These houses can survive natural disasters

 

Japan Dome House, a modular home manufacturer, has been making and selling its styrofoam dome houses for over fifteen years, but since the April 2016 Kumamoto earthquakes, there has been a surge of interest in the company’s products.

Some readers may do a double take, as the material used for these homes is indeed styrofoam.

Polystyrene (more commonly known as styrofoam) is widely used for everything from cups and food containers to packaging material. Polystyrene is a petroleum-based product made from the styrene monomer, which is classified as a possible human carcinogen by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and by the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC).

 

Some countries and municipalities around the world (including Taiwan and Portland, Oregon and Orange County, California in the U.S.) have also banned the use of polystyrene foam.

Nevertheless, the future of earthquake-resistant home building in Japan may very well come in the shape of domed houses built from this material.

Aso Farm Land
On April 16, 2016, a magnitude 7.0 main shock struck the city of Kumamoto in Kyushu Prefecture (following a foreshock two days earlier). The two earthquakes killed at least 49 people and injured some 3,000 others.

Many structures in Kumamoto and Oita Prefectures collapsed and caught fire, and more than 44,000 people were evacuated from their homes due to the disaster. Thousands of evacuees are still living in temporary housing.

However, among the structures that were not damaged was a small village of 480 houses at the Aso Farm Land resort, a health-themed national park built on a somma volcano, in Kyushu. Visitors to Aso Farm Land can enjoy numerous open-air hot springs and stay overnight in differently-themed accommodations.

The “Village Zone” of Aso Farm Land consists of 480 closely-packed dome-shaped houses made of a next-generation form of polystyrene foam. When the Kumamoto earthquake struck, none of these dome houses were damaged. This has has lead to a surge of interest in the technology behind their construction.

Fourth-Generation Building Material
Japan Dome House, based in Kaga City, Ishikawa Prefecture, claims that it has developed a fourth generation building material (following wood, iron, and concrete); and that its dome house has a number of characteristics that makes it superior to conventional materials and house shapes.

Using proprietary technology, it has developed an expanded polystyrene (EPS) product that is much stronger and more compact than the foam that is used for shipping material and food containers.

 

The company believes that its dome houses have a number of benefits. These include:

Ultra-Short Building Time

A dome house can be assembled in about a week by three or people, using modular dome pieces that weigh only about 80-kg (176 pounds).

Ultra-Low Cost
The company says that the total construction cost of a basic dome house is between ¥7 million and ¥8 million ($68,700 and $78,500) for a house with a floor space of about 36-sqm (387-sqft) and a ceiling height of 3 meters (9.8 feet).

Highly Earthquake Resistant
Because of its dome shape, the lack of a need for posts and beams in construction, and its extremely light weight the dome house is highly earthquake resistant.

Ultra-Thermal Insulating

Expanded polystyrene also has very high thermal insulating properties. This combined with the dome shape (which allows air to circulate by convection and prevents it from accumulating in corners) makes the dome house highly energy-saving.

Highly Durable
Polystyrene also does not rust or rot and is not subject to termite infestation. After assembly, the walls of the Dome House are also coated with fire retardant making the houses fireproof.

The dome shape of the house also makes it resistant to high winds.

Antioxidant Building Construction
The company also claims that its houses are healthy to live in because an anti-oxidant solution is kneaded into the polystyrene foam building material. Formaldehyde is also not used in the construction process which means that Japan Dome Houses do not suffer from “sick-house” syndrome.

Certification
The Dome House and the company’s specially developed polystyrene foam have also been certified by the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Tourism and Industry as being compliant with national building codes.

Customizable Dome Houses
Japan Dome House has developed a number of modular parts for its dome houses, which makes them highly customizable.

The company says its dome houses are used around Japan not only as residences but also as small hotels, steam rooms, temples and churches, child care centers and educational facilities and even karaoke bars. Because they can be quickly assembled there is also growing interest in using them as temporary housing for evacuees from natural disasters.

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Perfection: Greek Hotel Made For Families with Little Travelers

Based on my personal experience traveling with kids is 10x harder Than traveling with adults. The kids nends special places that satisfy their desires and needs ! On the other hand though, I experienced  more that traveling with kids has become much easier (such a contradiction I know) but it all depends on the destination. It does take a bit more effort on the parent’s part but hotels have become much more accommodating and even have suites dedicated to traveling en-famille. You don’t have to forgo your love of travel just because you’ve added a couple additional travelers to your family. The Ekies All Senses Resort, a member of the Design Hotels collective, understands this sentiment and has created a Greek oasis for families on vacation with little travelers.

Located on the paradisiacal coastline of Halkidiki, Greece, the Ekies All Senses Resort owned by Alexandra Efstathiadou features 10 eco-luxury suites that encourage children to run free and explore, all the while encouraging adults to do the same. The newer Pine and Evergreen suites designed by Athens-based architectural firm Agarch+ seem to blend into the lush, rustic landscape of fauna and flora. The materials and decor incorporated into the suites, like the hand-laid herringbone stone flooring, are a nod to traditional Greek artisanship alongside modern furnishings, like pieces by Philippe Starck and Achille Castiglioni.

The suites come equipped with cozy loungers, hammocks and private soaking pools. And Alexandra’s mother’s family co-own Coco Mat, a company that produces natural sleep products, bed linens, towels, and furniture, all of which are used throughout the hotel.

Blue accent walls and tiles reflect the waters of the Aegean shores just mere steps away from the property. Illustrations and typography showcasing Greek poet Aesop’s fables adorn the walls of certain suites. There are 69 rooms and suites in total, each with their own pool, sea or garden view and each are unique in terms of color and decorations.

 

Alexandra shares her vision for the property:

” I wanted to display Greek culture but in a modern way. I wanted to create a new way for people to look at the country. It is a place filled with love. In other words, it’s the perfect place to spend with your family and little ones.”

What: The Ekies All Senses Resort
Where: Sithonia, Halkidiki, Vourvourou, 63078
How much:  Rates for the Pine suites start from $264 USD, rates for the Evergreen Suite start from $522 USD.
Highlights: This Greek hotel has all the modern amenities you need to stay more than comfortable while on vacation (we’re going to assume that it won’t be that hard on a beautiful property like this) but is a true escape into paradise with the lush landscaping, scenic views (Mount Itamos is just a drive away) and Greek-influenced interiors.
Design draw: Agarch+ chose materials and decor that give a nod to Greek craftsmanship while also maintaining a contemporary aesthetic with modern furniture and fixtures.

Book it: Visit the Ekies All Senses Resort

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Via Design Milk.

Prinker Introduces Tattoos that Are Pain-Free and Non-Permanent

SketchOn’s Technology Recognized at Finland’s Slush

Launched in 2008 in Helsinki, Finland, Slush is Europe’s largest startup conference, where startup
hopefuls gather to attract investment and share information and anyone interested in startups comes
to discover the next “big thing.” Last year’s Slush, held for two days in November, drew about 1,700 startups,
800 investors, and 16,000 visitors. This startup event has given rise to some of the world’s largest mobile game
creators, including Rovio and Supercell, the creator of “Clash of Clans,” as well as a series of Fintech startups
representing Finland.

Notably, SketchOn, a Korean startup under Samsung Electronics’ in-house venture “C-Lab,” was selected
as one of the top four companies in Slush’s pitching competition last year. Of the 100 companies that pass
the competition’s preliminary round, the top 20 are selected and given a chance to pitch their products.
Among them, four finalists are selected and pitted against each other, with only one winner coming out on top.
Although, SketchOn did not emerge as the winner, it was a strong runner-up, proving that its technology rivals
that of other startups around the world.

 

Harmless, Easy-to-Erase Printed Tattoos

SketchOn has developed “Prinker,” a printer capable of printing images on human skin.
All you need to do is draw the image you want using the Prinker smartphone application and apply Prinker
to the part of your body where you want the image to be, and the image will be printed on your skin,
just like a tattoo. Creating something similar to a tattoo sticker, the biggest advantage of Prinker,
however, is that it poses no risk to human health, as it uses only cosmetics-grade color materials.
It is easy to remove as well, and lasts only about a day, unless you rub it with your hands.

Prinker has applications in a wide range of areas. It can be used at amusement parks, clubs, or stadiums
to replace paper tickets or bracelets, thereby preventing loss and helping preserve the environment.
It can also be used to draw pictures on children’s faces or bodies at amusement parks. Another interesting
application is the printing of QR codes on skin for marketing purposes.

 


CEO Lee Jong-in says that Prinker is not looking to compete in the tattoo industry; he believes that
the tattoo is an art of its own. Rather than replacing existing tattoos, Prinker is targeting those people
who are reluctant to get tattoos, due to the health risks, permanence, and pain involved.
People can enjoy Prinker’s “contemporary tattoos” at festivals, special events, or amusement parks
and then remove them and go back to normal when the fun is over.
There is also a certain “analogue-meets-digital” aspect to the device, in that it prints hand-drawn images.
Lee said, “Tattoo stickers provide a limited number of choices, and can irritate the skin and cause allergic
reactions. Also, the disadvantage of body painting is that it requires professional skill and takes a long time.”

 

Planning to Expand into the Amusement Park, Premium Club, and Sports Markets


SketchOn is expected to begin selling Prinker in earnest this year. Starting in the business-to-business
(B2B) market, the company plans to gradually target the B2C market.
The main target customers in the B2B market include premium clubs, amusement parks, and sports companies.
A version of Prinker designed for the B2C market will be launched in the second half of this year, with a price
around USD 200. With this, SketchOn aims to post sales of USD 4.37 million this year. With the market for
devices designed to print on skin expected to grow from USD 480 million in 2016 to USD 1.15 billion by 2020,
SketchOn has strong growth potential. CEO Lee Jong-in said, “I hope that Prinker will be able to position itself
as a “self-expression tool,” with which people can express themselves through images printed on their bodies.”

I WANT I WANT I WANT I WANT 🙁

 

 

 

 

 

 

New Basketball Court by Pigalle with Nike

 

The Parisian studio Pigalle is behind a new basketball court in Paris sponsored by Nike. This new design replace the first one. After red, yellow and blue colors and geometric shapes, the studio chose gradients on walls and on the ground with geometry. French photographer Alex Penfornis shot this new creation. Even though I not a basketball fan but this is so BEAUTIFUL and I  would die to have one in my own house .. look at the masterpiece in the below slideshow.

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VW New Californian hippies Microbus is Back & Will Hit the Road in 2022



The Microbus is Back

On August 19, Volkswagen announced at the Pebble Beach Concours d’Elegance in California that its electric microbus, the I.D. BUZZ concept car, will go into production. The new microbus will debut in dealerships throughout China, Europe, and North America in 2022, after the compact four-door version arrives.


“After the presentations at the global motor shows in Detroit and Geneva, we received a large number of letters and emails from customers who said, ‘please build this car’,” Volkswagen CEO Dr. Herbert Diess said at the event. Diess explained to attendees that the location of the announcement was deliberately chosen: “The Microbus has long been part of the California lifestyle. Now we’re bringing it back by reinventing it as an electric vehicle.”

New Tech, Classic Style

The production model I.D. BUZZ will feature all of the benefits of electric drive components, including a long wheelbase and lots of interior space. According to a CNET reviewer who drove the bus, its doors open and close automatically, like Tesla’s Model X, and with a 0-60 acceleration in under 5 seconds, it has the speed to match other electric vehicles— not that anyone driving one will be in much of a rush. The battery pack has a range of around 270 miles, on par with the Model X and the Chevy Bolt, and more than the Tesla’s Model S. The nearly flat front of the classic VW microbus will be retained, because the batteries will be mounted in the floor of the vehicle, just as they are in the concept version shown in Detroit in April.

The I.D. BUZZ is designed for multiple purpose: as a passenger vehicle, but also to carry freight just as the classic T2 did. “Along with a minibus version, we’ll also be offering an I.D. BUZZ CARGO variant for zero-emissions delivery of goods,” Volkswagen’s CEO of Commercial Vehicles, Dr. Eckhard Scholz said at the event. “With Level 3 autonomous capability, this is an ideal concept for an electric van, particularly for delivering packages and goods to the inner cities.”


The iconic VW microbus has a long history in America. It began production in 1950, and by the late 1960s had become a symbol of the hippie counterculture, with enough space to transport groups to rallies, concerts, and anyplace else. This new version of the classic retains a lot of this classic style and nostalgia, with maximum space utilization and recognizable elements of the beloved microbus style. The I.D. BUZZ will also incorporate various design ideas from the concept car, including interactive connectivity, multi-variable seating, and highly automated driving. It’s the hippie’s choice for the electric car revolution.

This Piece of Nostalgia From the 1940’s Was Meant to Be a Vision of the Future

The Bike of the Past

Looking back at the past century, people really enjoyed constructing futuristic models of automobiles. It was almost like companies could picture what cars would look like decades to come. But little did we know that bicycles were also being conceptualized far into the future.

It was 1946, and Benjamin Bowden had a spark of inspiration. “Just by sitting down in my office and thinking about it, I said to myself I should select a product that had not been made before,” he stated. As a result, he designed and assembled a bike that he called the Classic, later changing it to the more appropriate name, the Spacelander.

The lightweight Spacelander included a small motor for uphill travel, something that other bikes at that time didn’t have. The bike’s design was also novel in that its design represented what a bicycle twenty years into the future might look like. Ironically, it didn’t go on sale in the U.S. until approximately two decades later.

Although futuristic, the design was quite simple. How a simple pedal bicycle had a steel frame and two wheels, Bowden’s prototype had the same concept, just with more sleek and abstract parts.

Made of fiberglass, this bicycle was designed by Benjamin Bowden, who helped create the Ford Mustang and T-Bird. Fewer than 1,000 Spacelander bicycles were ever produced. (Value: $13,000, courtesy of Toyraygun.com)

When it was finally released on the market, it sold for $90 ($730 in our modern time). Because of this, it wasn’t very popular, and only around 500 were ever produced.

The Bike of the Future

Although Bowden’s bike might look a little strange even for today’s standards, it still gives us a glimpse into the progression of bicycle design over time. Not to say that we don’t still see Schwinns that look pretty similar today in relation to what they looked like several decades ago.

But bike design and function are constantly evolving. Now, the ‘futuristic bike’ of our time could very well be the electric bicycle.

 

I am addicted to everything vintage its my ultimate fetish ! One day I will surely get the baby blue one ! It’s so irresistible for me.

 

 

 

A Venice, California Home Wrapped in Computer Cut Flowers

Located in Venice, California, 4016 Tivoli is a residence that boasts lots of personality with a 3,000 square foot facade of metallic, computer-cut flowers. Reminiscent of Andy Warhol’s oversized flower pattern, the house is the brainchild of Electroland architect Cameron McNall who looked to his California childhood for inspiration. The colorful house was designed for his family as kind of a living experience that reflected his love of art, architecture, and design. The house is clad in Aluminum Composite Material (ACM) that was designed in CAD and cut using CNC technology.

The facade not only brings an art component to its curb appeal, it creates cool light patterns from either side you view it.

The house features four bedrooms (plus a flex room) and four and a half bathrooms, each with a bold tile color. In addition, the home was built to LA’s “Green Building” stands (Calgreen 2013) and includes two high-efficiency heating/cooling units, double-pane thermal low-E windows and doors, LED lights, low VOC paints and adhesives, low-flow toilets, rain barrels, permeable pavers, eco-compliant insulation, and EV vehicle 100-amp Tesla quick-charging capability.

Via Design Milk.

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A Psychedelic and Cartoons Painted Building in Germany


If you go in Braunschweig, Germany, you will probably discover Happy Rizzi, the playful structure created by late pop art american artist James Rizzi in collaboration with architect Konrad Kloster. The different facades are drawn with colorful and psychedelic cartoons very characteristic of the artist’s style. Such a structure strongly contrasts with the authentic surroundings and offers a very joyful and surreal dimension to the town.

 

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The Next Car You Buy Could Be Solar-Powered

POWERED BY THE SUN

 

Panasonic just unveiled an improved solar panel to power cars. The panel will be used for the first solar roof model of the Toyota Prius, the Prius Prime, which is slated for release this year. The new product, called HIT™ Photovoltaic Module for Automobile, will reportedly allow the Prius Prime to be powered by a 180 W solar module, which will recharge the car’s powertrain battery in addition to its 12 V battery. Previous attempts by Toyota to create a solar roof model had managed to generate a mere 50 W — only enough to power vehicle’s fans for air conditioning.

 

According to Toyota, the addition of the solar panel will increase the Prius’ efficiency by up to 10 percent. In ideal conditions, the battery will add 3.5 km (2.2 mi) of electric range.

The solar outfitted Prius is still unavailable in the US since the material used for the solar panels have yet to pass US crash tests. But the manufacturer is already working on a solution.

SOLAR POWERED TESLAS

Not to be left behind, Elon Musk has announced that the Tesla Model 3 will also likely feature this solar roof option. This isn’t surprising, given that Panasonic has been providing solar and battery cells to the car manufacturer.

As Tesla works toward improving their electric vehicles’ performance and reliability, the company’s researchers are also gunning for sophisticated and advanced features such as Autopilot. Tesla hopes to achieve Level 5 autonomy by the end of the year. The company is also poised to enter the ride-sharing market with its own fleet of self-driving cars.

Tesla has shown its commitment to ushering in a new era in energy, both on and off the road, thanks to their recent innovations and initiatives geared towards solar power and energy storage. Now that Toyota is joining in the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy, we can only hope that other car manufacturers will begin making the switch as well.