Silver, gold or platinum creditcards? Expensive metals in credit card design used to have a certain luster in the past, yet today we are all (painfully) aware the mimicked material is totally meaningless – In the end it’s all plastic. So, why not going for something different?
Comeback of the ‘Ugly’ Fruits
Perhaps in the long run, historians will consider this as the official end of modernity as we knew it: The comeback of the wonky cucumber, abnormally bent banana, and comedy carrots, at least in the EU.
As of July 2009, the European Commission abolished more than two dozen laws that have stipulated the look of Europe’s fruit and vegetables – including Brussels sprouts – for the past 20 years. A majority of EU member states, including Britain and Ireland, have voted to reform rules like EC Commission Regulation No 2257/94, which stipulate that only the most perfect-looking produce adorns supermarket shelves and caused international ridicule by stating that all bananas must be “free of abnormal curvature” and at least 14 cm in length.
The Next Hacking Frontier: Your Brain
WiredScience writes: Hackers who commandeer your computer are bad enough. Now scientists worry that someday, they’ll try to take over your brain. In the past year, researchers have developed technology that makes it possible to use thoughts to operate a computer, maneuver a wheelchair or even use Twitter — all without lifting a finger. But as neural devices become more complicated — and go wireless — some scientists say the risks of “brain hacking” should be taken seriously.
Bioluminescent Trees will Replace Streetlights?
Most people know about light emitting organisms such as jellyfishes, fireflies and mushrooms. Some time ago, genetic engineers transferred genes responsible for the luciferin and luciferase proteins into a tobacco plant. These firefly proteins were then manufactured by the tobacco plant, causing it to glow and emit light.
20 Pound Mouse Pointer
The recent discussion on boomeranged metaphors reminded me of this 20 pound mouse hand created a some years ago for a Paradise by the laptop light event on Next Nature. The pionter counts 158 LEDs that are programmable per pixel line and was made by: David Menting, Jasper Dekker, Guus Baggermans and Brian Garret.
Austrian designers Katharina Mischer and Thomas Traxler have created a solar powered machine that makes arrays of furnishings that vary based on how much sunlight it receives over the course of a day. The machine spins spools of thread into stools, benches, containers, and lamp shades that wax and wane as the available sunlight shifts. Variations in weather, the time of year, and other environmental factors create pieces of different shape, color, and size, instilling the furniture with growing, seasonal qualities that mimic photosynthesis. The speed of the process determines the amount of saturation of the thread, giving a visual recording in the resulting object.
“The idea of a tree project” shows how objects can grow over time. Read more
Field of Waves
Parks are not nature. Parks are culture: man-made simulations of nature, carefully constructed to provide walkers, runners and mountain bikers with a recreational, yet confined – no wolfs & bears please! – ‘natural’ experience. As parks are merely images of nature, why not tweak the simulation a bit, while maintaining the calming qualities so highly appreciated by the human brain?
For the Storm King Art Center, artist Maya Lin created a simulation of undulating, rolling of waves using earth and grass. The waves range in height from ten to fifteen feet, with a trough-to-trough distance of approximately forty feet. Because it is executed in the same scale as an actual set of waves, the viewer’s experience is similar to that of being at sea, where one loses visual contact with adjacent waves. Compound curves allow for a complex and subtle reading of the space in the form of an environment that pulls the viewer into its interior and creates a sense of total immersion.