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SpaceX will fly four civilians into space later this year | Engadget Read more

Monday 22nd February 2021
SpaceX will fly four civilians into space later this year | Engadget

https://www.engadget.com/spacex-inspiration4-annoucement-225202675.html

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Design



African urbanization

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It is widely predicted that the future of many African nations will be urbanization with the population moving to cities from the rural communities that they currently reside in.

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An Architect's school by Tadao Ando

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In 2013, Tadao Ando, the celebrated Japanese Architect, created a new art, design and architecture school for the University of Monterrey in Mexico.

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The Trailer Home reinvented

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Invisible Studi have developed an affordable "house" using locally sourced timber and construction waste. The structure is relocatable using a trailer.

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Amazing glass art

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We recently visited the Seattle Center in Washington State, USA and the long term glass art exhibition at the Chihuly Garden and Glass. Wow!

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Sustainable Community Housing that makes a difference

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In these times of housing crisis for most developing regions, there is also a similar challenge to provide affordable housing in more developed countries as the affordability gap stretches first time buyers or low income families.

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London's new pavillion

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The folding structure sails over simple glazing to create an elegant sculpture in the heart of London's business centre.

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Cool stuff


Architecture that sings

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Palassis Architects have crafted this exquisite sculptural architecture for the St.Georges Cathedral choir at the Cadogan Song School in Perth, Australia.

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A contemporary Gaudi?

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Located on the Vejle Fjord, Havneøen is a Gaudi styled building.

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Glass architecture

Life


Cure for depression

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For almost 20 years, international scientists have been focussing research to find a genetic link that could cause depression following the widely known evidence that the disease is hereditary.

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How to sleep better

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We are all looking for that great night of sleep and there are countless studies and recommendations out there telling us what we should be aiming for.

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Learn to play an instrument?

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Ever needed a reason to learn to play an instrument?

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A clusterfuck?

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Your boss is ranting again but in the absence of a device to "google" on, you are unable to derive what it means when the boss shouts "clusterfuck," or a "SNAFU" or "shitshow!"

But don't worry because help is at hand. Corinne Purtill's article in Quartz at Work, explains just the boss is ranting about.

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what could be more relaxing than sitting down with a pot of perfectly brewed Yorkshire tea and freshly baked scones…

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Personal reboots Experiences from the Rebootme team

Will - living with ADHD

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Somewhere during the process of discovering that Will has a poor working memory and ADHD, we actually sat down and asked Will what he thought that he struggled with, both in and out of school.

From the heart

Personal journey

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Four simple life style changes can help keep your brain healthy and functioning in to your older years.

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Did you know that a healthy diet could help save our planet? You could reduce the amount of water resources you personally consume by up to 55% if you just changed your diet.

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Nelson Dellis, is a Memory Grandmaster, and he was inspired by his Grandmother's sickness to beat memory loss and to improve his memory overall.

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Chocolate grows on trees...you knew that, right?

Chocolate is made from cacao seeds that have been roasted and ground and then produced in liquid, paste or as a block that most of us love to eat or to use as a flavouring.

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Our Planet


Climate Change News

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Trying to simply clean up our plastic waste and pollution is not enough. One group, led by Ellen MacArthur, are working hard to change attitudes…

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In a direct response to the many letters they have received from children, Lego have committed to phasing out the single-use plastic bags used in their boxes in 2021 and replacing them with more sustainable recyclable paper bags.

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Climate Change Effects

  • Shanghai pollution
  • Wildfire in Australia, 2019
  • US Flooding, 2019
  • NASA Artic Ice

The impact of COVID19 on our environment (NASA)

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NO2 from March 15-April 15 time series in southeastern US

NASA

Media

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66 tons per second...of food waste !

New study finds food waste will increase to 66 tons per second if left unchecked.

We need to act

A recent study suggests that by 2030, food waste could increase by 30% across the world if we don't change approach.

Presented a different way, 2.1 billion tons of food could be wasted or 66 tons every second

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We need to think differently about our marine environments

The International Community have designated parts of our seas, oceans, estuaries and large lakes as "Marine Protected Areas."

The concept is to promote conservation in these areas to protect these important resources and can include wildlife refuges or research facilities. The Marine Protected Areas (MPA) are protected and legislated by regional authorities around the world.

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Can air pollution affect our intelligence?

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Researchers for a joint Chinese-US study have explored the impact of air pollution on human intelligence.

The study, over four years, tested the maths and speaking aptitude of 20,000 Chinese people and the results suggest a link but are not yet conclusive.

The research focussed on measuring levels of sulphur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and particulates smaller than 10 micrometres in diameter in samples of air but did not identify which of these were the cause.

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Scientific evidence for warming of the climate system is unequivocal.

Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change

Emissions in China have been decreasing over the last four years, but the severe winter haze is not getting better. Mostly, that’s because of a very rapid change in the high polar regions where sea ice is decreasing and snowfall is increasing. This perturbation keeps cold air from getting into the eastern parts of China where it would flush out the air pollution.

Yuhang Wang, Professor School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences at Georgia Tech

Environmental Change

think differently

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The Great Pacific Garbage Patch

There are five areas in the world's oceans that have accumulated vast quantities of garbage in the form of waste plastics.

One of these areas is in the Pacific Ocean, in-between Hawaii and California. Covering 1.6 million square kilometers, this is the largest problem and is now termed,

"The Great Pacific Garbage Patch." (GPGP)

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Waste recovery on a floating bike

Since 2017, one man is trying to make a difference in London on a floating bike !

Thousands of kilograms of plastic waste

A former management consultant, Dhruv Boruah is taking on the waste that ends up in the River Thames in London by floating along and collecting the plastic from the local canals.

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A new way to reduce greenhouse gas

A laboratory in Ontario is developing a new way to reduce greenhouse gas.

Carbon Dioxide (CO2) capture is now possible using a new carbon powder created by chemical engineers at the University of Waterloo, Canada.

Why should we care?

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Wind power on Mars

Researchers from the Centre of Space Physics (Boston University) are close to harnessing wind power on Mars.

Testing has been carried out at the Aarhus Wind Tunnel Simulator II (Aarhus University, Denmark) - to simulate the extreme conditions found on the red planet - the fourth planet from the sun.




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Sustainable flood protection

NOAQ, a Swedish Company have innovated with a sustainable solution to combat an increasingly common natural disaster.

There is evidence to suggest that the effects of global warming are one the causes of increased flooding of our rivers, which are regularly having a major impact on our communities.

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Have you ever bought something and then it just breaks for no reason at all?

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Technology


Technology news

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Ten Fold Engineering have developed a unique counterbalanced lever system that can be used to assemble large collapsible structures

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R2D2 is real!

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We all know and love the droids from Star Wars, including R2D2 and C3PO but now technology has caught up with science fiction!

A "flying brain" is on board the International Space Station. The "droid," called CIMON is able to float on command and uses AI to provide technical assistance to the astronauts.

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An insect orchestra

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Marguerite Tricaud is an Artist and Engineer with a fascination for musical improvisation - Sound Insects

Her work includes this experimental installation of digital "insects" that react and respond to each other through the noises they make.

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Micro robots are the new mechanics

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The future aeronautical mechanics will be micro robots that will assess and maintain our aeroplane engines.

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Magnetic North is on the move!

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The location of the World Magnetic North has changed…and it’s moving quicker than before.

The Earth’s magnetosphere, a protective magnetic bubble does not align with the Earth’s rotational spin so together they create a dynamo effect. We call the centre of this the “geomagnetic” north point.

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Science and Technology

technology

…imagine if your skin could monitor your health?

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technology

Do we want the risk? The image shows the Russian 70-megawatt "Academik Lomonosov" that will be towed from the Baltic Sea past Norway to Murmansk.

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technology

A research team from Bar-Ilan University's Institute of Nanotechnology and Advanced Materials (BINA) have innovated "Nano-Drops," which in the future, could correct impaired vision and replace spectacles and contact lenses.

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Travel


Travel News The Electric Vehicle Revolution

inspiration


Overlanding in an ambulance

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We continue our Cool Way to Travel series where we profile some cool conversions of everyday vehicles in to overlanding rigs...

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Florence - a Renaissance City

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We recently visited Florence in Italy - the birthplace of the Renaissance Movement. A beautiful City, rich in culture and history.

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How to shoot great photos

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I don't know about you but the days of forgetting to take my camera with me, leaving the lens cap on, or let's face it, missing the shot because I couldn't be bothered to set it up, are long gone. Now, I simply grab my smartphone and happily shoot, share and delete away.

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...in the Bermuda Triangle

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Devil's Triangle, commonly known as the Bermuda Triangle lies between the island of Bermuda, Puerto Rico and the southern part of Florida, USA.

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Personal reboots Experiences from the Rebootme team

inspiration

How Toyota and Maxtrax saved me!

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  • Some time ago, I found myself making the 8 hour round trip to a small town in Northern Alberta in order to hand deliver a bid to a Client and the clock was ticking. In order for it to be considered in the competitive process, I had to get it there by 2pm that day.

  • The weather was typical January for Alberta. There had been a fresh snowfall the night before and the roads were clear and in the most dry, thankfully. However it was cold with temperatures around -26 degC. You soon learn that you need to take precautions to be safe, when travelling in this part of the world. I had cold weather clothing, water, food, a sleeping bag and first aid kit. I was also travelling in a 2017 Toyota 4Runner TRD off road with winter rated tyres. A very capable machine with significant off road capabilities.

    The drive had been uneventful and I was only 50km away from my ultimate destination when I rounded a corner to be met with a snow plough clearing the other side of the road. Again, this is a common sight in Alberta and I reacted as normal by slowing down and making sure I gave the plough enough room as I passed.

    Snow ploughs never change their course…

  • As I passed I was constantly judging the distance between my vehicle and the spraying snow from the plough. I was also subconsciously aware that there was built up snow at the side of the road on my side and concluded that the plough must have already cleared that side.

    And that’s when it happened…

    The front wheel of the 4Runner started to get caught up in the new soft snow at the road’s edge, it must have been between 8-12” in depth; and I could feel the vehicle getting pulled that way. I gently corrected the steering to bring the wheel back to the road but as I did, I could feel that the vehicle’s rear end would then get pulled around and could roll over.I did apparently, what you’re supposed to do and instead of fighting the momentum I straightened up and steered off the road in the ditch!

    In the ditch…


    Stopping wasn’t difficult in the deep drainage ditch as the soft snow provided a cushioned mass to take away the momentum. As the 4Runner stopped I took in my surroundings and noticed that the plough was nowhere to be seen and the road was empty.

  • So I am now in a deep ditch in virgin snow with no one around and furthermore a commercial bid to be deliver some 50km away…...but I am in a very capable off road ready vehicle so all is not lost…yet.

    I engaged low range 4WD and with the deep tread of my BF Goodrich tyres I immediately moved forward through the deep snow. I decided to take a gentle angled approach to get back on the road up the sloped side of the ditch and made some headway but unfortunately the snow could not hold the weight of the vehicle and I started to tip over. I reversed and tried again on a new section of the slope but with the same results. In the end I drove back to the ditch bottom and reassessed.

    My bid is still sitting next to me and the time is ticking to the deadline…



    I could see, further along the ditch, a road crossing to an abandoned property and I decided to drive to the end to get on to this narrow track first before returning to the highway. The 4Runner had no problems driving through the snow and I accelerated as I approached the track’s sloping sides and made it...almost.The vehicle was now full length on the slope to the track at an angle of around 25 degrees and so, so close to making it to the track’s edge. However the more the wheels rotated, the more the vehicle dug in and I know when that starts to happen, you stop!

    Once again I reversed the 4Runner to take a new run at the slope (it looked so easy to climb from behind the wheel!) but this time I engaged the electronic off road traction aids built in to the vehicle where you can select terrain and control the speed of your ascent (or descent) using a dial.Again so close but with the narrow ditch, steeper sides alongside the track and the soft snow, the vehicle just dug in again and again…

    To the rescue…!



    I was now out of the vehicle walking in the deep snow and taking a closer look at the dug in wheels on the passenger side. I had tried just about everything I had at my disposal mechanically to get myself out and my last option was to deploy my MAXTRAX traction mats (MAXTRAX).I had never used these until now and they were purchased as a safety device for when I go overlanding (see my other posts), not for delivering bid documents at work!

  • I took the pair of mats and inserted them in front of both the tyres, spanning the deep holes the wheels had created. I then got back in the vehicle, turned off the electronic traction aids and with the vehicle in 4 low, drove forward. I made more progress this time but as the wheels fought to grip the rigid teeth of the mats they lost momentum and the boards slid away. I reversed, repositioned the MaxTrax back under the wheels and then gunned the engine and hit the mats hard and “fast” and…

    Success!


    ...the 4Runner shot up the slope and mounted the narrow track. I had to hit the brakes hard to stop the vehicle going straight over the other side and then was able to reverse carefully back on to the highway.In remembering the event it seems a lot happened in a short space of time as it only took me 20 minutes to get myself out and back on the road but I was lucky. I had a capably off road vehicle, the right tyres and recovery traction mats and with that combination only was able to recover myself.

    The consequence would have been to sit it out at the side of the road and wait for a passerby on a quiet road in deep country in -26degC temperatures. It could have gone wrong, very wrong and I could have rolled the vehicle and not be here now writing this blog.

    If you’re still curious, I was able to get my bid delivered and we won!

    Thanks goes to Toyota for making a great vehicle and a major shout out to MAXTRAX for producing a fantastic product - a life saver!

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A good sized Root Top Tent (RTT) is awkward to manoeuvre and can be heavy to lift. The following shows a sequence I use to secure an ARB Simpson III RTT on a Toyota 4Runner.

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We travel by bus

We continue our Cool Ways to Travel series where we profile some cool conversions of everyday vehicles in to overlanding rigs...

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We travel by bus

NASA have been developing a new super quiet, supersonic jet.

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We travel by bus

This passenger train emits water...

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We travel by bus

Elon Musk and Richard Branson are taking us underground in their hyperloops but Uber is taking autonomous vehicles to the skies with their concept for flying taxis.

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Overlanding adventure

Overlanding describes self-reliant adventure travel to remote destinations where the journey is the primary goal. Typically, but not exclusively, accommodated by mechanized off-highway capable transport (from bicycles to trucks) where the principal form of lodging is camping; often lasting for extended lengths of time (months to years) and often spanning international boundaries. While expedition is defined as a journey with a purpose, overlanding sees the journey as the purpose.

Overland Journal
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