Tuesday, May 13, 2008


Local River, home storage unit for fish and greens

The Locavores appeared in San Francisco in 2005 and define themselves as ‘a group of culinary adventurers who eat foods produced in a radius of 100 miles (160 km) around their city’. By doing so they aim to reduce impact on the environment inherent to the transport of foodstuffs, while ensuring their traceability.

Local River anticipates the growing influence of this group (the word ‘locavore’ made its first appearance in an American dictionary in 2007) by proposing a home storage unit for live freshwater fish combined with a mini vegetable patch. This DIY fish-farm-cum-kitchen-garden is based on the principle of aquaponics coupled with the exchange and interdependence of two living organisms - plants and fish.

The plants extract nutrients from the nitrate-rich dejecta of the fish. In doing so they act as a natural filter that purifies the water and maintains a vital balance for the eco-system in which the fish live. The same technique is used on large-scale pioneer aquaponics/fish-farms, which raise tilapia (a food fish from the Far East) and lettuce planted in trays floating on the surface of ponds.

Local River responds to everyday needs for fresh food that is 100% traceable. It bets on a return to favour of farm-raised freshwater fish (trout, eel, perch, carp, etc…), given the dwindling supplies of many saltwater species due to over-fishing. It also demonstrates the capacity of fish-farmers to deliver their stock live to a private consumer as a guarantee of optimum freshness - impossible in the case of saltwater fish that has been netted.

Local River aims to replace the decorative ‘TV aquarium’ by an equally decorative but also functional ‘refrigerator-aquarium’. In this scenario, fish and greens cohabit for a short time in a home storage unit before being eaten by their keepers, the end-players in an exchange cycle within a controlled ecosystem.

[+ website]

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Friday, May 09, 2008


We've all heard of high-level advertising but now Flogos has created flying logos. The cloud-like logos are the idea of Francisco Guerra of SnowMasters, a special effects company that specializes in creating snow and foam.

Made of helium and soap (the company promises they are environmentally friendly), a Flogo generator (think big, complicated bubble machine) pushes the bubbly creation through a stencil that gives it the desired look. Flogos can be molded into any form and you can see some examples on the company's website.

[+ website]

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Thursday, May 08, 2008


In some of Manhattan's better Japanese-staffed bars, like Tribeca's underground B-Flat, ice cubes are noticeably absent; ordering your scotch on the rocks gets you a large ice sphere. With less surface area than the same amount of ice rendered in cubes, a globe of ice will melt more slowly, keeping your drink cold without making it watery.

As an industrial designer, your correspondent couldn't help but notice the parting line on B-Flat's ice spheres; after all, it has to come out of a mold. But now a company called Taisin has come up with a clever device for making a perfect ice sphere with no parting line.

How does it work? You sandwich a large chunk of ice in between the two metal pieces pictured above. As the ice slowly melts, gravity brings the top half to close over the bottom half, enclosing what ice remains in its spherical cavity. Because the ice is in the process of melting into its new shape as the top closes, there's no parting line. Clever!

[+ website]
via core77

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