The multi-disciplinary conference is co-organized by Professor Matthew Tucker and Professor Christine Baeumler at the University of Minnesota. The event will bring together professionals from various disciplines to meditate on how the global environmental problems of the Anthropocene change our involvement with nature. The discussion will include post-industrial feral landscape ecology, eco-toxic tourism, manufactured urban ecosystems, post-natural disaster resiliency planning, hypernature and technology, and genetically modified environments.
The symposium is free and public, so make sure to drop by if you live around!
Next Nature @ Nature 3.x: Where is Nature Now?
Saturday, April 18 5 pm – 6 pm
U of MN Northrop Best Buy Theater, Minneapolis, USA
From buildings to artificial organs, 3D printing has the potential to print almost anything. However, one of the biggest limits of 3D printing is its slow printing speed. The current 3D printing technology prints an item by constructing them layer-by-layer, a process which can take several hours.
A team of researchers at UNC-Chapel Hill recently developed a new method that can reduce the printing process down to minutes.
Tuberculosis might sound like a thing of the past but it is still a serious problem, causing an estimated 1.3 – 1.5 million deaths in 2013 alone. The main root of tuberculosis is infected cattle, which is transferred to humans via consumption of unpasteurized dairy products. However, it has recently been announced that genetic modification allowed scientists to produce cattle resistant to tuberculosis.
“However, while 3D printers are becoming increasingly accessible and capable of rivalling the quality of professional equipment, they are still inherently limited by a small print volume, placing severe constraints on the type and scale of objects we can create.” Says designer Marcelo Coelho. With a very smart construction strategy in mind, Coelho developed together with designer and technologist Skylar Tibbits an algorithmic software named Hyperform.
The algorithm can transforms a needed form – possibly bigger than the printer’s measurement reach – into an origami-like chain structure, which can be unfolded into the bigger final product. Hyperform makes it possible to print bigger forms in a single piece, while the ordinary printers print different parts separately and assemblies them later. “Hyperform encodes assembly information into the actual parts, so there is no need for a separate assembly instruction sheet and parts don’t need to be individually labeled and sorted” says Coelho.
Satellite images of Earth at night evoke ambiguous feelings: While on a ground level our cities appear as purely cultural artifacts, a traveler from outer space might just as well marvel at them as beautifully glowing organic fungi-like structures that sprouted on our planet. Less than a millennium ago, the Earth at night was all dark. Today it is all glowing and blossoming.
Scientists think the laws governing the structure of galaxies in outer space are the same laws underlying the growth of cities. Henry Lin and Abraham Loeb at the Harvard-Smithsonian Centre for Astrophysics have used models for showing how galaxies evolve based on matter density to propose a unifying theory for scaling laws of human populations.
If you happen to be in New York City this week, you may want to join us for BIOFABRICATE, the world’s first summit dedicated to biofabrication for future industrial and consumer products.
The summit features visionary lectures from prominent thinkers and practitioners, including MOMA curator Paola Antonelli, Modern Meadow CEO Andras Forgacs, biocouture CEO Suzanne Lee and our own Koert van Mensvoort. Register here.
The next guest in our interview series is Chloé Rutzerveld, young talented and promising Food and Concept designer, from Eindhoven University of Technology. Chloé is interested in combining aspects of food, design, nature, culture and life sciences in a form of critical design. She uses food as a medium to address, communicate and discuss social, cultural or scientific issues.
Throughout 2014, Chloé worked on a 3D food printing project, titled Edible Growth, to show how high-tech or lab-produced food doesn’t have to be unhealthy, unnatural or not tasteful. Her concept is an example of a future food product fully natural, healthy, and sustainable.
The working principle combines aspects of nature, science, technology and design: multiple layers containing seeds, spores and yeast are printed according to a personalized 3D file. Within five days the plants and fungi mature and the yeast ferments the solid inside into a liquid. Depending on the preferred intensity, the consumer decides when to harvest and eat the edible. While the project is still speculative due to technological limits, the concept is very intriguing.
We recently talked with Chloé about people’s response to Edible Growth, the profession of food designer and new preparation methods and products that could be on our plate one day. Here’s what she had to say:
From food, to medicine, to material, it was plants that once guided human culture. Now that our culture is the most powerful force on the planet, how does it treat our green cousins? The Internet is awash with culture’s output, especially videos.
To recycle culture into fertilizer, the Raised on YouTube project aims to grow plants using only the dancing light and sound of algorithmically curated video.
Paris based artist and researcher Lia Giraud has created this green portrait. Nothing special you might think, until you realize it is alive: the green goo consist of microscopic algae.
The creation process is as follows: first algae are placed in a petri dish full of chemical nutrients. The algae are then exposed to an image and they will react to the light and form solids of different densities, forming an image. The procedure is very similar to a classic photo development, although this technique takes over four days to give life to the portrait.
When you don’t like your picture, you can just put it in the sun and it will turn into a beautiful even shade of green.