The future of wallpaper is: glowing? That’s Philips’ vision for the future it seems, as the company is teaming with Kvadrat Soft Cells to create a kind of luminous textile for the consumer market that will essentially embed adjustable LEDs in an acoustic panel that can be hung on the wall to provide ambient lighting like an active piece of artwork, or even be used as a wallpaper to bathe entire rooms in soft tones of the user’s choosing.
Throughout the 20th century, New York maintained a reputation for being the greatest city in the world. It housed the world's tallest building, the most extensive subway system and a group of the world's most creative minds. While the city strikes us as an aggressive, ambitious place, New York thrives on a sensr of nostalgia as much as of enterprise. What New Yorker hasn't felt incensed upon seeing a mom-and-pop deli replaced by a CVS? Who hasn't felt overcome with sentiment while beholding the Brooklyn Bridge on a summer evening? How fitting, given that we're using our archives to tour old-school NYC this weekend.
Future cities could include pancake-shaped buildings, power plants that harvest lightning and ocean-based skyscrapers that produce potable water and clean up trash. Those are some of the visions in the 2011 eVolo Skyscraper Competition, a forum for futuristic — and even fantastical — ideas for new architecture.
Click here to see the winning designs and some other interesting entries.
3-D printing is a young technology, but its pioneers and champions aren't satisfied with printing cars, airplane parts, or tiny edible spaceships--they're always looking down the road at what's next. We talked with some of the best minds in 3-D printing about their dream projects--not what's possible now, but what their current work might lead to in five or ten years. These six dream projects are pretty astounding, and what's most striking is how attainable they seem. These aren't pipe dreams. They're our future.
A new bridge concept incorporates wind and solar energy into its design, generating 40 million kilowatt-hours per year — and looking pretty slick to boot.
The Solar Wind concept would use the space between an existing viaduct in southern Italy to install 26 wind turbines, which designers Francesco Colarossi, Giovanna Saracino and Luisa Saracino say could provide 36 million kilowatt hours of electricity every year.
The Eiffel Tower was intended to stand for only 20 years past its 1889 debut--in fact, the original contest rules for the design stipulated that the tower must be easily demolished. Experts at the time predicted it would come crashing down before construction was even finished. Yet it has withstood both the general hatred Parisians feel for it and the test of time, and is still standing. Specialists have constructed an incredibly elaborate software model to explore the tower's longevity, and discovered its secret.
Most architect design buildings with permanence in mind, engineering them to last decades if not centuries. Swedish architecture firm Jagnafalt Milton thinks the city of the future should be anything but permanent. The firm has won third place in a contest to to develop a the Norwegian city of Åndalsnes with a plan to create a configurable city that rolls buildings around on rails.
On a rural spread of acreage in South Carolina, insurance companies are looking to cover themselves against losses by knocking down houses. That might sound counterintuitive, but from an engineering standpoint it makes perfect sense. The industry-funded Institute for Business & Home Safety yesterday opened a $40 million, 2,300-square-foot disaster lab yesterday that is among the best in the world, with the ability to subject entire homes to tornado-strength winds or Category 3 hurricanes.
Conceptual shelters that will protect us all from the perils of our rapidly changing environment: rising waters, extreme heat, rampant pollution and overpopulation
By Suzanne LaBarrePosted 10.18.2010 at 12:40 pm 27 Comments
Environmental disruptions and technological advances have always influenced where and how people live. Early humans may have left Africa after rapid fluctuations in rainfall destroyed their food supply, and the opening up of the American Southwest occurred roughly in parallel with improvements in air-conditioning technology. In the decades ahead, a warming planet and a booming population will again alter where we live and how we construct our homes.