Evapotrons are devices used at Burning Man to evaporate grey water quickly and efficiently (and they look pretty damn cool!). A tray is filled with grey water and a drum runs over it which is covered by a dark absorbent material. This drum is constantly driven round by the wind. The absorbed water evaporates from the dark material at a much faster rate than if it were just sitting in the trough.
The website explains this process more thoroughly as well as providing information about the history and development of evapotrons over the years.
The drinkpeedrinkpeedrinkpee project by Submersible Design details a novel way to extract the Nitrogen from urine in order to create fertiliser for plants. The process also has the added bonus of not overfeeding the marine environment which is a direct result of flushing urine directly into the sewers.
The Fin’s Labyrinth is a project by Stewart HICKS and Allison NEWMEYER from Design with Company which just won Suckerpunchdaily‘s competition to imagine a Center for Urban Farming.
This theoretical project titled “Fin’s Labyrinth” encourages inhabitants of a city to “play with their food”. According to the authors, it acts “both as working fish farm and a new form of public (civic) amenity. It uses the infrastructure for raising fish as a backdrop to a wide range of activities designed to entertain you while getting you acquainted with your next meal. It reintroduces the production of food into the daily lives of city dwellers, making a more concrete connection between what we put in our mouths and the environment required to generate it.”
A few months ago, Mark Zuckerberg, the famous co-founder of Facebook declared that he will “only eat meat that he killed.” He justified this personal challenge by saying “I think many people forget that a living being has to die for you to eat meat […] so my goal revolves around not letting myself forget that and being thankful for what I have.” Under the tutelage of a chef, Zuckerberg visits local farms and cut the throat of animals with a knife, which is “the most kind way to do it”.
The Fin’s labyrinth and Zuckerberg’s latest “challenge” reveals a growing discomfort for what cannot be seen in the city while being inherent to its functioning: An intense violence was necessary to kill the animal yet one can buy its pieces packaged from the supermarket just like cereals. This imbalance could be solved in myriads of Architectural proposals. One could imagine a supermarket where you can hunt for food, with forests entering the white cold aisles. Who knows, maybe this might help reducing crime by helping people release their inner violence hence killing two bird with one stone. [:)]
Toby and I would like to encourage these “closed-loop” or “self-reliant” systems where very little is needed from the outside to make the program work…