roof, this is Null Stern‘s latest hotel concept. With its 6.463 feet above sea level, the hoteliers are taking “a room with a view” to the next level.

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Ground Level Traffic Lights For Smartphone Zombies
Suburban Utopia

Traffic Lights for Smartphone Zombies

Beware of Smombies! Don’t you know who they are? “Smombies” has been voted Word of 2015 in Germany to describe the zombie-like behavior of smartphone users causing traffic accidents. Augsburg, a city near Munich, is experimenting with embedding traffic lights into the pavement, warning pedestrians who are busy looking at their screens while walking.

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Forward to Nature

Join us

Virtual worlds, printed food, living cities, wild robots – we’re so surrounded by technology that it’s becoming our next nature. How can we live in harmony with it? The Next Nature Network is a 21st century nature organization that wants to go forward – not back – to nature. We stir debate, create events, exhibitions, publications and products that bring biology and technology into balance. Because ultimately, we may not just have to save the pandas but the people too. Will you join us?

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Robotic furniture for the young professional
Suburban Utopia

Shapeshifting Robotic Furniture

Moveable walls and multifunctional components, the in-house architectural robotics from Ori combines functionality with design. Ori, deriving from origami, is a line of connected smart products, developed by MIT Media Lab in partnership with designer Yves Béhar. Designed for micro-studios with less than 28 square meters of space, Ori transforms the space with a single push on the button. Aiming at young professionals paying high rents in urban centers, Ori houses a media center, storage space, a bench, a fold out desk, and a bed. It’s morphing time!

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Seeing more airplanes in the sky than birds
Anthropocene

What Is Next Nature? #10

One and a half century ago birds and insects were the only airborne creatures. The largest movements in the sky were, for example, swarms of starlings, migrating geese or a lone circling hawk. From the twentieth century a new entrant made its rise: aircrafts. Today 8.3 million people are held aloft by airplanes everyday. Commercial air traffic accounts for the 4% of the total global output of greenhouse gasses. Indeed, the impact on the environment is clearly visible and widespread. Near urban areas a clear blue sky without contrails is close to non-existent. Not only airplanes have become part of the visible and audible horizon, they also directly transform our landscape by creating cirrus cloud formations.

Read the entire Next Nature is… series.

Nongenetic Evolution

Growing Drones From Chemicals

Researchers from BAE Systems together with the University of Glasgow are experimenting with a new technology that in theory would be able to grow small-scale Unmanned Air Vehicles (UAVs) from chemical compounds. The breeding of drones explores how aircraft could be designed and manufactured in the future.

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