Bold Construction Page 2 of 2 - Forbes.com Three years ago, as the construction industry cratered, Bill Haney and Maura McCarthy made the curious–maybe crazy–decision to launch a prefabricated- home business. Their vision: architect- designed, factory-built, single-family dwellings with green accents (including energy-efficient appliances and airtight construction) that appeal to higher- income, eco-conscious buyers. “Yes, the housing market has been decimated,” says Haney, 49. “But if you have the moxie to get going during a recession, you can build something sustainable and significant.” So-called modern prefab had become a staple of home-design magazines during the housing boom. But the economics of mass-producing green homes like Priuses didn’t work. With Blu Homes, headquartered in Waltham, Mass., Haney and McCarthy are building a different model. That recipe sounded plausible enough to attract $25 million in funding from investors like Abby Disney, Walt’s grandniece. Blu’s customers are clustered on the coasts. STEP 1.
10 interesting ways to harvest water from air Interesting ways to harvest water from air Every life form present on this blue planet needs water for survival. That’s the reason we see environmentalists over the world encouraging individuals to save every drop, as those precious drops might be what someone is desperately in need for. Since many potable water sources are contaminated, there are some designers who’re looking toward humid air to quench the thirst of millions. Here are some of the best devices that harvest fresh water from thin air: • Max Water: An Australian inventor has developed a device that is capable of harvesting unlimited water from air. • Watermill: Developed by Element Four, the Watermill generates and then filters water so that what comes out of it is fit for consumption. • Ersa: The Ersa by industrial designer Scott Norrie is designed as a standalone, sustainable product that uses solar energy to create water from air. • EcoloBlue: • RainCloud C-15: • Dew Drop: • DropNet: • Groasis Waterboxx: • Water Building Resort:
Living Generously: alternative and unique gifts for good that change lives Creatureama: Recycled Styrofoam Robots Invade Germany's Streets Darmstadt, Germany was invaded by giant robots this summer - but happily they turned out to be friendly. Designed by Terraform One, the Archibots are made from recycled styrofoam that was once used to package the high-tech products we love. The group's Creaturama project calls us to re-examine the objects we throw away by populating an urban environment with an upcycled population of automated figures made from salvaged components. Mitchell Joachim and his team at Terraform 1 are provocateurs of the built environment that excel at dreaming up new ways of building and getting around. Their recycled Creatureama installation explores the materiality of our world and ways that waste can be repurposed as raw material for our future needs. The environmental impact of waste and its transformation into something better is a predominant theme in Terraform 1’s work. + Terreform 1 Lead Photo Peter Kratzert
Butterfly Butterfly flying around a flower Etymology The name is derived from Middle English buterflie, butturflye, boterflye, from Old English butorflēoge, buttorflēoge, buterflēoge, perhaps a compound of butor (beater), mutation of bēatan (to beat), and flēoge (fly). Life cycle Mating Common Buckeye Butterflies The face of a Dryas iulia, more commonly known as a Julia butterfly. Butterflies in their adult stage can live from a week to nearly a year depending on the species. Butterflies may have one or more broods per year. Eggs Butterfly eggs are protected by a hard-ridged outer layer of shell, called the chorion. Butterfly eggs are fixed to a leaf with a special glue which hardens rapidly. Eggs are almost invariably laid on plants. The egg stage lasts a few weeks in most butterflies but eggs laid close to winter, especially in temperate regions, go through a diapause (resting) stage, and the hatching may take place only in spring. Caterpillars Wing development Last instar wing disk, Junonia coenia
Green Prefab Shed Homes: Small Space Living by Design Sheds do not sound like something you would want to live in, but as modern modular, mobile and miniature houses become increasingly popular sustainable living space options, well, even products dubbed with titles like the Big Shed and Little Shed is not such a bad idea. There is an art to designing smalls-space structures so they are convenient and compact but also comfortable and livable – and a certain lifestyle of simplicity sought by many that makes them a good match for some people.Plus, these designs by Dwelle are relatively affordable as home prices go: you can buy ones of these all-in-one buildings (and not worry about the hassles of construction) for between fifty and eighty thousand dollars. This surprisingly cheap and simple-yet-modern shed home is has its own living area complete with fireplace, elevated bedroom loft space and separated restroom and cooking areas.
Bill reduces drag: black skimmer Black Skimmer Rynchops niger Linnaeus, 1758 Common name: Black skimmer Habitat(s): Marine Coastal/Supratidal, Marine Intertidal, Marine Neritic, Wetlands Learn more at Some organism data provided by: ITIS: The Integrated Taxonomic Information System Organism/taxonomy data provided by: Species 2000 & ITIS Catalogue of Life: 2008 Annual Checklist IUCN Red List Status: Least Concern Application Ideas: Ship and small watercraft designs that reduce drag; cables, pylons, and other underwater structures that minimize material use and reduce drag. Industrial Sector(s) interested in this strategy: Transportation, shipping, communications, underwater infrastructure
WCER: About WCER The Wisconsin Center for Education Research is one of the oldest, largest, and most productive university-based education research centers in the world. Under the direction of Robert Mathieu, WCER provides a dynamic environment where some of the country's leading scholars conduct basic and applied education research. The WCER portfolio includes research centers and projects that investigate a variety of topics in education. A place for research WCER is home to some 425 faculty, staff, and graduate students who are engaged in more than 100 research projects spanning the full range of education research – including science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM), English language learning and assessment, social studies and literacy, the learning sciences, education policy, school finance and human resource management, teacher professional development, and value-added modeling. Training tomorrow's researchers Collaborating across disciplines Using technology to facilitate research
Artist Tom Shelton Turns Scavenged Metal Scraps into Adorable Sculptures Tom Shelton is a self-taught artist who works mainly with found objects. Shelton has spent years cultivating his art through sculpture, with special attention given to fashioning these cute little creatures from everything ranging from teapots to forks to candlestick holders. His assemblage is done mostly with nuts and bolts, giving a lasting structure to his piece, and his inspiration comes from the natural distress of the materials he uses, as well as the cyclic patterns found in nature. + What the Folk Art The article above was submitted to us by an Inhabitat reader.