The Health Benefits of Trees in Minnesota and Beyond

They prevent $7 billion in health costs every year by filtering air pollution—not to mention their psychological effects. New research says the closer you can live to trees, the better off you are.

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The Corduroy Blog Asks, Can You Print a House Using a 3D Printer?

We've all heard of the wonders of 3D printers. They have the capability to help us solve really challenging design problems on a scaled down level, partially because of the amount of time saved creating architectural models. 

The benefits of 3D printing for architect and designers are many, including the ability to quickly edit and reproduce 3D designs, and digitally storing them for future production.

So, Can You Print a House Using a 3D Printer? 

We asked, and then we found Apis Cor. 

They are the first company to develop a mobile construction 3D printer that is capable of printing whole buildings completely on-site. 
Also they are people. Engineers, managers, builders and inventors sharing one common idea – to change the construction industry so that millions of people will have an opportunity to improve their living conditions. 

Today we have Apis Cor's 3D printing technology, new building materials and a mobile 3D printer to build affordable, eco-friendly houses within a single day, capable of lasting up to 175 years. 

Discover more about how Apis Cor strives to create access to housing for all the people of the world:

Can a house be printed using a 3D printer?


Yes, of course, nowadays it’s quite possible. Construction 3D printers use the same principle as most 3D printers — they create objects by producing horizontal layers of material. Construction ordinarily uses concrete mixture as a material. Using a construction 3D printer it’s possible to print internal and external walls and other vertical wall constructions, foundation formwork, prefabricated monolithic slabs, as well as a variety of different structures and small architectural forms, such as columns. The difference remains only in the printing approach.

So to date, most building 3D printers have been utilizing a portal design and worked in rectangular coordinate systems. Printers of this design are not mobile, print individual sections of walls and buildings, which are then delivered to the construction site and put together like a traditional block building.

Russian engineers have designed the «Apis Cor» mobile construction 3D printer that is easy to transport and which prints the «box» of a house completely on site and is not any different in general characteristics from any other house built according to the traditional technology of construction. After the layered print process is done, the walls are so smooth that they are ready for finishing works right away.

Therefore, building a house can be fast, environmentally friendly and affordable, if we entrust all the difficult work to smart machines and introduce new technologies. A single printer replaces an entire brigade of builders, reduces the time and cost of construction without loss of quality. For this reason, construction 3D printing is a very promising development direction for high technologies.

Visit the Apis Cor blog for the original post:

The Corduroy Studio Shares NY Times Article on Working Less, Resting More.

At The Corduroy Studio, our approach to landscape design overlaps with our ideas about work, health, and nature. It is gratifying to see national attention being paid to topics that Corduroy has been pursuing since 1980. 

Silicon Valley author, lecturer and consultant Alex Soojung-Kim Pang is making the business case for rest, arguing that it not only is essential to people’s health and happiness but also makes them more productive.

His new book, Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less (Basic Books, 2016), draws on scientific evidence and the habits of famous artists, business trailblazers and global leaders to argue that we can be more successful in all areas of our lives by working fewer hours and pursuing “deliberate rest”—time set aside for exercise or hobbies so that we can recharge and be ready to focus when it really matters.

See the full NY Times Review of Books article by Arianna Huffington below. 

Learn more about Pang's theories here:




DECEMBER 12, 2016

Why You Get More Done When You Work Less
By Alex Soojung-Kim Pang
310 pp. Basic Books. $27.50.

We hear a lot about the many things that are disrupting the American workplace: the decline of manufacturing, demographics, globalization, automation and, especially, technology. And it’s true — all of those are roiling the world of work, not just in America but worldwide.

But there’s another force transforming the way we work, and that is: nonwork. Or, more specifically, what we’re doing in those few hours when we’re not working. With “Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less,” Alex Soojung-Kim Pang superbly illuminates this phenomenon and helps push it along.

What’s being disrupted is our collective delusion that burnout is simply the price we must pay for success. It’s a myth that, as Pang notes, goes back to the Industrial Revolution. That’s when the Cartesian notion of home and work as separate — and opposing — spheres took hold. Home, Pang writes, was “the place where a man could relax and recover from work.” When there was time, that is. Because soon leisure time and nighttime became commodities to monetize. Over the next decades, starting with demands from labor reformers, work hours were pushed back, mostly for safety reasons. But even today, the conversation focuses on “work-life balance,” which implicitly accepts the notion of work and life as Manichaean opposites — perpetually in conflict.

That’s why “Rest” is such a valuable book. If work is our national religion, Pang is the philosopher reintegrating our bifurcated selves. As he adeptly shows, not only are work and rest not in opposition, they’re inextricably bound, each enhancing the other. “Work and rest aren’t opposites like black and white or good and evil,” Pang writes. “They’re more like different points on life’s wave.”

His central thesis is that rest not only makes us more productive and more creative, but also makes our lives “richer and more fulfilling.” But not all rest is created equal — it’s not just about not-working. The most productive kind of rest, according to Pang, is also active and deliberate. And as such, that means rest is a skill. “Rest turns out to be like sex or singing or running,” Pang writes. “Everyone basically knows how to do it, but with a little work and understanding, you can learn to do it a lot better.” Though he’s obviously never heard me sing, I take his point.

And he illustrates it well, showing how the secret behind many of history’s most creative authors, scientists, thinkers and politicians was that they were very serious and disciplined about rest. “Creativity doesn’t drive the work; the work drives creativity,” Pang writes. “A routine creates a landing place for the muse.”

And as Pang notes, modern science has now validated what the ancients knew: Work “provided the means to live,” while rest “gave meaning to life.” Thousands of years later, we have the science to prove it. “In the last couple decades,” he writes, “discoveries in sleep research, psychology, neuroscience, organizational behavior, sports medicine, sociology and other fields have given us a wealth of insight into the unsung but critical role that rest plays in strengthening the brain, enhancing learning, enabling inspiration, and making innovation sustainable.”

We can’t declare victory quite yet. To experience the kind of rest that fuels creativity and productivity, we need to detach from work. But in our technology-obsessed reality, we carry our entire work world with us wherever we go, right in our pockets. It’s not enough to leave the office, when the office goes to dinner or to a game or home with you. And it’s not enough just to put our devices on vibrate or refrain from checking them. As Sherry Turkle noted in her book “Reclaiming Conversation,” the mere presence of a smartphone or device, even when not being used, alters our inner world. So achieving the kind of detachment we need for productive rest can’t really be done without detaching physically from our devices.

And even though the science has come in, still standing in the way is our ingrained workplace culture that valorizes burnout. “With a few notable exceptions,” Pang writes, “today’s leaders treat stress and overwork as a badge of honor, brag about how little they sleep and how few vacation days they take, and have their reputations as workaholics carefully tended by publicists and corporate P.R. firms.”

Turning that around will require a lot of work. And rest. The path of least resistance — accepting the habits of our current busyness culture and the technology that envelops us and keeps us perpetually connected — won’t make us more productive or more fulfilled. Instead of searching life hacks to make us more efficient and creative, we can avail ourselves of the life hack that’s been around as long as we have: rest. But we have to be as deliberate about it as we are about work. “Rest is not something that the world gives us,” Pang writes. “It’s never been a gift. It’s never been something you do when you’ve finished everything else. If you want rest, you have to take it. You have to resist the lure of busyness, make time for rest, take it seriously, and protect it from a world that is intent on stealing it.”

And you can start by putting down your phone — better yet, put it in another room — and picking up this much-needed book.

Arianna Huffington is the founder and chief executive of Thrive Global and the author of “The Sleep Revolution.”