With the growing accessibility and the flattening capacity to disrupt a global racket market by decentralizing manufacturing from the East, the 3D printer is giving hope to many that there will be a future for the young people after all. But there are some out there that wish to squander this hope buy using these tools to create tools of destruction. Read an excerpt from this publishing on Nextcity.org
For those cities around the country that have suffered in the wake of deindustrialization over the last few decades, the proliferation of 3D printing holds a lot of promise.
But one self-described crypto-anarchist in Austin, Texas has seen a different kind of potential in 3D printing.
As Forbes reported this past weekend, 25-year-old Cody Wilson and his 9-month-old non-profit company, Defense Distributed, successfully test fired the world’s first 3D printed gun on May 2.
Though the printer Wilson used reportedly cost $8,000, his gun — which he dubbed the “Liberator” — requires only 15 pieces of plastic and one small metal pin to build (or, more accurately, print). It can shoot a .380-caliber bullet without suffering any damage. (A higher-caliber rifle cartridge, however, did destroy the gun, which was test fired at a distance.) Despite warnings from experts that a plastic gun would explode in the shooter’s hand, Wilson seems confident that his creation will soon be put to practical use.
The onset of print-it-yourself guns, combined with citizen-led efforts like that of one Houston man’s wish to arm people in high-crime neighborhoods, has many gun control advocates worried.
“An undetectable firearm constructed on your computer may sound like science fiction, but unfortunately, it’s already here and our laws have never contemplated this scenario,” D.C. City Councilmember Tommy Wells, who introduced the legislation, said in a press release. “These weapons create a significant and immediate threat to public safety.”
Additionally, two congressmen from New York have indicated that they might seek a national ban. U.S. Rep. Steve Israel and Sen. Charles Schumer have both condemned 3D printed guns as posing a significant public safety risk. On Sunday Schumer announced that he and Israel will introduce a bill called the Undetectable Firearms Modernization Act to make these kinds ofDIY printed weapons illegal.
The design community is in an uproar after the New York Times alerted the masses of the treachery that was afoot on the MoMA campus. From the farthest bowels of lecture halls in architecture schools across the globe to the quaint strolls besides Central Park along the Museum Mile, a cry of foul can be distinctly discerned. MoMA to demolish the American Folk Art Museum.
In its place the adjacent Museum of Modern Art, which bought the building in 2011, will put up an expansion, which will connect to a new tower with floors for the Modern on the other side of the former museum. And the folk museum building, designed by Tod Williams and Billie Tsien, will take a dubious place in history as having had one of the shortest lives of an architecturally ambitious project in Manhattan.
“It’s very rare that a building that recent comes down, especially a building that was such a major design and that got so much publicity when it opened for its design — mostly very positive,” said Andrew S. Dolkart, the director of Columbia University’s historic preservation program. “The building is so solid looking on the street, and then it becomes a disposable artifact. It’s unusual and it’s tragic because it’s a notable work of 21st century architecture by noteworthy architects who haven’t done that much work in the city, and it’s a beautiful work with the look of a handcrafted facade.”
MoMA officials said the building’s design did not fit their plans because the opaque facade is not in keeping with the glass aesthetic of the rest of the museum. The former folk museum is also set back farther than MoMA’s other properties, and the floors would not line up.
Great responses have already arisen in the wake of this, as one person calls it in the ArchDaily’s article comments, ”total tragedy.” #FolkMoMA, a crowdsourced protest/call for design ideas to draw/sketch/photoshop/collage possibilities of interaction between the American Folk Art Museum and MoMA buildings has been forged by the research studio DSGN AGNC. If nothing else, the entries so far have been compelling as spectacle of rebellion.
Courtesy of FolkMoMA
Long story short, this is perverse. This building “sits” and “carries” as they would say in the vogue ballroom scene (not to mention Tod and Billie’s gorgeous Logan Arts Center on UChicago’s campus which I also love). Just like in the Logan Arts Center, this building gave you four play tease in the staircases, so to speak. It’s just good thoughtful architecture on a constrained site. It’s a shame they are destroying this, but much like any other monster, the corporate beast must be fed. When institutions that we look to for curatorial allocations don’t acknowledge the callousness irony of their actions, one can only stand back and laugh as the backlash unfolds. Maybe, like Nixon, they too will resign from their duties #Folkgate.
Let’s not make a federal case out of this, ya’ll. I can tell by the amount of shares of this news by my schoolmates that petitions are being drafted frantically as we speak.
Bike lanes going down on Mother Gaston Blvd
Bike lanes going down on Mother Gaston Blvd
Photo credit: www.madeinbrownsville.org
Friday May 10th marked the first sign of bike lanes going down in Brownsville, Brooklyn. The Department of Transportation team was out early on Mother Gaston Blvd from East New York to Livonia Avenue spray painting the guide lines for the new lanes and parking lines that will be painted starting Monday. The Community Board 16 approved project was pushed back a few weeks due to weather but the lanes are highly anticipated as a compliment to the newly installed bike racks that the DOT recently installed a few months back all around the Brownsville/East New York area. Residents I’ve spoken to like NYCHA Citywide Tenant Association President, Reginald Bowman, applauded the changes and look forward to seeing more activity from city agencies saying, “They’re doing good work…” speaking of the Brownsville Partnership and the efforts of the DOT who worked in collaboration with the Community Board in convening public meetings to get the ball rolling on the bike lane discussions in Brownsville.
The Rockwell Group offered a pro-bono plan for a Brownsville Imagination Playground as a renovation to the existing Betsy Head Playground on Dumont and Thomas S. Boyland St. At a price tag of $3.92 million, the park is the second worldwide Imagination Playground and the first for Brooklyn.
Inspired by tree houses, the park will include a multi-level space with water, sand, and loose part play areas surrounded by a long, curving play ramp that weaves through the trees and is bridged by permanent play equipment; renovated basketball and handball courts; and an exercise area for adults.
A trained staff of Play Associates will be onsite to maintain and manage the loose parts during the summer.
MKW + Associates, LLC is the landscape architect for the project.
The $3.92 million playground will be funded with $3.1 million capital funds from Councilwoman Darlene Mealy (D-Brooklyn), $750,000 from Borough President Marty Markowitz, and $70,000 from Mayor Bloomberg.
“The Imagination Playground concept allows children to exercise their minds, as well as their bodies,” said City Parks Commissioner Veronica White. “David Rockwell’s innovative design at the Burling Slip site of the South Street Seaport has proved a tremendous success and we are thrilled that he is working with us to introduce a vibrant new permanent play space for children here in Brownsville’s Betsy Head Park. Special thanks to Council Member Mealy and Borough President Markowitz for allocating the capital funds for this imaginative oasis of play.”
The playground uses large blue re-configurable blocks for “unlocking children’s creative spirit” says Matt Goldman, Co-founder of the Blue School. The Rockwell Group has donated a preliminary set of play blocks to the Brownsville Recreation Center to test.
This comes as great news as the Brownsville Partnership and the Municipal Art Society have recently been holding Hope In: Parks and Open Space sessions as a break out from their successful Hope Summit community planning event earlier this year. Conducting park audits to assess and rank the needs of the community, the organizations are looking to their partnership with Community Board 16 to produce actionable steps toward engaging city resources to do the work that needs to be done in Brownsville—a predominately black area that has seen considerable disinvestment in recent decades in physical environment and educational creative outlets for the youth. This could be a grand opportunity to affect am entire generation of young black and brown children and cultivate their minds to think creatively not only about their play but the physical world around them.
Who knows. I might not be the last black Architect out of Brownsville after all thanks to this.
Some white people just get what it’s like to be a marginalized minority in this nation. Tim Wise is one of those white people. Author of six books including Dear White America: Letter to a New Minority and his highly acclaimed memoir, White Like Me: Reflections on Race from a Privileged Son, Wise offered this poignant commentary on the lesson of race and white privilege that is to be learned in the wake of the Boston Marathon bombing.
As the nation weeps for the victims of the horrific bombing in Boston yesterday, one searches for lessons amid the carnage, and finds few. That violence is unacceptable stands out as one, sure. That hatred — for humanity, for life, or whatever else might have animated the bomber or bombers — is never the source of constructive human action seems like a reasonably close second.
But I dare say there is more; a much less obvious and far more uncomfortable lesson, which many are loathe to learn, but which an event such as this makes readily apparent, and which we must acknowledge, no matter how painful.
It is a lesson about race, about whiteness, and specifically, about white privilege.
I know you don’t want to hear it. But I don’t much care. So here goes.
White privilege is knowing that even if the Boston Marathon bomber turns out to be white, his or her identity will not result in white folks generally being singled out for suspicion by law enforcement, or the TSA, or the FBI.
White privilege is knowing that even if the bomber turns out to be white, no one will call for whites to be profiled as terrorists as a result, subjected to special screening, or threatened with deportation.
And white privilege is being able to know nothing about the crimes committed by most of the terrorists listed above — indeed, never to have so much as heard most of their names — let alone to make assumptions about the role that their racial or ethnic identity may have played in their crimes.
White privilege is knowing that if the Boston bomber turns out to be white, we will not be asked to denounce him or her, so as to prove our own loyalties to the common national good. It is knowing that the next time a cop sees one of us standing on the sidewalk cheering on runners in a marathon, that cop will say exactly nothing to us as a result.
White privilege is knowing that if you are a white student from Nebraska — as opposed to, say, a student from Saudi Arabia — that no one, and I mean no one would think it important to detain and question you in the wake of a bombing such as the one at the Boston Marathon.
And white privilege is knowing that if this bomber turns out to be white, the United States government will not bomb whatever corn field or mountain town or stale suburb from which said bomber came, just to ensure that others like him or her don’t get any ideas. And if he turns out to be a member of the Irish Republican Army we won’t bomb Belfast. And if he’s an Italian American Catholic we won’t bomb the Vatican.
In short, white privilege is the thing that allows you (if you’re white) — and me — to view tragic events like this as merely horrific, and from the perspective of pure and innocent victims, rather than having to wonder, and to look over one’s shoulder, and to ask even if only in hushed tones, whether those we pass on the street might think that somehow we were involved.
It is the source of our unearned innocence and the cause of others’ unjustified oppression.
That is all. And it matters.
Already, listening to the news this morning reporting out on the names and Chechnyan origins of the bombing suspects, the loss of objectivity is starkly evident in the tone of the reporters and pundits. One can only hope that as terrorism becomes more ubiquitous within this nation and pervasive among the races, it becomes a catalyst for our government to do some real probing to understand and resolve the deeply rooted issues that drive people to these ends.