Cathi Bond is just back from the Venice Architecture Biennale, which features the latest thinking about architecture and development. This year’s show is called Common Ground, and Cathi finds it an apt term, as she finds themes of sustainability and community enliven the mind and boost the spirit.
Nora Young talks about the new Kindle Serials plan (via Fast Company), and wonders whether this is good for writers and readers. If you’re a writer, what would you make of this? As a reader, would you contribute to the critique of a writer you like?
Update: We had a problem with the original audio file, which will be the one you have if you got it on the evening of Sept 16th. New file in place now. Thanks!
In today’s trendwatching podcast, Nora Young mentions this article from Triple Pundit on overcoming the stigma of sustainability (via PSFK). Surveys show people identify sustainability as either elitist, or for ‘granola’ types. If sustainable costs more to produce, is there a way around this?
Perhaps the answer lies in size. Cathi Bond talks about Adrian Smith and Gordon Gill Architecture’s plan for the Wuhan Greenland Center. It’s huge, and resembles London’s ‘pickle building‘. It also has many sustainable features, such as re-use of grey water. Nora wonders if sheer size can bring down the cost of sustainable design.
In today’s trendwatching podcast, Cathi Bond mentions the Dazer Laser, as an alternative to the taser (via Gizmag). Essentially, it shines an incapacitating (and sometimes nauseating) light in your eyes, but does no permanent damage. Plans are to market it to police, rather than the general public (whew).
Meanwhile, Nora Young mentions this post about cities for cyborgs, over at Tim Maly’s Quiet Babylon blog. Keiichi Matsuda talks about how we would design cities if we thought of the human inhabitants as nomadic cyborgs. It reminds Nora of Philip Beesley‘s comments about responsive architecture. Check it out!
In this trendwatching podcast, Cathi Bond points to PSFK’s take on a cool Danish building, which incorporates traditional hunting grounds: modernism meets traditionalism?
Nora Young points to another example of the ‘urbanites returning to traditional skills’ trend: baby sitters for your urban chickens! (Via Springwise)
In this trendwatching podcast, Cathi Bond talks about the fact that the South Korean Supreme Court has legalized the exchanging of virtual gaming money for cold, hard cash (via Gizmag). Nora Young chats about learning from insect architecture for human buildings, in particular, termite mounds (via New Scientist). Yet more of the biomimetic architecture we’ve been sniffing for some time. Cathi and Nora are reminded of the Etruscan Tombs, or Sagrada Familia… but with termites!
In today’s trendwatching podcast, Dubai may be facing dire debt woes, but Cathi Bond looks at yet another huge architectural project conceived for Dubai: Vertical Village (Check it out at Graftlab)
Meanwhile, Nora Young has spotted two intriguing trends in men’s fashion: Broadcaster Jesse Thorn has a new video podcast called Put This On, which features practical guy-to-guy fashion info. Men’s style mavens in New York just had their second annual Pop Up Flea, a hipster, curated vintage and new men’s fashion event.(via Coolhunting). Nora wonders if it’s evidence that men of a move we’ve seen with women’s fashion for a while now: less of the ‘voice from on high’ fashion advice, and more of the ‘slightly cooler friend’ tipping you off to great style
In today’s podcast, Nora Young mentions Henry Jenkins’ talk about transmedia storytelling. It’s been liveblogged here. Cathi wonders whether authors will go along with people’s desire to participate in creating stories in other media, as well.
Cathi Bond talks about The Sleep Box, a mini sleep station for weary travelers (via PSFK). Would you use it?
In this trendwatching podcast, Nora Young talks about a post on Khoi Vinh’s Subtraction blog. He quotes Nicolai Ouroussoff bemoaning the scrapping of Frank Gehry’s design for a new basketball stadium in New York. Nora points out it’s another example of the way ‘starchitecture’ projects are drying up, as they have talked about on previous Sniffers. Cathi wonders why that means reverting to the lowest common denominator, rather than promoting younger architects and sustainable design. Nora says developers are already complaining about the city of Toronto’s plan to require green roofs (via The Globe and Mail).
Plus, Cathi points out the sexy retro-cool Paloma Picasso sunglasses, available from Net-a-Porter. Nora says she’s happy that it’s an alternative to the white hipster sunglasses, and 80s Tootsie glasses.