I woke up to find an email from Cameron Sinclair thanking me for “designing like you give a damn.” Sinclair is the executive director of the Jolie-Pitt Foundation and, yeah, celebrities and politicians email me all the time. I’m also popular with Nigerians who need help cashing checks. I need to figure out how to […]
Photographer Beth Moon spent 14 years traveling to almost every continent taking pictures of the world’s oldest trees. Sixty of the resulting photos – printed with luminous results using a labor-intensive platinum/palladium process – form her book Ancient Trees: Portraits of Time (Abbeville Press). It’s a stunning record of nature’s majesty.
Assuming you stayed relatively sane on New Year’s Eve, you probably going to woke up the next day feeling optimistic, ready to start the new year with a clean slate. Maybe resolve to lace up the sneakers, or lay off the carbs. Or take it bigger and tackle a problem beyond yourself by investing in […]
This is the amazing tale of Derby the dog. The life of this little pup born with withered front legs took a radical turn when he met an animal lover named Tara Anderson. See the power of tech to change lives – all species welcome.
The Middle East and Africa subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation officially launched an outrageous shopping experience for its Xperia products this month, with a pop-up store located just offshore from the environmentally dubious World Islands in Dubai – and 4 meters under the sea. It’s the world’s first underwater store.
Italian architect Arturo Vittori and his colleague Andreas Vogler designed a low-tech machine, based on passive design, that can produce between 50 and 100 liters of clean drinking water daily, without electrical equipment and independent of land-based water sources. This inexpensive, easily assembled tower was designed specifically for rural communities in Ethiopia that lack access to safe […]
A hundred employees from The Ritz-Carlton in Riyadh planted over 300 trees in the hotel’s surroundings as part of a new environmental campaign called Green Earth, Clean Earth. The project is part of a global initiative called Clean up the World with a dual purpose to preserve the natural environment and give back to the […]
Photographs are visual reminders of past events, at least for those of us who can see. Scan a stack and stimulate long-forgotten memories. But what artifacts help the visually impaired to stroll through their histories? Singapore-based tech company Pirate3D is helping the blind to “see” photographs through their innovative 3D printing project, “Touchable Memories”. It began as […]
Drop-A-Brick is a clever PR campaign to cut water waste in severely parched California, a state with dwindling aquifers that is experiencing its worst drought in 500 years. It’s a project that can be implemented everywhere there is indoor plumbing, and the concept is sound – displace some tank water and over time, save buckets of the […]
Halloween landed on a Friday this year, meaning your “I have to work tomorrow” excuse for not dressing up becomes as flimsy as a ghost. So, with a few hours to prep before tonight’s parties begin, how do you devise a spooktacular costume without buying more polyester (most likely shipped over from China) to crap […]
Some advocates of eco architecture say that for preserving the urban space the higher up you build, the better. But with an astonishing amount of desert landscape all around us, in Asia, in the Middle East, Africa and even in the United States, we’re thinking – let’s showcase the buried homes, the sustainable buildings that have […]
Leading fashion houses are turning to schools in search of new materials for high-end handbags, shoes, and accessories. We’re talking fish schools, as designers troll seafood industry waste streams looking for alternatives to increasingly banned exotic leathers. It’s not new, but it is trending. Is “leather” made from fish skin inventive recycling or another misstep for […]
Imagine if passing through airport security could be as pleasant as a stroll through a park. Scientist June Medford is working to harness the innate sensing abilities of plants, genetically engineering them into lean, green bomb-and-drug detecting machines. Medford is a “synthetic biologist” (not to imply she’s artificial, but to clarify that she dabbles in the re-design […]
You’ve got open eyes. You’ve read the reports, like this one from the WWF on how polluting we’ve become. Yet we can’t get enough of consuming stuff on planet earth. Pick up the New York Times and see an editorial running on watch ads. Fancy, crazy expensive watches for elite people, not this planet in peril. […]
A pair of Israeli designers has turned alleyway graffiti into fine furniture with the help of some unwitting street artists in their south Tel Aviv neighborhood. It’s ersatz “WickiFurniture” made up anonymous contributions by anyone acting on an urge to create.
Love Lego as a kid? Or maybe you jumped straight into IKEA flat-pack furniture assembly? Now you can design and build your own low-energy, full-scale house with parts that slot together like a jigsaw puzzle. No nails or glue, screws or mortar. A new open source info system called WikiHouse allows you to download, adapt, “print” […]
How best to stay on track living productive, happy lives in the midst of communal fear and sadness? Tap into the healing power of nature, but make it more potent by pairing it with paint.
Breastfeeding is brilliant. Medically optimal for newborns and new mothers; naturally sustainable (no plastic bottles to create, clean and dispose of, no shipping and transport, and no need to refrigerate since it’s delivered on demand), and best of all it’s free. But how do you feel about breast milk turning into an accessory?
How do you feel about jewelry made from dead animals? I’m not talking about fetish jewelry where teeth, bones, and vertebrae turn into sinister charms, but tasteful pendants and earrings made more colorful by adding real insect wings.
Al Maktoum International Airport at Dubai World Central (DWC) was recently approved for a $33 billion expansion making it the largest airport project on the planet – another world record for the booming emirate.
An energy-efficient house in Barwa City, Qatar will be put through its paces to see if it can perform to computer-modeled expectations. We first visited the idea of Passivhaus in 2012, but much has progressed in making a new energy efficient standard green building for hot climates.
While many Muslims don’t drink alcohol, the people of Batroun, Lebanon love their beer. At least according to Jamil al-Haddad, the visionary behind Colonel beer and a new microbrewery built out of recycled materials.
Sometimes, design really does change lives. Dr. Amit Goffer previously designed ReWalk, a device that gives paraplegics paralyzed from the waste down mobility again. But 90 percent of handicapped people are unable to use it. In order to give quadriplegics a similar new lease on life, the Israeli designer made a few modifications with UPnRIDE.
Turn a sow’s ear into a silk purse (or silk scarves into a brilliant curtain) with upcycled materials sourced from your local souk. Make this patchwork curtain in under an hour and for about $10 – a little more work could turn it into a shower curtain or duvet cover. Get jiggy with junk! Here […]
Not everyone who visits Antalya wants to go scuba diving to see the extraordinary Mediterranean marine life, but now they can still catch a glimpse of what lives under the sea’s surface thanks to a beautiful new aquarium on the Turkish Riviera.