The LEED Dynamic Plaque displays real-time measurements of how a building is using its resources.
On Tuesday, a bonsai tree boldly went where no bonsai tree has gone before.
Azuma Makoto, a 38-year-old artist based in Tokyo, launched two botanical arrangements into orbit: “Shiki 1,” a Japanese white pine bonsai tree suspended from a metal frame, and an untitled arrangement of orchids, lilies, hydrangeas, and irises.
Who remembered that we’d gotten it wrong so many times?
Once the U.S. planted a flag on the moon, it was easy to forget the trials and tribulations of the space race. But did you know that the United States and Soviet Union combined for eight failed missions to the moon within a single year? Eventually, the U.S. got the Pioneer 4 (their fifth attempt) to do a successful flyby in 1959. The Soviet Union followed a few months later by topping us big time—they actually landed with their Luna 2, a probe that looks straight out of 1960s sci-fi television. It’s a story that you can follow in this pair of infographics created by Margot Trudell as part of her OCAD graduate thesis.
There are a ton of new features in iOS 8, but here are some gems you might have missed.
It’s tempting to think of iOS 8 as a more polished version of iOS 7; when you first install the update, there’s no visual cue that anything is different. But iOS 8 packs a long list of new features, some of which we’re still digging up weeks later. But what else is really new and worthwhile here? After thoroughly testing out the new OS, there were four such features that really stuck out.
Tooshlights uses light sensors to signal when bathroom stalls are free.
One of the worst things about public bathroom stalls is how hard it is to tell when someone’s in them. A lot of people end up resorting to that totally not-at-all awkward practice of peeking under the door, looking for feet.
A company calling itself Tooshlights is promising a way to end this indignity—and make that line of desperate people move more quickly, too. Its simple LED light sensors turn green when a stall is free and red when it’s occupied.
Names that tune in 3 notes
No, it’s not a contestant from the classic TV game show. It’s an IBM computer that uses algorithmic computation to identify a song’s musical period—Baroque, Classical or Romantic— in only three notes. And when applied to speech patterns, the same technology can be used as an early warning system for Parkinson’s disease and certain kinds of psychiatric disorders. Read on →
Like a lot of cities that want to encourage more people to bike, the town of Drammer, Norway, had a parking problem: There just weren’t enough bike racks to go around. So the city built a “bike hotel.”
Founded and curated by Amsterdam-based writer Bas Van de Poel, the Computer Virus Catalog collects the weirdest viruses from the annals of computer history, and visualizes them as art. By pairing a computer virus with a graphic designer, Van de Poel’s project is a wonderful tribute to the history of chaos, computers and code.
Leave a voicemail about a book you love and a story you’ve lived, the project asks.
It was a long flight, and one woman had brought Cutting For Stone by Abraham Verghese to occupy herself. When she got to the book’s saddest passage, she started sobbing. “I mean complete, shameless, snot flowing down my face sobbing,” she says. That’s when another woman sitting across the aisle from her handed her a tissue she had been holding in anticipation of this moment. “I read that book a few weeks ago, and I knew you were getting close,” she said.
This is one of many anonymous stories about books that has been told to Ishmael, of the site Call Me Ishmael, since it launched in June. The premise is simple: Anyone can call the site’s phone number and answer the prompt, “Leave a voicemail about a book you love and a story you’ve lived.”
Ishmael, who is voiced by TED-Ed director Logan Smalley, turns one of those voicemails each week into a video by sticking his iPhone to his typewriter with silly putty and running a transcription of the message through the roller to the speed of the audio. From a single prompt, the site has unleashed a wide range of stories.
Secret, the popular anonymous-sharing app, raised $25 million. Here’s how it went from poorly designed messaging app to red-hot startup.
One suggestion is to turn the Amazonian stadium into a giant jail. But two architects have a more positive idea: Why not convert part of the old stadiums into much-needed housing?
BlackBerry Assistant will be built into BlackBerry 10.3 and Passport devices.
True love is no match for a starchitect’s labyrinth. Yesterday, two lovebirds got engaged in the middle of Bjarke Ingels Group’s giant wooden maze inside the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C. The couple, identified by the National Building Museum as Erin O’Connor and Peter Dwyer, went to the museum on their first date.
The whole heartwarming event was filmed from a balcony: