Designer Bryan James is trying to raise awareness and make people care about protecting animals and the environment, through interactive polygon art.
With more natural habitats being exploited for their resources on our planet, many species are in danger of extinction. To draw attention to this issue, designer Bryan James crafted a gorgeous interactive exhibition of 30 fascinating animals facing extinction, using morphing polygons.
In Pieces beautifully depicts rare creatures like the pygmy three-toed sloth, the Somali ostrich, the Brazilian armadillo and Kemp’s Ridley turtle with subtle animations as well as information on the threat to each species, visualized stats and links to preservation efforts to protect them.
Color has a lot of power over how we perceive things, and understanding that can help us understand our evolutionary past, and our future.
Neuroscientist Bevil Conway thinks about color for a living… and in recent years Conway has focused his research almost entirely on the neural machinery behind color.
“I think it’s a very powerful system,” he tells Co.Design, “and it’s completely underexploited.”
Conway’s research into the brain’s color systems has clear value for designers and artists like himself. It stands to reason, after all, that someone who understands how the brain processes color will be able to present it to others in a more effective way. But the neuroscience of color carries larger implications for the rest of us. In fact, Conway thinks his insights into color processing may ultimately shed light on some fundamental questions about human cognition.
Step back for a moment to one of Conway’s biggest findings, which came while examining how monkeys process color. Using a brain scanner, he and some collaborators found “globs” of specialized cells that detect distinct hues–suggesting that some areas of the primate brain are encoded for color. Interestingly, not all colors are given equal glob treatment. The largest neuron cluster was tuned to red, followed by green then blue; a small cell collection also cared about yellow.
Knowing that humans might also be hardwired for certain hues could be a gateway into understanding the neural properties of emotion. Since researchers know that certain colors provoke strong feelings in people–blues and purples are more pleasant than yellows, for instance, while greens tend to be the most arousing–they might then work backwards to uncover the basic mechanisms for these feelings. (Designers, meanwhile, could use these emotional connections to help them match color schemes to the mood of a room or a brand or a website.)
My grandfather used to write me letters in pictograms, so using a sheep (ewe) when asking “how are you?” This sort of reminds me of that, but way more complicated.
Which GIF better expresses happiness? This one of Ren and Stimpy bouncing up and down, or this one of Lost’s John Locke grinning with an orange slice in his mouth? Does your opinion change if Grumpy Cat is added in? These seemingly trivial questions about how you perceive animated GIFs is the central task of GIFGIF, a project from MIT Media lab that isn’t just a fun web game, but a first step toward building up a universal library of non-verbal communication.
GIFGIF was born out of a series of conversations over the watercooler at MIT between Kevin Hu, a first year master’s student studying data visualization and network analysis, and Travis Rich, a first year PhD student with a background in electric engineering. Although Hu and Rich don’t have the same credentials, they were both fascinated by the power of non-verbal communication.
Great TED Talk from Janet Echelman about how resourcefulness and imagination has given her a career in sculpting, and is a great example of how the collaboration of art and science can create great things:
Using nature as an inspiration for architectural structures often creates some amazing designs, and this is no exception:
The astonishing Times Eureka Pavilion at the Chelsea Flower Show takes us deep into the structure of a leaf with its biomimetic design. The newly completed pavilion is set amidst a bounty of flowing plants, and it takes structural cues from the intricate growing patterns of leaves. Marcus Barnett Landscape Architects created the “veins” out of sustainably harvested spruce and inserted plastic “cells” into the pavilion to bring visitors into the foliage to experience the textural composition of plants. Read on for a closer look at this stunning project!
The brain is such an amazing organ, and has such amazing capabilities to recover, it just needs the right tools; in this case, using a sensory glove to play video games as a type of mental and physical therapy for stroke victims. I think it’s a stretch to say this glove will become the next thing in fashion, but I’m pleased that even a fashion blog like Ecouterre (where I originally saw this story) can appreciate the combination of science and design in order to pull this off:
Four mechanical-engineering students at McGill University in Canada have developed an inexpensive sensor glove that allows patients to exercise in a game-like fashion at home with minimal supervision… Using the accompanying software, doctors will be able to monitor their charges’ progress off-site, cutting down on hospital visits and costs.
The added benefit of remote monitoring for doctors is also good for the patient, as the doctor can respond right away if they see something wrong or can provide immediate feedback, rather than having to schedule an appointment, travel to the doctor’s office, and have all of your questions answered, all of this being extra hard after you’ve had a stroke and need others to help transport you.