Hey guys,


I just launched my new startup, called Play2thefuture. Our aim is to completly change modern day philantropy with a system that’s fun, engaging, and meaningful.


Check out our website at www.play2thefuture.com



Play2thefuture is a platform to connect people to the most serious challenges facing our planet in a revolutionary way. We do this through hosting crowdsourcing challenges that deal with issues ranging from malnutrition, access to clean water, disaster relief, and deforestation. Individuals or teams of problem-solvers will develop their best ideas and the users will be able to vote for their favorite idea.

Players can earn your voting power by playing casual games that focus on those same serious issues. At the end of the month, which ever solution received the most votes will get a quarter of Play2thefuture’s revenue to implement their innovation.

We started Play2thefuture because there are too many people who want to make an impact on the biggest challenges that our world currently face, but don’t feel they can have an impact and there are plenty of others with great ideas, but don’t have the funds to launch their innovation.


It’s time for us to tackle the biggest challenges that face our world in a new and engaging way.

Play games, save the world.



We are smack bang in the middle of a second industrial revolution. 3D printing, or “additive manufacturing” as it is more properly known, is about to transform every single aspect of our lives.


Machines today can print objects out of almost any material – from nylon to glass, from chocolate to titanium – and with any complex geometry. This is transforming not just engineering, but many other fields, including education, archaeology, bio-printing and even food printing. Look online and you will see thousands of objects ready to be printed on demand, from custom-shaped hearing aids to authentic-looking replicas of ancient cuneiform tablets.


More importantly, soon anyone will be able to make complex products quickly and cheaply, something that will democratise innovation and unleash human creativity.


The next stage of this journey, which we are just beginning to experience, is control over the composition of such printed matter – going beyond shaping geometry, to shaping the internal structure of materials – with unprecedented fidelity. Forget the traditional limitations imposed by conventional manufacturing, in which each part is made of a single material. Instead, we are talking about specifying microstructure with micrometre-scale precision.


We are making materials within materials, and embedding and weaving multiple materials into complex patterns. We can print hard and soft materials in patterns that create bizarre and new structural behaviours, like materials that expand laterally when pulled longitudinally.


This flexibility means you will soon be able to print a custom tennis racket that cleverly compensates for your unique weaknesses, or a replacement spinal-disc implant exactly tailored for your bad back.


The third and final episode of this journey, of which we have only seen the early signs so far, is the control over behaviour. Here we will go beyond controlling just the shape of matter and its composition. We will then be able to program these materials to function in arbitrary ways – to sense and react, to compute and behave – moving from an object’s mechanical functionality to controlling how it processes information and energy as well.


When this day arrives, you will be able to print virtually anything – from a cellphone to a robot that will walk out of the printer, batteries included. But that robot will not look at all like today’s robots, because it will not be limited by the constraints imposed by conventional manufacturing. The ability to construct systems like this will create a new paradigm of engineering, one that is not unlike biology.



If humans distinguished themselves from their evolutionary ancestors by making tools, then additive manufacturing represents the ultimate tool – it will transform human culture in ways we can hardly anticipate.



by Hod Lipson

Hod Lipson is an associate professor at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. He has pioneered evolutionary robotics and AI, and has co-authored a report for the US government on 3D printing



“The first-ever open presidential nominating process. No special interests. No agendas. No partisanship.

A greater voice for all Americans, no matter their party. Every registered voter can be a delegate. Any constitutionally-eligible citizen can be a candidate.

The power to choose your candidate in the 2012 election. Real issues. Real candidates. Real votes.”

We the people

We the people




Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture (AS+GG) has won an international competition to design the Wuhan Greenland Center. At 606 meters (1,988 ft) high, the building is expected to be China’s third tallest and the world’s fourth tallest when construction is due to be completed in 2016. The tower will feature a number of sustainable elements, the most visibly obvious of which is the tower’s streamlined form with softly rounded corners and a tapered body that culminates in a distinctive domed top.

The tower’s aerodynamic shape, which sees its three corners rising from a tripod-shaped base and tapering upwards to culminate in an arched tip above the dome at the top, is designed to reduce wind resistance and the vortex action that builds up around super-tall towers. AS+GG says this will allow the amount of structural material and its associated embodied carbon to be minimized. The curtain wall cladding the body of the tower will enclose a composite concrete core with steel framing and will contrast with the corners of the building, which will be made of smooth curved glass.

To further reduce wind pressure against the tower, there are also apertures placed at regular intervals in the curtain wall. As well as letting the wind through, these vents will also house air intake and exhaust systems on mechanical floors – and provide an out of view place to hide window-washing systems. The ventilation systems will also include rotary air-to-air enthalpy wheels – also known as thermal wheels – to capture energy from the building’s exhaust systems and use it to pre-heat or pre-cool air entering the building.

Water conservation features include low-flow plumbing fixtures that are designed to not only cut water usage, but also reduce the amount energy needed to pump the water around the building. A greywater recovery system will also be used to take wastewater from the building’s hotel laundry, sinks and showers for reuse in the building’s evaporative cooling system.

The high-efficiency lighting system will be coupled to a daylight-responsive control system that will automatically switch off the lights when there is sufficient daylight available.

The Wuhan Greenland Center will be built near the confluence of the Yangtze and Han rivers in Wuhan, with construction due to begin in the next couple of months. Once complete, the building will boast about 300,000 square meters (3.2 million sq ft) of floor space, including about 200,000 sq m (2.15 million sq ft) of office space, 50,000 sq m (0.53 million sq ft) of luxury apartments and condominiums, a 45,000 sq m (0.48 million sq ft) five-star hotel, and a 5,000 sq m (54,000 sq ft), 27 m (88.5 ft) tall private club at the penthouse level.

AS+GG is partnering with structural engineering form Thornton Tomasetti and energy services, engineering and consulting company PositivEnergy Practice on the project.

Source: AS+GG via inhabitat


MacBook in 2020

Put aside your critical ego for a moment and enjoy designer Tommaso Gecchelin’s vision of an Apple MacBook circa 2020. Keyboards, mice and 2-dimensional screens are passe. Hit the jump for the future.

Envisage a computer nearly paper thin, able to shape shift from metal to plastic. Thanks to molecular manufacturing, a micro-lattice nano material enables you to shrink the dimensions to fit into your pocket. Nano technology miniaturizes familiar technologies into thin sheets of composites, each serving a separate function. One layer is photo voltaic for infinite battery life. One layer projects ultrasound waves for tactile feedback. Another layer works like a pelican cam to capture the real world in 3D while a separate layer works like a holographic emitter. And of course, everything is wireless. No ports, no cables. I only have one question.

Will it blend?

Designer: Tommaso Gecchelin




Efficiency is a problem with today’s solar panels; they only collect about 20 percent of available light. Now, a University of Missouri engineer has developed a flexible solar sheet that captures more than 90 percent of available light, and he plans to make prototypes available to consumers within the next five years.

Patrick Pinhero, an associate professor in the MU Chemical Engineering Department, says energy generated using traditional photovoltaic (PV) methods of solar collection is inefficient and neglects much of the available solar electromagnetic (sunlight) spectrum. The device his team has developed – essentially a thin, moldable sheet of small antennas called nantenna – can harvest the heat from industrial processes and convert it into usable electricity. Their ambition is to extend this concept to a direct solar facing nantenna device capable of collecting solar irradiation in the near infrared and optical regions of the solar spectrum.

Working with his former team at the Idaho National Laboratory and Garrett Moddel, an electrical engineering professor at the University of Colorado, Pinhero and his team have now developed a way to extract electricity from the collected heat and sunlight using special high-speed electrical circuitry. This team also partners with Dennis Slafer of MicroContinuum, Inc., of Cambridge, Mass., to immediately port laboratory bench-scale technologies into manufacturable devices that can be inexpensively mass-produced.

“Our overall goal is to collect and utilize as much solar energy as is theoretically possible and bring it to the commercial market in an inexpensive package that is accessible to everyone,” Pinhero said. “If successful, this product will put us orders of magnitudes ahead of the current solar energy technologies we have available to us today.”

As part of a rollout plan, the team is securing funding from the U.S. Department of Energy and private investors. The second phase features an energy-harvesting device for existing industrial infrastructure, including heat-process factories and solar farms.

Within five years, the research team believes they will have a product that complements conventional PV solar panels. Because it’s a flexible film, Pinhero believes it could be incorporated into roof shingle products, or be custom-made to power vehicles.

Once the funding is secure, Pinhero envisions several commercial product spin-offs, including infrared (IR) detection. These include improved contraband-identifying products for airports and the military, optical computing, and infrared line-of-sight telecommunications.


“Fundamental changes in society are sometimes labeled impractical or contrary to human nature: as if nuclear war were practical or as if there were only one human nature. But fundamental changes can clearly be made. We are surrounded by them. In the last two centuries abject slavery, which was with us for thousands of years, has almost entirely been eliminated in a stirring world wide revolution. Women, systematically mistreated for millennia, are gradually gaining the political and economic power traditionally denied to them. And some wars of aggression have recently been stopped or curtailed because of a revulsion felt by the people in the aggressor nations. The old appeals to racial, sexual and religious chauvinism and to rabid nationalism are beginning not to work. A new consciousness is developing which sees the earth as a single organism and recognizes that an organism at war with itself is doomed. We are one planet.”
— Carl Sagan