1. Hold a Piece of the Sun, Here on Earth
If you need a little inspiration, look no further: humans have managed to collect a tiny piece of the sun, and bring it back to Earth. Even more amazingly, this happened 15 years ago, when “charged particles shot out into space from the Sun’s upper atmosphere.” Usually they’d disappear into the solar system, but a spacecraft named Genesis was there to collect them. Now, these particles of solar wind live at Houston’s Johnson Space Center. Read all about Genesis’ spectacular and tumultuous journey at LiveScience.
2. New Public Statue in NYC Has Feminist Statement
In an attempt to encourage companies to take notice and action against gender inequality, a new bronze sculpture has been unveiled at NYC’s Wall St. Now facing the well-known “Charging Bull” statue is a small girl, standing defiantly with her hands on her hips, in opposition to the giant creature. Created by artist Kristen Visbal, the new statue draws attention to the fact that along with pay inequality, there simply aren’t enough women in the top ranks of many companies. According to the BBC, a staggering “one in four of the 3,000 largest traded US companies do not have even one woman on their board.” Read more at the BBC.
3. Ceramic Gramophone Bluetooth Speaker
We frequently see industrial designers look to the past for inspiration, often digging up historic bits for a nostalgic effect. Rarely is it as refreshing or direct as Paolo Cappello Design’s new ceramic Bluetooth table speakers, fashioned after a gramophone horn. In three matte and two reflective colorways (as well as 24K gold), the speaker pairs with everything from iOS and Android to Windows and Linux. It’s been designed for Italian retailer Newblack, and produced by hand in the town of Nove. And, as is expected from music consumers today, the sound has been optimized for peak performance.
4. Nike’s “Pro Hijab” for Muslim Athletes
Sportswear giant Nike announced this week that, come spring 2018, the “Pro Hijab” will be available. Made for Muslim women, the hijab has been specifically designed for sports—it’s light, stretchy (so it will stay put) and is covered in tiny holes—making it more breathable. For such a recognizable, global brand like Nike, the hijab is much more than a way to make money. By shining a spotlight on Muslim athletes; making them visible, and creating products specifically for them—all this will hopefully help make Muslim women feel seen, validated and welcome. Read more at the New York Times.
5. “Plan Bee” Drone Pollinators
The impact of our global bee population is undeniable—from pollinating crops and wildflowers to producing honey. To draw awareness to the current bee crisis, industrial designer Anna Haldewag has imagined an alternative and produced a prototype. The “Plan Bee” is a self-sustaining drone, mimicking the shape of a flower and the color patterns of a bee. It’s able to pull pollen up from one flower and disperse it onto another—a camera on its underside alerts the device of flowers. This is a new cross-pollination system that could prove quite effective, but again, we must do everything in our power to preserve the honeybee while it’s still possible.
6. An Entire House 3D-Printed in One Day
A quick, affordable solution to escalating housing construction costs, Apis Cor’s 3D-printing system actually prints an entire small home out of concrete in under 24 hours. The SF-based start-up recently tested the process in Russia, delivering a 400-square-foot house. Of course, not all of it can be done through 3D-printing, and contractors finalize the structure by installing insulation, a roof, windows and a door—the latter two items being the most expensive. All-in-all this type of home costs about $10K. Structures like these can easily be useful in cities coping with a housing crises, uncontrollable cost increases or even areas afflicted with damages from a natural disaster.
7. Analyzing The Music Industry’s One-Hit Wonder
Through consideration of everything from society’s obsession with novelty to the well-known curse of the second album, High Snobiety writer Aleks Eror poses an in-depth analysis of the one-hit wonder. With stunning facts, “nearly half of all musicians that created a chart hit in the half-century in between 1955 and 2005 never did so again,” and a thoughtful approach to marketing, originality and the zeitgeist, Eror explains that the one-hit wonder of the music world is very much the viral video of today—something for passing entertainment. But there’s so much more. Head over to HighSnob for the full feature.
8. Google Doodle For International Women’s Day 2017
In celebration of International Women’s Day, the Google Doodle was a grandmother telling her grandchild a bedtime story about some of history’s pioneering women from all over the world. Some were easily recognizable (for instance Frida Kahlo and Ida Wells) while others less so. There’s Egypt’s first woman pilot Lotifa El Nadi who rebelled against her father and worked at a flying school in exchange for lessons; Turkish archaeologist Halet Cambel who not only was the first Muslim woman to compete in the Olympics but also refused to meet Adolf Hitler; and Lee Tai-Young who was Korea’s first female lawyer, first female judge and founded the first first legal aid center—she went on to advocate for human rights all over the world. This list of women is 13 long and truly inspirational.