Dynamic architecture, sensitive to the surroundings, in sync with the Earth’s natural processes

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The 2018 report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has made clear that, to achieve the international goal of holding the average surface temperature rise to 1.5 degrees Celsius, global emissions of greenhouse gases must be halved by 2030, and reach net zero by around the middle of the century. That is a transformative task of unprecedented proportions. It is made even greater by the need to tackle simultaneously a series of other worsening – and inter-related – global environmental problems, including biodiversity loss, soil degradation, and air and marine pollution, as documented in the 2019 reports of the…

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Do you remember the good old days…..

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The Anthropocene is a proposed new geological epoch based on the observation that human impacts on essential planetary processes have become so profound that they have driven the Earth out of the Holocene epoch in which agriculture, sedentary communities, and eventually, socially and technologically complex human societies developed. Regardless the formalization of the Anthropocene it is becoming apparent that Anthropocene conditions transgress Holocene conditions in several respects The knowledge that human activity now rivals geological forces in influencing the trajectory of the Earth System has important implications for both Earth System science and societal decision making. While recognizing that different…

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THE FUTURE OF ECOSYSTEMS AND THEIR BIOTA

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CONSIDERING GLOBAL AND REGIONAL IMPACTS OF RAPID CLIMATE CHANGE in conservation planning is a major societal challenge. Climate change is rapidly increasing in rate and magnitude and can alter the survival, fitness, phenologies and interactions of individuals, affecting population viability and food web dynamics, which in turn alter the structure and functioning of ecosystems. Climate change profoundly impacts ecosystems and their biota, resulting in range shifts, novel interactions, food web alterations, changed intensities of host–parasite interactions, and extinctions. An increasing number of studies have documented evolutionary changes in traits such as phenology and thermal tolerance. While evolutionary responses have the…

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Next society and beyond

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Society 5.0 will feature enhanced forms of robotics, AI, nanotechnology, and biotechnology, an enhanced Internet of Things, and further exploitation of Big Data. Both Industry 4.0 and Society 5.0 are premised on the creation of increasingly sophisticated cyber–physical systems, which are characterized by their reliance on embedded, decentralized, real-time computation occurring within a network of heterogeneous physical objects. When human beings (or social robots or AIs) are functionally integrated into a cyber-physical system (CPS) at the social, cognitive, and physical levels, it becomes a cyber-physical-social system (CPSS) whose members may engage in cyber-physical-social behaviors within cyber-physical spaces. Through their interactions…

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Madman

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There are people in the world who habitually say yes. And there are people who habitually say no. The people who say yes are rewarded by the adventures they get to go on, and the people who say no are rewarded by the safety they attain. We now live in a world of complex challenges, not just complicated problems. In an increasingly exponential world, there needs to be a distinct difference between our approach to tackling complex challenges as opposed to complicated problems. The future is notoriously difficult to predict. Our shortcomings in seeing and extrapolating the exponential trends that…

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Next everything….

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In addition to my writings on the Anthropocene, climate change, biophysical limits, depletion of raw materials, massive extinction of species, etc., there is a major issue that is happening right under our nose: socio-economic disparities weaken the resilience of our cities. Stretching the boundaries of my knowledge on economics and social science I dare to state that resilience can only remain useful as a concept and as progressive practice, if social dimensions are taken into account. Social-economic exclusion, disparities, inequality etc and the resulting poverty, are complex problems that manifests themselves in many different areas of life, are multidimensional and…

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Don’t tell me what you’ve done, but what are you doing and moving toward

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Ecosystems, species, wild populations, local varieties and breeds of domesticated plants and animals are shrinking, deteriorating or vanishing. The essential, interconnected web of life on Earth is getting smaller and increasingly frayed. This loss is a direct result of human activity and constitutes a direct threat to human well-being in all regions of the world. Once we’re over the threshold…you’re dealing with how the Earth works, and it goes on its own ride. CURRENT GLOBAL RESPONSE INSUFFICIENT; TRANSFORMATIVE CHANGES NEEDED Human activities are transforming Earth’s atmosphere, ocean and land surfaces at a scale and magnitude not previously seen during the…

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The promises…. the perils.

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The replacement of natural processes with synthetic ones indicates a world that is becoming increasingly more pliant and malleable. By deliberately tinkering with some of the planet’s most physical and biological operations, humans stand on the verge of turning a world that was found into a world that is made. Moreover, the new technologies driving this new epoch will not only transform how the planet looks but will drastically alter how the planet works too. In this era of the Anthropocene, humanity is rapidly altering our ecosystems and outpacing existing rates of evolution and adaptation for many organisms. Our species’…

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DE MENS

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De mens als kracht van geologische proporties Het grootste deel van de aardse biosfeer, met inbegrip van de biodiversiteit en ecosysteemdiensten- en processen, is nu definitief omgevormd door de directe interactie tussen mens en ecosystemen. Het earth system is een delicaat samenspel tussen verschillende sferen en bepaalt de voorwaarden voor het leven op aarde. Een antropogene transformatie van de terrestrische biosfeer is in essentie ingrijpend en permanent. Weinig poëtisch, maar je kan zeggen dat één enkele soort, die woekert als onkruid, onbewust het vermogen verwierf om haar eigen lot en dat van alle andere soorten op deze planeet rechtstreeks te…

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Shape-changing, selfhealing, self-assembly, intelligent movement

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No matter how far you travel, no matter in which direction you point, there is nowhere on Earth that remains free from the traces of human activity. The chemical and biological signatures of our species are everywhere. Transported around the globe by fierce atmospheric winds, relentless ocean currents, and the capacious cargo-holds of millions of fossil-fuel-powered vehicles, nowhere on Earth is free from humanity’s imprint. Pristine nature has permanently blinked out of existence. It is not just that human activities have stained every corner of the entire planet. The simultaneous arrival of a range of powerful new technologies are starting to…

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