Texting smiley faces with a straight face
Society of Simulations

What Is Next Nature? #1

Laughing is meaningful in a social environment. We do most of our laughing together. But with smartphone interfaces slowly replacing real world interaction, our facial expressions become obsolete. In order to express our emotions in text messages we outsource them to emoji. At the moment we are awkwardly divided between laughing at our smartphone or texting laughing smileys while expressing nothing but a poker face.

This post is part of the Next Nature Is… series. Every week we will post an image with a statement about next nature in action. Some of them will be very recognizable, others will surprise you. Our next nature is unfolding itself all around us and we want you to recognize it as well.

Plastic Bottle Village
Plastic Planet

A Village Made of Plastic

Probably the house in which you live was built using some kind of plastic. In fact, plastic of all types is all around us, from our computers to our water bottles. It’s one of the most flexible materials known to man. But, as you probably know, the amount of plastic waste humans produce is immense, and most of it ends up polluting the environment and endangering wildlife. Yet in this case, one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. A canadian entrepreneur is trying to help reduce plastic pollution by building a village made out of plastic in Panama.

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Manufactured Landscapes

Iconic Buildings in Untouched Lands

What would happen if we could isolate iconic buildings and place them in beautiful natural settings? This is photographer and designer Anton Repponen‘s latest project, Misplaced → New York. He was able to put these stunning architectural monuments in the spotlight by placing them in a natural landscape, where they can be observed without all the distracting elements that surrounds them in a town, like New York City in this case.

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cyclist path commuters
Suburban Utopia

Fitness Trackers Help Improve Cycle Paths

How safe is it to cycle in your town? In most cities daily cyclists are stunningly increasing, but they also face quite some risks and unexpected events on their way. More and more towns are investing on improving bicycle paths, also hoping to decrease the number of car-users. To do so, some cities are taking advantage of technology, a very handy tool when it comes to data and information collection.

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Forward to Nature

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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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Society of Simulations

Xian’er, When Religion Meets A.I.

It can entertain elementary conversations, give advice, say prayers. We’re talking about Xian’er, the Buddhist robot-monk created at the request of a Buddhist temple near Beijing, the Longquan Temple, in collaboration with a dozen Chinese technology, culture and investment companies. Before becoming a robot Xian’er was a drawn character, invented by one of the monks of the temple, Master Fan Xian. He had already appeared in quite successful books and comics in China, that will probably be translated into English.

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The most densely populated island on Earth.
Suburban Utopia

The Most Densely Populated Island on Earth

Our peculiar image of the week comes from Colombia. The island Santa Cruz del Islote is only 0.012 square kilometers in size, but is home to over 1.200 people. That’s four times as dense as Manhattan. Locals moved there when they noticed the island had no mosquitoes. In this small plot of land there are: 90 houses, two shops, one restaurant, one all-ages disco and a school. Residents say life on the island is calm and peaceful. Nobody locks the door and everyone they know is just a few hundred meters away. It may be crowded, but it’s still paradise!

Via: CNTraveler

currency computational power computer chips processing for medicine
Wild Systems

A Cryptocurrency Helping to Cure Cancer

A ten part series exploring the design of an invisible technology: money.

1969. The historical year humanity first walked on the moon. This incredible event took years of engineering, billions of dollars and relied heavily upon state of the art computers. The Goddard Space Flight centre in the US was the epicenter of all these computers. Flight technicians used the IBM mainframe computer to maintain communication between Earth and the astronauts. This computer could perform several hundred thousand operations per second. Fast-forward almost 50 years and now a simple USB stick has more computational power than the computers used for the moon landing.

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Society of Simulations

Bringing The Web into Real Life

Biancoshock is an Italian street-artist, known for his provocative yet realistic projects. His last work is called Web 0.0, an urban activism project in which the Internet and web apps are contextualized in everyday life. It represents living proof that services like Facebook or WhatsApp have always existed and will continue to exist, even in a small provincial town almost untouched by virtual reality.

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Drones and agriculture
Manufactured Animals

Drones in Agriculture

It seems drones are everywhere these days. They became known as a way for unmanned aircraft to carry out military surveillance and attacks, and now hobbyists use them to take stunning photos and videos from the sky. Amazon has even tinkered with the idea of using drones for home delivery. As is the case with most new forms of technology, more and more uses for drones will become available over time. Here’s a look at how drones can and will impact the agriculture and farming industry.

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