Kinetic Energy + Rocking Chairs = Smart Seating

Kinetic Energy From Rocking Chairs Equals Smart Seating

Kinetic energy may be difficult to harvest on a large scale basis, and can be unreliable. However, in places where there is a constant barrage of motion it can be useful. Take for example, swings or rocking chairs. The way that rockers are designed are ideal for harnessing energy produced from motion and utilizing it. A clever idea for creating power from movement surfaced in a swing design a few years back. Ryan Klinger designed a glider style seat called Empower that captures energy from the rocking motion. Coming out a 2nd place winner among designs at the Greener Gadgets… read more

Working Better Outdoors

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We are not merely surrounded by nature, but enclosed within it, even if a seamless existence is obstructed by the erection of pillars and walls. That isn’t to say that self-confinement indoors isn’t suffocating. Nor, on the other end, does it imply pure living is exclusive to residing in a stony dwelling left agape to the wilderness. However, there exists a faulted notion that nature is a mere adjunct to a life in the built environment; as though the two are separate, mutually-exclusive worlds. The latter a foggy, safe recluse; offering a comfortable if claustrophobic existence, that is all too… read more

Changsha’s Vertical City

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The Broad Sustainable Building company is taking vertical living to a new level with the construction of a skyscraper that will encapsulate an entire city. The 220-storied highrise, called Sky City, is scheduled to begin construction next month in Changsha, which is the capital of the Hunan providence in China. At the time of writing, Sky City is to be the world’s tallest building, rising 10 meters above Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, at 838 meters high. The project is also significantly cheaper, costing 17 times less than Burj Khalifa, despite an estimated 90 day-long construction period. The speedy assemblage can attributed… read more

LEGOs: Combining Play and Learning

LEGOs: Combining Play and Learning

LEGO sets may be a first introduction to design and architecture for many during their childhood years. Planning, building, demolishing and rebuilding can be considered rites of passage in the world of imaginary play. Toys like LEGOs can help build motor skills and develop strategy building abilities. They are even on an upcoming agenda to be used in a school curriculum in Denmark for children ages 3 through 7, with plans for eventually providing instruction for those up to age 16. The International School of Billund, located in Jutland near the LEGO birthplace, is working to become the first of its… read more

Sports Arena Updated With Sustainable Design

Sports Arena Updated With Sustainable Design

Brazil is the home place of a large scale operation that modernized a sports stadium to meet greener operating standards. It is also the designated spot of the much awaited International Federation of Association Football (FIFA) 2014 World Cup. Initially built in1965, the Mineirão Stadium located in Belo Horizonte was in need of many upgrades. Sports stadiums use up enormous amounts of energy and materials in construction. Further, keeping them running can be costly and have a rather large, ongoing footprint. To make this particular structure more environmentally compliant several eco-focused designs were implemented, ending in a million dollar makeover. It… read more

The Evolution Of The Supermarket

Artist's Rendering

For decades, the image of a cement building with names such as Wal-Mart, Kroger, Price Chopper, or even Dad’s Grocery plastered on them have been the design standard for marketplaces worldwide. Groceries, hardware stores, etc, all follow this model. It hasn’t evolved in the past two centuries, at least, not until now. The image below marks a significant upgrade from the tired old designs we’re used to seeing, and it comes from China. The asian superpower has recently proven itself as quite the innovator in recent years when it comes to architecture. It began with the giant “nest” created for… read more

Giant Skyscraper With Innovative Design

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India seems to be the leading country when it comes to large and over-the-top skyscraper designs, and they’ve recently struck gold yet again. Smith + Gill Architects revealed their plans for Imperial Tower; a 116 story skyscraper set to take the throne as Mumbai’s largest building. The news is big, but it’s the company’s description of the building that’s caused some head-scratching among those in the industry. “The building is designed to confuse the wind….If we think of this thing as an instrument, you’re cutting grooves into the body, you can basically define the characteristics of its behavior.” Essentially, the… read more

Turning A Barn Into Recycled Wooden Home

Labor 13 Turns Barn Into Recycled Wooden Home

Immersed into the wild landscape of bohemian Czech Republic there is an open plan dwelling made from local recycled materials. Standing on a piece of land of a former barn, the shelter was named ‘Conceptual Object in Vernerice’ as it is an experimental piece of architecture near a town called Vernerice. Long and lean, this beautiful wooden shelter sits right in the northern area of Czech Republic. Designed by local studio Labor 13, the shelter is charming and full of historic references that left a distinct mark. Built with a great respect for its past, the architects left untouched as… read more

The Depave Movement Battles Concrete Landscapes

Depave is a movement with a mission. The drive to replace excess concrete to green up city spaces has inspired and fueled their crusade. Located in Portland, Oregon, the nonprofit organization attempts to enrich existing dull pavement plots and to promote more aesthetically pleasing spaces. Their idea is that living in the city does not have to mean giving up green areas. It is against human nature to be constantly disconnected with outdoor surroundings, and bringing life back into urban spaces that are overabundant with concrete backdrops is a valuable way to put unused, stark sections of land to work. With… read more

The Downdraft Tower – A Windy Alternative

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We know skyscrapers – and other structures of human occupation – consume a lot of energy over their lifetime, but what if there was a skyscraper that generated energy instead? When completed, the proposed Downdraft Tower will make this possible. The Downdraft Tower is the central project of the Clean Wind Energy company, a public company who focuses on green alternatives to traditional wind sourced energy. Further developing a concept that was created nearly thirty years ago, the tower would utilize proven methods to create a reliable source of wind energy. The tower could operate in most climates, though it is… read more