Blog 5

This week in Sustainability we focused on bioinspired designs. At the beginning of the week we were to read three different readings over this topic. The first article I read was called Bio-Inspired Design: What Can We Learn From Nature? In this article one of the topics discussed was bio-inspired lighting designs, which explained how important our sunlight is and how it impacts our lives. The strong preference for nature extends to daylight and views to the outdoors. They had done research on windowless spaces shows that people complain most about the loss of daylight and not having access to time and weather data. When reading this I could completely agree because I am currently living in a house where we do not have windows on our first floor and we are always saying that we wished we could have some natural lighting. Especially during days when it is really nice outside we are not able to get that sunlight or able to crack open a window to get some fresh air. We also can’t have any flowers or plants on the first floor, which makes me sad because I love having flowers around the house. So these next key functions of sunlight they talked about in the reading I could relate to. In ancestral environments, light was likely to have had several key functions that are relevant today. These include Object identification, Indicator of time, Indicator of weather, and Signal of prospect and refuge. There are many times in our house that if we are downstairs we cant really tell what time is it and it always feels like it’s late at night because of the no windows. Also before we go outside we usually ask someone that has already been outside to see what the weather was like, so we would know how to dress for the day.

The second reading that I did this past week was called Polymer based interfaces as bioinspired “smart skins”. This reading was very interesting because it is related to my field of work and I also find technology in clothing amazing. This whole article talks about how we are now making clothing that can mimic the properties shown by biological skins of humans and/or animals. This clothing is based on organic synthetic materials and used as smart “artificial skins”. I personally found the Thermal sensing extremely neat because if we could incorporate that in more clothing I would be more likely to purchase the clothing. The smart interface would be adaptable, or even self-adaptable, to thermal variations by means of an active response, manifested as a modification of intrinsic tailorable properties of the constituent material or structure, which would be nice for my fair skin. The last reading I did this past week was over The Impact of In-Store Greenery on Customers. Reading this article and finding out that introducing foliage to retail stores does not evoke excitement but does elicit pleasure and reduce stress did not surprise me. I think adding greenery into retail stores is a great idea. One of my favorite stores, Urban Outfitters, incorporates this in their stores and I do feel that it adds something to their store that makes your experience there more enjoyable.

A TED talk that we watched this pasted week was about a lady named Elora Hardy and her experience with building with bamboo. Using bamboo as a building material I think is a great idea because it is a extremely strong material and even grows faster than our trees do. Not only is it the smart choice but also the most beautiful and creative martial to use. No two poles of bamboo are alike, so every home, bridge and bathroom is exquisitely unique. This would be a great sustainable resource for us to start incorporating into our homes. We also watched another video on edible spoons. I think this is another great sustainable resource that we could use in our world today. They might cost a little more to make but in the long run this could help save our world a ton. I don’t think I would personally eat the spoon but would still choose this option over a plastic spoon because I know that it would breakdown better and quicker than the plastic spoon.

Biophilia suggests tat human posses an innate tendency to seek connections with nature and other forms of life. A biophilic design is made to reduce stress, enhance creatively and clarity of thought, improve our well-being and expedite healing. There are 14 patterns of biophilic design that we focused on this pasted week but I will share with you three of the patterns that I could relate to or liked. Each patterns lays out series of tools for understanding design opportunities. The first pattern I will talk about is the Presence of Water, I can relate to think pattern because I love the sound of rain and especially when I am sleeping. I have found that when it is raining outside I tend to fall asleep fast and get a better nights rest. The second pattern that stood out to me was Dynamic & Diffuse Light; this pattern positively impacted circadian system functioning and also increases visual comfort. The third pattern that I enjoyed learning about is the Thermal & Airflow Variability. I myself love to roll down my windows in car on a nice day to feel the breeze. The benefit of this pattern is that it can improve perception of temporal and spatial pleasure.

The TED 10 was interesting to learn about this week, and I think everyone should be shown these principles in order to live a more sustainable life. The two principles that stood out to me were Design to Minimize Waste and Design for Cyclability. Designing to minimize waste is created to encourage the textile industry have zero waste and to incorporate more recycling. Design for cyclability has to do with producing garments out of materials that could be cycled easily. Making the materials out of fibers that would breakdown easily. Both these designs are great and more people should look into them.

Instead of making a sketch I decided to take a photo of something that stood out to me. This past week I took a trip to the Oklahoma City Zoo where I was able to see all different kinds of wild life. While walking through the aquarium exhibit I noticed a chart that would be perfect. On this chart it shows all of these different materials that get thrown in the ocean each year, hurting the sea life. On the chart is tells how long each of these objects would take to decompose. I was pleased to see this and thought it would be perfect to share in my blog. I hope this chart will make people want to recycle more, not just for the sea life but also for our lives.


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