Calm-technology

Wifi SM: Feel the global pain

You have the impression that the disasters of the world do not touch you anymore? You feel vaguely sorry for other people’s misfortunes but you don’t feel the inner urge which used to make you help your neighbour? WiFi-SM is the solution!

WiFi-SM automatically detects the information from approximately 4.500 news sources worldwide updated continuously and analyses them looking for specific keywords such as death, kill, murder, torture, rape, war, virus etc. Each time the text of the news contains one of these keywords, your WiFi-SM device is activated through the Wi-Fi network and provides you with an electric impulse.

www.unbehagen.com/wifism/

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Manufactured Animals

Robo-carp

Scientists in Japan have developed a koi robot that swishes around in water just like the real, fishy thing, and does stuff real koi can’t: swim in reverse and rotate in place. Robocarp was demonstrated in a pond on the grounds of the Hiroshima Machinery Works facility of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries.

The makers | or watch the video

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Officegarden

Interruptions

Every ecology needs balance. So that’s also true for the ecology of the office. The office is a ecology that is highly regulated: temperature, light, humidity, distance to other living creatures and others are thought of and are standardized, often worldwide as more and more companies operate around the world.

So— what they need is a bug in the system:

We harness interruptive technology to expose the secret possibilities of the workday. As a time-stealing agency, the Bureau of Workplace Interruptions works directly with employees to invisibly insert intimate exchange into the flow of the workday. Our promise is to create interruptions that challenge the needs of our users and the social and economic conditions of the modern workplace.

You know how receiving flowers at work can put a buzz on the rest of the day? So do we. That’s why we create surprise, the kind that slices through the banal and opens up new places for your mind to wander. The ruptures we create are temporary spaces for open dialogue, invisible resistance, and general amusement. In short, we hope to invigorate some of the time you spend at work in order to create new experiences and possibilities outside the flow of capital.

How does this work?

When you submit a request for interruption, our agents go to work finding the right interruption for you. We consider your occupation, work hours, and the means by which we can contact you. Once a feasible interruption has been decided on, we work to slip it into your day via mail, email, telephone, or a workplace visit. We strive throughout this process to keep our actions invisible to your employer.

www.interruptions.org/

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Digital-Presence

Second Life

Second Life is a privately owned, subscription based virtual world created in 2003 by San Francisco-based Linden Lab. Founded by former RealNetworks CTO Philip Rosedale, Second Life gives its users (referred to as ‘residents’) tools to add to and edit its world and participate in its economy. The majority of the content in the Second Life world is resident-created.

www.secondlife.com | http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Second_Life

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Dynamic-architecture

Pig City

The Netherlands produces some 16.5 million tons of pig meat each year, making it the European Union’s leading exporter. In 1999 there were officially 15.2 million pigs in the country, and 15.5 million people. Each pig requires 664 square metres of space, including that required for meat processing.

The Rotterdam architecture office MVRDV studied ways to streamline production in the intensive pig farming sector. Animal welfare and efficient land use were important factors in developing the concept. The result is Pig City: tall towers in which pigs spend their entire lives.

www.architechtenweb.nl

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Biopolitics

Ideology becomes nature

Is this fake nature? Surely, it’s nature altered by human hands. Somewhere in the East German forest these trees started to change color in autumn a little earlier than all the surrounding trees. Year after year. They where put there by some freak years ago but where only recently cut down.

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Digital-Presence

From Silver Screen to Computer Screen

Fans of The Sims video game spent the Oscar Sunday evening making virtual copies of the red carpet fashions worn by Oscar winner Reese Witherspoon, contender Keira Knightley and presenter and trend setter Jennifer Lopez, then offering them for free trade Monday.

Players of The Sims games create and control simulated people, doing everything from dressing them to guiding them through social situations. Of the Oscar dresses made available for free download on the game’s community website Knightley’s aubergine Vera Wang sheath was the most downloaded, followed by the virtual rendition of Witherspoon’s original Christian Dior Haute Couture dress.

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The-map-is-the-territory

Surfing the marble

The world is flat again! Here’s how the worlds largest search engine company describes its newest toy: To put it simply, Like a game community, Google Earth is growing its own: thousands of people every day, scratching the marble, looking for that state secret bunker and alien vessel launching facility.

Google Earth next nature? The point is: we are getting to know our planet so much better now that it is downloadable.

www.theregister.co.uk/2005/09/13/google_earth_threatens_democracy/
www.theregister.co.uk/2006/02/06/greenwich_meridian/
www.theregister.co.uk/2006/01/09/google_lancaster/

If you don’t want to download Google Earth: www.flashearth.com

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Made-to-debate

Utility Pets

In the not-so-distant future people will be given a pig with their own DNA engineered into it. The pig, known as a “knockout” pig in the scientific jargon, is a form of living insurance policy – an organ bank.

The Utility Pets project explores what kind of new objects might be needed if the pig lives in the home with its owner’s family. Utility Pets draws attention to the ethical consequenses of xenotransplantation – the transplantation of animal organs into humans.

www.eliocaccavale.com

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