Around The Web | What We’re Reading

How often do you look up at the stars at night? A luxury reserved to those not living under the smog-filled skies of major cities, it’s something we should all consider doing more, especially considering the historic discovery of a neutron star merger picked up by scientists across the globe, in what is considered to be the first time we have ever witnessed the creation of a black hole. Back on earth, it looks as if we’re currently suffering from a ‘dream deprivation’ epidemic, leading to depression, weight gain and memory loss. If all else fails, at least now we have an option of disappearing completely: researchers at Cornell University have come up with a genius new material inspired by our tentacled friend the octopus, one of the most remarkable inventions of the natural world that can make itself invisible through the use of special 3D-morphing skin pigments.

Here is an escapist edition of our weekly news roundup:

“Data-informed design lets us begin in a better place. We start with knowing exactly what those bodies are needing to do, where their friction points are, where their distractions are and how we can design to literally erase or take away any of those distractions.” In this video, explore the design process of Nike’s mammoth Portland HQ as the iconic sports brand takes on the challenge of redefining the uniforms of the entire NBA league.

“Ryoji Ikeda’s ‘Test Pattern [No. 12]’ is a discombobulating experience, in which black and white bar code-like patterns pulse in the darkness. The Japanese artist and electronic composer converts data from music and photography into monochrome binary patterns, immersing gallery-goers in a dazzling kinetic environment.” Take a first look at the exciting lineup for ‘Everything At Once’ the major upcoming group exhibit of 45 artists presented by The Store and Lisson Gallery.

“Today, too many of us view dreams the way we do stars – they emerge nightly and seem magnificent, but are far too distant to be of any relevance to our real lives…Only a few think of them as something like magic, devoting space in our waking brains to remembering and reliving them.” Did you know that we are living in a ‘dream deprivation’ epidemic? One psychologist believes that we should all become less ‘wake-centric’ and start to see dreams as an equally important part of our consciousness. It might just improve our memory, weight management and overall mood.

“If US law enforcement can obtain the emails of foreigners stored outside the United States, what’s to stop the government of another country from getting your emails even though they are located in the United States?” In what is set to be a landmark decision on the privacy of information held by big tech companies like Microsoft, the US Supreme Court will decide what the government has the right to access. Is this another blow to Silicon Valley?

“A neutron star is the highly compressed core of an expired massive star, and is formed in the aftermath of a supernova explosion…The flash from two of them slamming together can escape into the cosmos, producing not just gravitational waves but also one of the universe’s most brilliant fireworks display for anyone who cares to look.” A discovery that astronomers and physicists have been awaiting for decades, the recent detection of a collision between two neutron-stars has huge implications for the field of astronomy. It might also explain the cosmic origins of gold. Take a look.

“I can imagine that engineers will eventually combine this technology with color-shifting pigments to pretty much turn soldiers invisible, just as octopus and cuttlefish do. But what excites me more than bringing a shape-shifting cephalopod suit to my next Halloween party is how this technology could change everyday objects – things like a car dashboard that grows buttons or a flat information point surface that transforms itself into a 3D map showing a trail.” Scientists at Cornell University have created a new material inspired by the incredible natural 3D-morphing properties of the octopus. The possibilities range from camouflage combat gear to joysticks.n