Wednesday, September 10, 2008



Next Generation House is a small housing module for weekend use, located on the edge of a forest overlooking the River Kuma at Kumakura, opposite the temple of Shibatatehime.

The client is a timber merchant. The small pavilion, a 4x4 m cube, is made by assembling solid Japanese cedar blocks kept in place by their own weight and connecting metal cables running through vertical drill holes. Some of the inside cubes are laid off-centre to create shelves, small living areas and even steps to move from one level to another.

Offsets in the wall cubes also create windows with views of the surrounding countryside. The oblique glass windowpanes are held in place with plastic plugs. The mobile sheets are in transparent acrylic. Two roof skylights provide extra natural light – an architectural feature over which Fujimoto takes special care. At night, artificial light visible from the outside helps to dematerialise the cube by mixing the warm tones of wood with the amber glow of incandescent bulbs, emphasising the ways in which a structure made up of heavy wooden elements can seem so light and airy.

Sou Fujimoto (Japan, 1971) architect. He lives in Tokyo, Japan. His children’s mental health centre won an AR Award in 2006. He has taught in several Japanese universities. In addition to his work as an architect, he writes for international magazines like A+U. He is currently working on a series of housing projects: House N, Tokyo Apartment and the Future Primitive House.

He had a pretty interesting start at the ripe age of 20. Worthe a quick read HERE.

Let's go throw the proton around...

Over at DVICE, they've got 30 stunning images of the Large Hadron Collider. Judging by a quick summize of Twitter, we're all alive and (still) cracking jokes, albeit poorly written ones.

Be careful not to step in any strange matter.

String cheese theory and hard-on jokes seem to be especially popular.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

It's raining regulatory code, hallelujah...

Catching rain water is against the law

August 12th, 2008 @ 11:49pm
By John Hollenhorst

Who owns the rain? Not you, it turns out. You're actually breaking the law if you capture the rain falling on your roof and pour it on your flower bed! A prominent Utah car dealer found that out when he tried to do something good for the environment.

Rebecca Nelson captures rainwater in a barrel, and she pours it on her plants. "We can fill up a barrel in one rainstorm. And so it seems a waste to just let it fall into the gravel," she said.

Car dealer Mark Miller wanted to do pretty much the same thing on a bigger scale. He collects rainwater on the roof of his new building, stores it in a cistern and hopes to clean cars with it in a new, water-efficient car wash. But without a valid water right, state officials say he can't legally divert rainwater. "I was surprised. We thought it was our water," Miller said.

State officials say it's an old legal concept to protect people who do have water rights. Boyd Clayton, the deputy state engineer, said, "Obviously if you use the water upstream, it won't be there for the person to use it downstream."

"Utah's the second driest state in the nation. Our water laws ought to catch up with that," Miller says.

Read the rest of the story HERE.