Archive

Persia peeks out

Nations delineated on a world map have an attractive but misleading simplicity: marked out with a single name and a single colour, we tend to ascribe one-word attributes to them as well. But one doesn’t have to look hard to

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Looking for less than zero

With sustainability rapidly emerging as a typical design criterion for higher-end buildings, third-party “green building” certifications like LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) have become familiar terms even to non-architects. New or renovated buildings may be LEED certified at

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Teaching electric eagles to soar

Ever since the mythical Icarus and his father Daedelus attempted to fly by affixing bird feathers to their arms with wax, humankind has systematically used nature as a model in its quest for the secret of flight — an approach

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Recent best: Sonia Katyal

Sonia Katyal is a professor of intellectual property and civil rights law at Fordham Law School in New York City. She is the co-author of Property Outlaws: How Squatters, Pirates, and Protesters Improve the Law of Ownership (Feb 2010, Yale

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Midlake’s new nineteenth century

Guest post by Luke Grundy In 1999, a group of jazz students at North Texas University played Led Zeppelin and funk jams under the alias “The Cornbred All-Stars”. Now, eleven years after these first musical forays, Midlake, as they have

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Natural life as parade, x-ray, fossil

“A nature documentary filmed with an x-ray camera” might, as a description, conjure a fairly accurate mental image of Ladislao Kelity’s drawings. But while in many of his works the skeletons of animals can indeed be clearly seen through their

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Objective, verifiable lies – and why we need them

Like active duty soldiering, accounting is one of those peculiar occupations which is made up of long stretches of humdrum activity — at least this is how it appears to outsiders — punctuated by unpredictable moments of turmoil and fear.

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From paper flowers to platonic kisses

Having graduated with an electrical engineering degree, Suhasini Paul decided that toys were her real future — and, after a 2005 post-grad at the National Institute of Design in Ahmedabad, India, she began designing them with abandon. Her toys are

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Too much evidence, too little judgment?

When confronted with the complexity and ambiguity of disease or even of every-day sickness, each of us as patients could hardly be blamed for taking comfort in an approach to medicine that is advertised as scientific, rational, and founded on

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More than intellectual eye-candy

A recent trend in publication design is the filling of surplus page space with boxes containing over-sized numerals which are in turn followed by text in a smaller font, the pair in combination relating a statistical fact of potential interest

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Lots of sex please, we’re apes

Guest post by Zach Kuehner It is no secret. Countless marriages end in divorce. Some statistics estimate that more than half of all marriages eventually fail. It is clear that something is wrong, but every day, starry-eyed sweethearts rush down

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The shining white reef of Shenzhen

Like Chicago after the Great Fire of 1871, China’s rapid economic development and associated cultural aspirations have enabled it to serve as a kind of blank slate for some of the most vibrant and radical architecture being built in the

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