Monthly Archives: January 2013
Once there was a person named Michael Yu. He was a samurai who fought wolves. One day, he founded the biggest wolf he ever saw in his LIFE. HO MAN. He took out his sword and swung at the beast. BUT MAN! WAS HE TOO SLOW. The wolf bit his arm OFF. ouchhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh. He bled. But he endured it.
Because he was Michael Yu.
He used his other arm to punch the wolf super hard until it barfed out his arm. He manually put his arm back on, and then it grew back instantaneously.
Because he was Michael Yu.
He took out another sword from his pants and began charging up his chi. The wolf got scared. It hurriedly retreated away. BUT MICHAEL YU WOULD NOT FORGIVE THE WOLF. HE SPRINTED TO IT, AND BIT HIS ARM OFF.
Because he was Michael Yu.
See Michael Yu’s blog page at http://michaelyu19950425.wordpress.com/about/
The singularity is when technology will advance so quickly that it will be able to surpass human intelligence. This means that robots will be able to think for us; create its own technology to surpass humans altogether. It’ll be like a machine to do your homework! Amazing…
But is this a good thing?At the rate at which technology is advancing right now, newborn humans will someday not be able to comprehend how we, the creators of the technologies, created what we created. As a result, they won’t be able to develop any technology beyond what is already made; and the rate of evolving technology will decrease. So singularity is needed to infuse technology into humans to enhance their academic and physical abilities.
But what will this mean for sports? For competitions? If everyone could be enhanced in any way they wanted, then what will be the purpose of their hard work; for everyone who trained hard to be who they are today? Also, who would get this technology? Would the enhancements be privatized so that only rich people can afford them? And what of the controversial debates about genetically modified babies? ASDJKLASKL:DJ:QWIO:FJASDKAS:KLDJAS:LKDJASL:DKJASLDJMIND BLOWN
Although the singularity would seem to be one of the greatest revolutions of the world, I don’t think people would be able to adjust to the sudden changes in technology.
An expansion on the Technological Singularity: http://electronics.howstuffworks.com/gadgets/high-tech-gadgets/technological-singularity.htm
Without clean water, many people (especially the young) had suffered from diarrhoeal diseases (especially in developing countries); contributing to approximately 1.5 million deaths every year, or 4000-6000 deaths per day due to dehydration. In addition, the contaminated water resulted in health defects such as reduced personal productive time, nausea, stomach pains and more. To make it worse, many developing countries have little health care to aid these people.
The Lifestraw is a straw that’s capable of filtering dirty water to be drank immediately through a straw. INGENIOUS! Put into numbers: The Lifestraw is capable of filtering a maximum of 1000 litres of water, whilst removing 99.99% of bacteria, parasites, viruses and other things harmful. Lifestraw Family (a similar product) can filter out 18000 litres of water. With the use of the Lifestraw, people around the world can have access to clean drinking water; therefore causing fewer sicknesses and diminishing the deaths associated with diarrhoeal diseases.
Although the target market of the Lifestraw was to be people in developing countries, the cost of manufacturing the Lifestraw is expensive (to buy it in Canada is about $5.50. I’m unsure of how much it takes to manufacture it though). The Lifestraw is a tube of about 10 inches made from a durable plastic with a string around it for people to wear. Within the life straw contains a mesh that would filter out larger impurities, and then a polyester filter to filter out bacteria. Afterwards, the water goes though iodine-coated resin beads which kill bacteria, parasites and viruses. A carbon filter removes any taste from the iodine and absorbs the impurities of the water to be drank (refer to http://science.howstuffworks.com/environmental/green-tech/remediation/lifestraw.htm for more information on how it works).
In the end, I would say that the Lifestraw is possibly one of the greatest inventions ever made, as it helps people in need in developing countries while also temporarily helping in the issue of the Earth’s diminishing clean water supply. I only hope in the future that the Lifestraw can be manufactured more cheaply to be distributed all across countries with little amounts of clean water.
The Lifestraw website here: http://www.vestergaard-frandsen.com/buy-lifestraw/
According to http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/windsor/story/2011/12/07/wdr-apprenticeship-skill-trade-shortage.html, there is going to be a mass shortage on skilled workers. Amount of shortage: “By some estimates, Ontario could face a shortage of more than 300,000 skilled workers in another 10 years.” (CBC News)
Skilled workers are people who work for others who have learned skilled trade; therefore being skilled in whatever they are doing. They’re also called apprentices. The education and training for apprentices is done either in classrooms (college) or on the job, for a more hands-on experience. In addition, the apprentice gets payed for whatever they do whilst learning more about the profession.
The reasoning for why there is a shortage on skilled workers is possibly due to the misjudgement that apprenticeship do not grant as much money as other jobs obtained through having University degrees. However, apprentices can make as much money, less money or even more money based on their skill trade and their experiences; the same thing as any other job.
Refer to http://www.red-seal.ca/w.2lc.4me@-eng.jsp?lang=eng for information on apprenticeships in every province and territory (Canada)
This post is going to talk about aesthetics and its purposes in the world of design.
Aesthetics are defined as “The branch of philosophy that deals with the nature and expression of beauty, as in the fine arts” (From http://www.thefreedictionary.com/aesthetics). Whether something is beautiful varies depending on the different perspectives of the viewers. In design, aesthetics play a great role, similar to the function of the structure and its mechanics. Analogy: When I buy running shoes, I look at the shoes not based on their function and ability to make me run faster, but based on their look and how “cool” they looked to me (well at least when I was young). It’s no different today: at first glance, people would usually have preferences on a design that looks beautiful compared to a dull looking design with similar functions and abilities. Fashion, houses, cell phones, toys, food and many more things are greatly affected by their aesthetic appeal over their functions, mechanics and other properties.
In design, aesthetics are based upon what everyone thinks looks nice; what the creator thinks that what everyone thinks looks nice, because our views of beauty are greatly affected by the media and its uniqueness; hence what is “beautiful” could also be “what is trending.” As a result, the designs of things are always altered to suit the ever-changing definitions of beauty, such as the designs of “iPhones.” Although aesthetic appeal plays a great role in design (and in the market), I think that we, as consumers, should focus more on the functions, mechanics and other properties of structures as they would aid society more, and they would also influence more useful designs to be built to aid the people who need it the most.
Civil engineering is about the design, construction and maintenance of human-made structures and/or natural structures in the environment through the use of physics and mathematics. Actually, civil engineering includes many subcategories such as environmental engineering, geotechnical, structural, biomechanics, nanotechnology, transportation and many more.
The purpose of having civil engineers are to design the properties of the structures, such as its ability to support its own weight and the materials used for the manufacturing of it. For example, a water treatment plant can be made to aid in the purification of water to help people in developing countries obtain clean water; and civil engineering will aid in deciding the pressures, temperatures, material and other properties of the strucutre to ensure that it lasts long and strong. This is the differences between an architect and a civil engineer. The architect would play a greater part in designing how the building/structure would look and its purposes while the civil engineer would pay more attention to the background of how everything will work out.
During the time in our technological design class when everyone was still building cabins, my teacher spoke to us about a famous architect named Frank Lloyd Wright who made unique American architecture, and thought that we could be inspired by his work. It was until now that I decided to research about his works.
Frank Lloyd Wright was known for his prairie-styled buildings; buildings located close to grassland and/or in a natural environment. What made his buildings so famous was mostly because of their aesthetic appeal which was complemented by synchronizing the structures and materials of the building with the surrounding environment. In addition, Frank Lloyd Wright had designed many of his own furniture (which were built into the house), along with stained glass.
“The prairie has a beauty of its own and we should recognize and accentuate this natural beauty, its quiet level. Hence, gently sloping roofs, low proportions, quiet sky lines, suppressed heavy-set chimneys and sheltering overhangs, low terraces and out-reaching walls sequestering private gardens” – Frank Lloyd Wright
It was first built in 1889 for the 100th anniversary of the French Revolution; now it’s one of the greatest tourist attractions in the world.
The design of the tower was actually based from a competition. Many architects had designed proposals for what the building would look like, but in the end the Eiffel Tower design (which was made by Alexendre-Gustave Eiffel, who was a chemical engineer) was selected. After its construction, it was to be dismantled; however due to the many protests from the civilians and tourists, it was decided that the structure was to stay. Starting from the 1900’s, the tower was used as a transmission tower once radios and televisions were widespread. Also, it was used for several scientific experiments involving temperature, pressure and more.
During the construction of the tower, the Eiffel Tower was the tallest man-made structure in the world (986 feet at the time. The height was later increased to 1052 feet because of an addition of a television antenna), and was able to stand against wind pressure of 82 PSF (at the top). During this time, people had thought that the look of the structure was unappealing; “an eyesore”. Once the structure was made, it took up 328 feet of space for each side of its square base, and weighed approximately 7300 tons.
Once upon a time, man created a box-shaped camera. 100 years later, cameras are STILL BOX SHAPED: We’re stuck in a paradigm.
What are paradigms? Paradigms are defined as “A worldview underlying the theories and methodology of a particular scientific subject.” It’s like how people continue to construct things as how they used to be constructed; with little or no individuality at all. In order for humans to evolve, we must break our current paradigm and invent something new, something super-cool that the world has never seen. I think this is the way of becoming successful in design.
Once a paradigm is broken, it is called a paradigm shift. Over time there have been many paradigm shifts which have greatly affected how we live today, such as the invention of the light bulb which have replaced candle, the invention of cars to provide another method of transportation or even sliced bread. In order to do a paradigm shift, one needs a lot of knowledge on the necessities and desires of humans and contain a vast imagination (to be very original). Others have tried isolating themselves from the technology and advancements we have today just so that they can think of something new; something different. Through continually shifting paradigms, humanity will be able to evolve significantly quicker and continually make up newer ways of living to increase survivability.
The voyage of discovery is not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes.
– Marcel Proust
An architect; an inventor of buildings. They’re job is to make buildings; generally speaking. Architects actually have a wide range of jobs, including site evaluation, project management, designing buildings, contract administration, builder/consultant qualification, planning, building code study, building contractor, building inspector, building researcher, lead consultant, project manager, business manager and many more. It’s like a hospital: Some people specialize in certain topics more than others. For example, people good at drawing will draw out designs while organized people can plan out everything (project management). Getting a degree in architecture can lead to many careers, like an architect critic and an urban planner (many more careers at http://www.raic.org/architecture_architects/becoming_an_architect/index_e.htm).
To become an architect requires a lot of education. A bachelors degree of architecture is needed (5 years of education) and possibly a masters degree as well (6-8 years). In addition, a program called IDP (Intern Development Program) must be completed to allow the graduates to gain real-life experience in architecture firms. Once this is finished, one must complete the ARE (Architect Registration Exam) which tests the graduates once again (This is for USA; I’m unsure whether this applies elsewhere). The median of wages of architects in 2010 was $72550 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The lower 10 percent of architects earned less than $41,320 while the higher 10 percent of architects earned more than $119,220.
In my own opinion, I have yet to experience the education needed to become an architect. In addition, I am inexperienced of how it would be like to be an architect; to know whether I like it or not. As a result (judging on the education and salary of an architect), I would not become an architect.