bbc.com. September 30, 2013. There is growing interest in deep sea mining for minerals and metals, especially around island nations such as the Cook Islands, the Seychelles and Tonga. The Chinese in particular have been investing in deep sea expeditions to investigate the viability of mining manganese nodules, rocks that contain nickel, copper, cobalt, manganese, gold and also valuable rare earth minerals. This work is being done remotely, however if large-scale operations do go ahead they might be simplified by having people continuously on-site at depth, according to Koblick.
Then there are those who see underwater living as a way of preserving our species in the event of an apocalyptic catastrophe. In the event of a disaster that put paid to human life, communities could perform reverse versions of Noah’s ark. With that in mind, Philip Pauley, a futurist and the founder of the London-based visual communications consultancy Pauley, designed the self-sustaining habitat Sub-Biosphere 2. His design includes circular structures that could be floated out to sea and then sunk, creating a haven for 50 to 100 lucky people.
Roz Kaveney – TS Eliot’s The Waste Land: the radical text of a wounded culture
Siegfried Sassoon once wrote a poem complaining about a concert whose audience listened to The Rite of Spring as if it were “by someone dead / like Brahms”, instead of rioting and yelling abuse. Indeed, most of the great works of 20th-century modernism have become part of the canon. People may still occasionally make disobliging remarks about Picasso, say, but we are used to TS Eliot’s The Waste Land – it is assimilated, and no longer regarded as an awful warning of the debased, degenerate way in which things are heading.
Read more: http://www.theguardian.com/waste-land
Stan Alcorn – These Photos Of Tiny, Futuristic Japanese Apartments Show How Micro Micro-Apartments Can Be
www.fastcoexist.com. September, 25, 2013. Micro-apartments have been experiencing a renaissance of late. They represent a seemingly straightforward antidote to persistent affordable housing shortages in dense growing cities: If the rent-per-square-foot is too damn high, why not lower the number of square feet?
In New York City’s headline-grabbing example, apartments from 250 to 370 square feet are being built in the first multi-unit building in Manhattan to use modular construction. New Yorkers were recently allowed to sleep inside a prototype at a museum exhibition, whose director called it “a glimpse into the future of housing in our city.”
The Urban Portal is an online gateway to the latest research, events, and resources in urban social science. With a particular focus on urban research at the University of Chicago and efforts to translate that research for broader audiences, the Urban Portal highlights the urban scholarship of University of Chicago faculty and the many research units on campus. The Urban Portal also contains a current list of workshops and events at the University of Chicago.
To help connect scholars to urban research occurring in other settings, the Urban Portal offers a robust array of tools to assist researchers and students, including a comprehensive list of urban-related datasets; constantly updated reports on new and noteworthy developments in urban research or policy; links to journals; details about conference events worldwide; and other resources of interest to scholars, journalists, and policy makers.
Read more: http://www.urbanportal.org/
moonofsouth.com. Hordes of frustrated residents evicted from buildings and land they have been occupying illegally, mushrooming of squatter camps (slums) on the outskirts of cities, middle-aged men and women sleeping rough at bus and train stations, four or five entire families squeezed in one room or one-bedroom flat, rent increasing every three months as demand outstrips supply, landlords asking up to one year of paid rent in advance in countries such as Ghana, Nigeria and Togo, and rural folks flocking to cities to search for jobs and wondering where to sleep.
These scenes, including many more not included here, are the realities of Africa, a continent in full mutation where UN Habitat says 46 cities are now larger than one million people.
What can be done to deal with this situation? This has become a one-million dollar question on every policymaker and investor’s lips.
adf.ly. Slums sind mehr als Elend. Eine Ausstellung in Winterthur zeigt, wie Menschen in einem besetzten Hochhaus in Venezuela leben.
Kaum fliessend Wasser, kein Strom, ungenügende sanitäre Einrichtungen. Slums assoziieren wir oft nur mit hoffnungsloser Armut. Doch damit machen wir es uns zu einfach. Jeder zweite Mensch weltweit lebt in einer Stadt. Ein Grossteil jener, die vom Land in die Metropolen fliehen, strandet in notdürftigen Unterkünften. Es sind also nicht wenige, sondern viele, die in prekären Verhältnissen hausen. Und: Sie ersticken nicht im Chaos, sondern haben sich organisiert.
Weiter lesen: http://adf.ly/WEwQo