cargo.art

August 29th, 2012

or, the cult of the shipping container building.

work-in-progress

Office Space

google image-search

DesignBoom: metalab: SPACE shipping container office also at inhabitat. Can’t find a price online, but may possibly be cc. $75K (Houston bought 17 by using a $1.3 million grant).

Inhabitat: Shipping Containers Transform Warehouse Into Office Space

A steel cargo container becomes a backyard retreat

$1800 used shipping container as architects’ backyard office

I must have first seen something like this in Stewart Brand’s How Buildings Learn (online excerpt)

Homes

DailyGreen: Amazing Homes and Offices Built from Shipping Containers (slideshow)
All Terrain Cabin (for a family of four)
(sixth item in slideshow)

Canada’s Bark Design Collective built the All Terrain Cabin (ATC) as a showcase for sustainable (and Canadian!) ingenuity. The small home is based on a standard shipping container, and is said to be suitable for a family of four, plus a pet, to live off the grid in comfort and style.

The cabin folds up to look like any old shipping container, and can be sent via rail, truck, ship, airplane or even helicopter. When you’re ready to rest your bones, the cabin quickly unfolds to 480 square feet of living space, with a range of creature comforts.

[NOTE: the link goes to some other photos of the ATC, none of which are in “nature.” But neither is the one above, which looks like a rendering/Photoshop job.]
More info in waybackmachine and photos.

dornob: DIY Used Cargo Homes & Shipping Container House Plans
House built from 8 stacked containers (self-designed)

8 eye-catching shipping container homes

Inhabitat: This Shipping Container home in Duluth, MN hasn’t revamped the container exteriors at all, and it sorta works. Don’t think my wife would go for this look, though.
Holyoke Cabin in Duluth, MN

Resources

Wikipedia: Shipping container architecture

How to find used shipping containers

How to Find and Buy Good Used Cargo Containers

See Also: housing.art

housing.art

August 28th, 2012

In lieu of a simple, spacious, modernist house that I can never afford (nor talk my wife into), I’d like a little cabin “out back.”

If I had a Ted Kaczynski cabin with a wood-stove, solar power + batteries, pumped/rain water, lanterns, and a typewriter (plus space for a laptop), I could still write/make stuff that is somehow NOW, not a 19th century leftover.

I still have lingering fears/doubts about the future, leftover 1980s concerns over the collapse of civilization that we excreted into all of those Road Warrior movies, only now it’s come back to haunt us with the econopocalypse and DNS malware botnets. There is some future in going off the grid, but being aware of the grid, and dealing with the grid, and trying to encourage the grid to be griddish and non-griddish, to be discrete, interconnected and disconnected, re-routable and not dependent on the electrons, and able to self-repair with some non-digital components, to repair itself in the dark, and to survive things.

Plus, you know, the NSA can’t read what you type and pass around by hand. The old Soviet samizdat……

hoo-hah! paranoia! rants! mad bombers! are there enough keywords in here yet?

Seriously, I’d like a little cabin out back, with some power and a cable-internet connection. But with some solar panels, a bike/wind generator, hand-pump well, lamps, etc. And space for some bookshelves and a manual typewriter. And a nice porch-cum-deck, so we could grill back here, and enjoy some days away from the television. It would be cheaper than expanding the house. Although we don’t own it.

and then there are all of the we-love-humid-connecticut bugs.

and, ugh, spiders.

UGH.

This is a small link-dump of some things I’ve seen recently.

Maine cabin, off-the-grid

The Bellomo House Arc is a small, beautiful pre-fab. And supposedly $65K for a single module.

A clean-line cabin in Wisconsin.

A solar yurt. Not so sure about the whole “round” thing. Nature is curvy because things grow; our products are rectilinear because it’s easier to cut straight lines and 90-degree angles.

See Also: some specifics on cargo-container homes.

I’ve thought about trailers, etc., and while they hit the size and price-point (due to mass-production), the actual use of transport to me seems inefficient. How much gas does it take to haul one of those things around? Does it really offset the cost of a decent motel?

Buying one and using it in a permanent location seems like a mis-fit — they were designed to be mobile, and are built for such a purpose. I’d like something more solid. But, if the mass-produced cost-offset of a designed-to-be-portable-but-keeps-it-parked-in-the-woods is they way to go, that could be a way to go.

MOBILE HOMES ARE NOT AN OPTION. There’s just something icky about them. I’d so much rather go with a re-purposed shipping container.

gifs.art

August 27th, 2012

(click to launch larger animated gifs)

(source)

apophenia.art

August 27th, 2012


(source)

Looks like a good source of data for TextMunger; and/or some of its output….

hammer.art

August 23rd, 2012

I’ve gotten the ban-hammer at BoingBoing.

ban hammer

Blocked from posting comments

Why? No idea!

I did have comments disappear in a post on the Pussy Riot Solidarity Protests where I asked how [Femen activist cutting down a memorial cross] was different from the Taliban destroying the Bamiyan Buddhas. (another comment I posted still exists). I posted it twice, because the original comment disappeared. At the time, I thought it was a glitch, so re-posted. The second time, I saw for sure that it appeared. So the next day, when it was gone, I knew it had been removed. I thought about asking why, but decided to let sleeping dogs lie. [I’ve since noticed other comments have been removed; if I remember correctly, I thought they were pretty innocuous, if focused on using the word “boobs”. Which is understandable given the nature of Femen protests.]

It’s a bit of an extreme comparison, but debatable, and I was hoping for some debate.

On one level, the actions are the same — the destruction of icons one does not care about in order to draw attention.

The primary difference is the historicity of the Buddhas, and the notoriety and incompetence of the Taliban who took a month to destroy them.

[For some personal context, I align with the Western majority who think that the original Pussy Riot protest/performance was not worthy of the jail sentences they received. I’m Catholic — Roman, not Eastern Orthodox — and was not horrified by what they did. It was a stunt, but not a destructive act.]

And then in the post on the Spanish fresco “restoration” disaster, I simply posted FREE PUSSY RIOT! — it got 15 likes, a reply, and has since been removed. WTF?!?!?

I still think it was marginally witty. The amateur “restoration” was a disaster, and I am implicitly comparing it to the destruction of a religious icon (as an act of agit-prop), and also implicitly suggesting that the bad-restoration was a conscious act of destruction out of solidarity with Pussy Riot.

Not brilliant, perhaps not even witty, but worthy of the ban-hammer?

Unless Godwin’s law has been drastically expanded, I didn’t even run afoul of that.

As my friend Mike points out, managing an online community is taxing:

From my own work as a moderator, I have to confess that there are days when you have to deal with like 10 idiots in a row, and then you get into a mood where you deal with the next 50 issues by shooting first, asking questions later.

See Also: Comments in my facebook post that points here.

See Also: An interesting counter-point on Pussy Riot solidarity and Wikipedia on Voina

fiendish.art

August 14th, 2012

Unless there is a super-long, and probably super-boring/annoying, remix out there, this particular transcript seems a bit… absurd:

 

Grimly fiendish plays the game that never plays
Sing out loud but never prayed
Grimly fiendish wears a coat thats black and long
He doesn’t know that it’s all wrong
Simply fiendish, a child caught in a grown up world
No lies convince the court
Once a week I could be found on the faces all the frowns
Hide and seek, tried so hard to find that crime could pay
Just for today

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Let me get the story straight
You never gave me a break
It’s a case of give and take
You didn’t make me good you just painted me green
You made me part of your forgotten dream
Grimly fiendish, we’ll send you just where you belong
Where the children can’t be found

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Hide and seek, tried so hard and just to find that crime could pay
Just for today

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
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Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
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Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
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Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
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Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
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Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy
Bad bad bad boy

 

See Also:
Wikipedia:Grimly_Fiendish
Wikipedia:Phantasmagoria_%28The_Damned_album%29
Wikipedia:The_Damned_

 

big.art

August 13th, 2012

I was having (losing) a discussion (argument) this weekend about outsourcing, marketing, and pricing. So I thought this article was a timely find. Although it would have been MORE timely on Friday.

Freakonomics blog: Adventures in Ideas: Conversation With Al Norman, Author of Occupy Walmart

For many Walmart shoppers, their grasp of the economic ramifications of a decision to shop at big box stores is no bigger than the dimensions of their own shopping cart. There used to be a Walmart bumper sticker which read: “Outta my way, I’m shopping at Walmart.” But if you look behind the sticker price, there is a hidden price to our economy of shopping at the giant chain stores.

The story of blue jeans will illustrate the economic forces at work. Levi-Strauss was once the iconic symbol of American clothing. Because of pressure from big box stores to lower their prices, two things happened: 1) the manufacturer shut down all its U.S. stitching plants about a decade ago, throwing more than 3,300 Americans out of work, and 2) the company began making a special “big box” brand of jeans only for stores like Walmart, K-Mart and Meijers. Today, you can buy Levi-Strauss slim straight jeans for men anywhere from $22 to $26 at these box stores.

But Walmart also sells its own “Faded Glory” brand jeans for $10 a pair. None of these jeans are made in America, and the cheaper the price, the cheaper the quality. The fabric and the thread count in a Faded Glory jean are inferior to a Levi-Strauss Signature jean, which is inferior to the Levi 511 jeans. If I go to Walmart and buy a pair of Faded Glory or Signature Levi’s, I am supporting the outsourcing of jobs to Asian sweatshops, getting an inferior product that ends up in my town’s landfill in half the time of a superior product, and weakening the value of labor in the U.S. — often described as the shrinking of the American middle class.

When Levi-Strauss closed its U.S. plants, a company spokesman said, “There is no question that we must move away from owned-and-operated plants in the U.S. to remain competitive in our industry…Outsourcing production…helps us maintain strong margin.” Since 2004, a company called Li & Fung USA has been designing, manufacturing, and marketing certain Levi trademarks. In essence, a foreign company has become the “brand manager” for what was once the classic American clothing company.

Companies like Walmart have had a major impact on our trade deficit with China, our loss of millions of production jobs, and our switch from a manufacturing economy to a consumer economy. All this flows from the decisions we make as shoppers to buy Chinese-made jeans at an import store like Walmart.

[….]

As I state in my latest book, capitalism is inherently very wasteful and inefficient. Defenders of this “free” marketplace like to quote the Austrian economist Joseph Schumpeter, who popularized the concept of the “creative destruction” of the capitalist enterprise. One of the great economic myths about companies like Walmart is that they are “job creators.” When a new Walmart opens, the company (and local officials) will claim that the new superstore brings with it “250 new jobs.” This is a form of voodoo economics—because studies have shown that as much as 80 percent of these jobs are simply transferred from existing retailers in the same trade area. So the net effect is negligible. In fact, some analyses have shown negative job growth after a Walmart opens.

[….]

The point is, capitalism is not “perfectly engineered.” It is perhaps evenly balanced between creation and destruction. In the field or retailing, the nearly 4,000 Walmart stores in American have done little or nothing to lift the economy, and as I have argued for years, have actually precipitated the decline in the value of labor and the sustainability of the middle class. Our economy over the past 50 years would have fared better if Sam Walton had never stumbled onto the concept of discount retailing in small towns.

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