If you have not been tracking the progress of the Oroville dam spillway repair project, the scale of the effort has been impressive. Since the collapse of a portion of the main spillway two winters ago. The California Department of Water Resources has been capturing progress through compelling videos. Its inspiring to see projects of this magnitude taking place in the United States today accompanied by a great safety record.
Today's ride sharing services use vehicles that never designed with this form of mobility in mind. Designing for choice will be a key challenge for those creating vehicles optimized for ride and car sharing services in the years to come. Passengers may choose to work, converse, be entertained or just relax and restore themselves with some private time. All of this is what IDEO has explored in chapter four of its Future of Automobility point of view. Noise canceling or conversation enhancing technologies contained in seat "halos" could help passengers have easier conversations, enjoy media or opt out for tranquil time. Its an exciting time to consider all the needs one must design for when creating something for the new on-demand and shared mobility market.
It was nice to see Dwell inquiring at to possible futures of mobility and the workplace in their recent printed issue. The range of responses include thinking along the lines of what is in IDEO's Slow Becomes Fast flexible interiors concept and Inverse Commute Work on Wheels concept from its Future of Automobility provocation series.
With Connected, Autonomous, Shared and Electric vehicles on the horizon, the gig economy and the sharing economy may well intertwine in interesting new ways.
Imagine accessing a shared vehicle for a few hours and paying for that time by running an errand for the vehicle owner. By picking up their groceries and placing them in a cooled storage area, everyone benefits. Mobility is gained and money saved by the vehicle borrower and time is saved for the vehicle owner. Vehicle utilization goes up as well.
As envisioned in IDEO's Future of Automobility provocation series, accessible heated and cooled storage spaces could enable a range of new on-demand services.
For more see the Moving Together section of IDEO's Future of Automobility provocation.
Apparently form can follow function and still be cute as well. Equipped with ADAS features and greater visibility, these electric trucks with a range of around 150 miles should serve London and Paris well. Take a closer look over at Quartz via the link below.
Has Boston Dynamics solved the vexing "last staircase" challenge facing the on-demand delivery industry? Take a look at the latest videos of Atlas and SpotMini in action and decide for yourself.
Still serving as an inspiration today for those hoping that the human race will someday venture beyond the orbit of our moon to other planets and beyond, the Apollo program is still unsurpassed in it scope and audaciousness. From its inception and from the very moment that President John F. Kennedy declared that America should set out on the grand adventure of setting a man on the moon and safely returning him to earth, the program was marked by boldness. Recently, the bivouac grew in appreciation of the effort after acquiring and putting together a lego version of the rocket. The size of the astronauts in comparison to the rocket reminds one of just how daunting the program must have felt at times for the tens of thousand of citizens who contributed to the accomplishment.
It fantastic to see the challenge of space travel being taken up once again with the likes of Elon Musk's SpaceX group. Below is a nice clip showing various space vehicles all rendered on pad 39-A for side by side comparison.
There is something very striking about viewing objects in an exploded or x-ray view. One has the sense that you are being invited into a secret world allowing for the way in which an object is made to be readily seen.
This "cutaway" mockup of a 2018 Jeep Wrangler Rubicon Unlimited four door model is a nice example of this. It gives viewer a sense of improvements made to the new model. This kind of transparency is interesting to see especially for objects as complicated to manufacture as automobiles.
Given the bivouac's interest in alternative futures, it is great to see more sophisticated provocations represented in videos like "One Hundred Hunters" from Nigel Stanford.
With it's masterful mixture of new and authentic retro footage from NASA, the combined story telling helps fire the imagination. After all, there are so many questions as to why we have not been back to the moon since 1972...or perhaps we have?
The Rolex GMT-Master II is a superlative time piece. This remarkable piece of human engineering and mechanical artistry inspires. Rolex has a time-honored tradition of honing their products, refining each subsequent edition with both subtle and dramatic technical advancements. Take a closer look at the bezel production process and one's appreciation for these masterpieces is sure to grow. Few products manage to balance technical appeal while blending in to formal contexts as well as this time piece does. Established in 1905, the bivouac is looking forward to what the next 113 years brings from the company.
How they did it: It is remarkable to see from viewing the video below just how much innovation goes into signature elements on the GMTII including a proprietary ceramic bezel manufacturing process.
Future User Interfaces (or FUIs) have been all the buzz here lately at the bivouac. This got me thinking about how my interest in FUIs and things like "science faction"Read More
This recent IIHS crash test footage is scary stuff and good to keep in mind the next time find yourself following a semi truck. Why not back off just a bit? Oh yeah, and while you are at it, write the makers of Manac/Trailmobile and thank them for desiging and producing proper trailer underride crash components.
Todd McLelllan's new book "Things Come Apart" sets itself apart with photos of classic objects which have been disassembled and photographed as masterful compositions. In the digital age, McLellan's work serves as a poetic reminder of all that goes into the objects that play a part...big or small...in our every day lives.
An earlier bivouac post spoke to the merit of building items with Lego Technic. Depending on the kit, one can gain an real appreciation for certain mechanical relationships within drive trains, limited slip differrentials, pistons and cam shafts and the like. It turns out that a recent encounter with Lego's Architecture series had a similar effect, leading to renewed appreciation for Mies van der Rohe's iconic Farnsworth House.
While not as resilient to the 2008 flooding event as a Lego version would have been, hopefully the master architect's minimalist selection of travertine marble, glass and steel will mean that any further restoration can mainly focus on the more precious interior such as silk curtains and an interior core element clad in primivera paneling.
Farnsworth House stands as a testiment to simplicity and minimalism. As I struggled during my "construction project" to keep each individual Lego tile as perpendicular to one another as I could, the exercise proved to be poignient reminder that sometimes keeping things pure and simple is really hard.