Don’t Fight the Snow, Build an Apartment Building with an Outdoor Ski Slope

This is an awesome idea! What a great use of space that encourages community involvement, cuts down on long commuting traffic in and out of the city, and more than anything is FUN!

Kazakhstan is no stranger to the harsh winter season. That’s why Shokhan Mataibekov, the brain behind The Slalom House, has proposed it as a 21-story residential apartment with an outdoor ski slope starting from its roof. The proposal is currently in the hands of the Union of Architects of Kazakhstan.Mataibekov, a skier himself, thought of the idea as he would travel four hours to reach the nearest ski slope. On the other hand, the Slalom House will be built in Kazakhstan’s capital, Astana.Residents of Astana experience minus 15 degree Celsius temperatures during winter, hence, the locals take advantage of the bitter cold by flocking the nearest ski slopes. But thanks to Mataibekov’s proposal, skiers need not go further than home anymore.

Source: Don’t Fight the Snow, Build an Apartment Building with an Outdoor Ski Slope

The archaeology of childhood | University of Cambridge

In graduate school I had the opportunity to perform a (very light) literary review of any archaeological topic of my choosing. I chose children’s artifacts, for the exact same reason these museum curators chose too; a surprisingly little amount is known about how children lived.

A sledge made from a horse’s jaw, the remains of a medieval puppet, the coffin of a one-year-old Roman child, and the skeleton of an Anglo-Saxon girl will all go on display in Cambridge today as part of a unique exhibition illuminating the archaeology of childhood.

Hide and Seek: Looking for Children in the Past opens today and runs until January 29, 2017, at Cambridge University’s Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, bringing together collections held by the University and Cambridgeshire County Council.

Unprecedented in its scope and ambition, Hide and Seek examines why so little is known about the life of children when children have outnumbered adults for most of human history.

More photos and the full article at: The archaeology of childhood | University of Cambridge

As the article points out, often artifacts associated with children are often unclear in their use. Were they toys? Tokens of protection? And how many toys made of paper, wood, or other perishable items have been lost to history? A very fascinating topic.

New Study: Students Learn Better in Classrooms with Views of Trees

Similar to findings in hospital environments, what you see every day impacts your body and your brain.

The Dirt

A Tree Campus, Rice University / Carol Ciarniello A Tree Campus, Rice University / Carol Ciarniello

What if what is outside a school’s windows is as critical to learning as what’s inside the building? A fascinating new study of high school students in central Illinois found that students with a view of trees were able to recover their ability to pay attention and bounce back from stress more rapidly than those who looked out on a parking lot or had no windows. The researchers, William Sullivan, ASLA, professor of landscape architecture at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and Dongying Li, a PhD student there, reported their findings in the journal Landscape and Urban Planning.

Sullivan and Li argue that “context impacts learning. It is well-documented, for instance, that physical characteristics of school environments, such as lighting, noise, indoor air quality and thermal comfort, building age and conditions all impact learning.” However, schools’ surrounding landscapes have been…

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Why Schools And Hospitals Should Be More Like Theme Parks

The idea of making hospitals less scary and more “visitor first” focused is not only important from a customer service perspective, it also calms the patient and leads to faster healing times.

Understanding how designers create theme parks could help us reimagine our most important social institutions.

The technologies and narrative devices common at theme parks could be easily applied to other institutions. Consider the hospital or medical clinic of the near future. While you don’t expect to have fun visiting one of these places, you do at least hope to avoid being overwhelmed, bored, annoyed, confused, or frightened. Taking a “guest-first” approach, in the parlance of the theme park industry, the hospital offers a computer system that, through a series of encounters, gets to know you, and across visits remembers you and your medical history. It allows the hospital to route you through an experience that feels relatively stress-free, intuitive, supportive and, most importantly, centered around you. Logistics like transportation are orchestrated for you, redundant administrative tasks are minimized, and doctors and nurses have information at their fingertips that helps them put your care first. Something that is typically cold and impersonal becomes simple and human, not just while you’re in the building, but before and after your visit, within the larger context of your personal health.

Source: Why Schools And Hospitals Should Be More Like Theme Parks

Radio Telescope Sculpture Turns Movement into Light and Sound | The Creators Project

Lumiere London 2016 is in full swing, bringing with it various light installations to enhance the city’s most famous locations. 30 artworks will be aglow this weekend at places like Trafalgar Square, Westminster Abbey, Carnaby Street, Oxford Circus, King’s Cross, and many others. At the latter, digital studio FIELD—founded by Marcus Wendt and Vera-Maria Glahn—present their stunning sculpture, Spectra-3. The piece is the latest instalment of their ongoing Spectra series, a merging of physical and virtual sculptures that take inspiration from space, technology, and our relationships to them, to provide elegant and sensory experiences using sound, light, and reflection.Spectra-3’s design and movement is inspired by the radio telescopes of the Very Large Array (VLA) located on the Plains of San Agustin in New Mexico. The piece combines computer-aided design with real-time input from the public’s movements, to inform its physical actions as it rotates on motors, augmenting the space with the enchanting hues and patterns of reflected light and spatialized sound.It’s the biggest self-commissioned artwork the studio have ever done. Built from bespoke steel and surrounded by sensors, at nearly 10′ tall, it’s controlled by custom software which commands the motors, lights, haze, and multi-channel sound.

Source: Radio Telescope Sculpture Turns Movement into Light and Sound | The Creators Project

Abstract Browser Tapestries Reimagine Surfing the Net | The Creators Project

A great interpretation of technology into art…

In a new show hanging at Steve Turner Contemporary in Los Angeles, Rafaël Rozendaal’s Abstract Browsing goes offline. The free Chrome extension was released in 2014, and transforms the web into an abstract collage of bright rectangles in randomized colors. Rozendaal, who uses the plugin every day and keeps an archive of his favorite screenshots, sifted through his collection and selected six compositions to turn into Jacquard woven tapestries, each nearly 5 x 9 feet.

View more tapestries at : Abstract Browser Tapestries Reimagine Surfing the Net | The Creators Project

Little Girl Forgets Her Stuffed Bunny At Hotel, Staff Takes It On Adventure | Bored Panda

I love that this has become a THING now that hotels, airports, and other tourism industry focused places do. Sure it’s good PR, but it ALSO provides adults a chance to play!

When Adare Manor Hotel’s staff in Ireland found a lost bunny, they decided to have a little fun. They shared its photo on Facebook captioned “I lost my owner at breakfast in Adare Manor.” It went viral, so they decided to treat the bunny with 5-star service.“We decided to keep it going,” a spokesperson for the hotel told BuzzFeed. “We thought Facebook was a great way to get the word out there.”

They kept posting funny photos with the bunny enjoying the hotel until it was happily reunited with the owner, Kate Hogan.

more at the source: Little Girl Forgets Her Stuffed Bunny At Hotel, Staff Takes It On Adventure | Bored Panda

Nature: An Antidote to Crime and Isolation


Spending time in nature, even in urban areas like Central Park, is associated with a greater degree of social cohesion and lower crime rates. Lucas Jackson / REUTERS

A wealth of research shows that just being in nature, even a city park, can make us feel better, both psychologically and physically. Such contact with nature can improve mood, reduce pain and anxiety, and even help sick or injured people heal faster. But what effect does it have on groups of people and society at large? New research suggests that nature can actually improve the degree to which people feel connected to and act favorably toward others, specifically their neighbors, says Netta Weinstein, a senior psychology lecturer at Cardiff University in Wales.

More: Nature: An Antidote to Crime and Isolation

Looking at all the things they measured, there could be multiple factors that contributed to this correlation, but no matter what they found that nature played some signficant level of impact, and that is a very valuable finding.

About – Project for Public Spaces

I just discovered this organization and I’m already in love…

Project for Public Spaces (PPS) is a nonprofit planning, design and educational organization dedicated to helping people create and sustain public spaces that build stronger communities. Our pioneering Placemaking approach helps citizens transform their public spaces into vital places that highlight local assets, spur rejuvenation and serve common needs.

Since 1975 we have completed projects in more than 3000 communities in 43 countries and all 50 U.S. states and are the premier center for best practices, information and resources on placemaking.

Read more about – Project for Public Spaces

Calling all Artists! – Seattle Bridge Residencies for 2016

The Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT), in partnership with the Office of Arts & Culture (Arts), is excited to announce two unique opportunities for artist residencies in 2016. Using the towers of two movable bridges as a canvas, the City is seeking an individual or team of artists for two residencies, one for the Fremont Bridge and one for the University Bridge.

Find out more at: Calling all Artists! – Seattle Bridge Residencies for 2016