April 28, 2008

this group focused on the energy. I must say that I thought the way that they explained. To take out all of the unnecessary work and just have pure information. I have been looking all year. I think that they should push it towards all of the other companies. However there is one drawback to this style. They gave just brief overviews of what they did. They wanted me to go through there folder. Which if I was not in class I would have done. But since I wasn't I did not go through and thus did not learn any of there specifics. The brief overview of what they did I know that they looked at technologies that focused on being sustainable with the environment. I think that from the brief glimpses that I saw they had some very interesting things/concepts. There packet seemed to fit in well with the style they were pushing. Everything you need in a small convient package. It also suggests that it skips all the useless info by being very plain and transparent. I thought they did a great job, baring the fact that I did not read all of what they had.

April 24, 2008

Goal 7

I thought they had a very interesting set up. They were covering sustainability which is a pretty big field to cover. It reaches into many different paths. I thought that they really emphasized this with the way that they presented their data. They created a web of all the info and made it appear to just keep expanding out. It was very creative, however I did not like the way that they connected it. I know that it was sustainable, but I still thought that is looked a little sloppy. The issues that they covered varied. some of them I had heard about before. For example when they said that you should try to by food that is grown closer to you. I have heard this numerous times. However they did add that on average our food is grown I think 1500 miles from where you buy it. This does make it seem like it would be cheaper to buy food that is locally grown rather then elsewhere. The group also touched on the points of global warming, water, and the ways to reduce/ ways to be more sustainable. I will be honest when I say that nothing that they told me really surprised me or was new to me. I have heard much of the same facts before. For example I believe that they said that some people dont believe in Global warming. Those people just think that it is a warming trend in the Earth. I knew this from other classes I have been taking. They did not at least to me seem to talk much about their group Northwest association. To sum up there presentation I liked their format for the booklet, just not the material that was binding it, and the their data was mildly new for me. Meaning that I had heard a majority of it before.

April 3, 2008

Pages

well there is not much to explain here. These are some of the cover pages that I thought up. I hope this works, because I have been trying to get them on here for the last two days and I am now officially out of time.

March 13, 2008

Final Assignment

Diary entry for the 17 day of March in the 2008 year,

Today I was thinking of ways to present the information that I have been gathering. one of the first that I thought of was assembling the the data into the form of a book such as this one.


One advantage of this is that all of the information would be located in a convenient form, and we could incorporate anything we found into it. However the drawback is that it would cost a lot of money, and it would not be the most effective way to spread information. This is a result of not many people reading books on how to solve world hunger that are written by college students.

Another way to present the information would be to create a blog. such as this one.
However, while it has all the positives of the book idea, and the bonus of it being free, it does have its set of drawbacks. for example it would be hard for people to find it especially if they are not sure of the title.

My group might also consider giving a presentation with a powerpoint. This is appealing due to the cost of it, and the fact that we would be able to answer any questions that might arise from the audience. However the drawback of this approach is that we would need to be there to make it truely effective. This is a problem for the future.

One last way I thought we might inform people about our data, is by writting a letter. We are trying to fix a company in Africa so they can better serve the people. What better way to due this then to write a letter.

Well I am currently out of ideas and time so I will have to leave this topic and consult with my group. until the next entry.
Dan

March 6, 2008

Our Enviroment

Diary entry for the sixth of March in the 2008 year,

I have noticed something. At first I didn't even realize it but, after a while it really sank in. We are affected a great deal by our built environment. It can be both a positive effect and a negative affect. It can both make us love life and at the same time it can make us wish we were never born.

I thought of this when I was looking at the different home that people live in. One of the first I saw was that of a mansion. I thought immediatley that the people that live there are either really important or wealthy. Possibly even both. It dawned on me that the people that live there also probably think that. So this built environment has the effect of making people feel important or wealthy. If that is good thing I guess is best left to the actions of the residents to define.

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Then I saw an image of a shack. My initial thoughts of this were almost the opposite of that when I saw the mansion. I thought that people in the shack are probably not the most important people in the world and definitely no the most wealthy people. Their environment forces this thought more on them the mansion does on its owner, in my opinion. To say that it detracts who you are might be a stretch though.

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I then started to think, what types of buildings define who I am. I lived in a rural area growing up so that meant three things. The first was I spent a lot of time in barns. I was a worker and that was where a lot of the work was. As a child I also played in these barns a great deal. They definitely define you as a farmer, or hick.

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Second, I went to church every week with my family. This my church was that of a simpler, but strong building type. This affected me in more ways than one. It sparked an interest in me for the older types of buildings and it also gave me a religion. This is probably one of the most important things in my life. I am a Lutheran so you will have to decide for yourself if that either added or detracted to me.

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And lastly I grew up in an area that had an equation to figure out the number of buildings in a town. If there were more than three houses next to each other they needed a church. and if there was a church there was a minimum of two bars in that town for every church. so needless to say I saw a lot of and spent a lot of time in bars. This affected me in ways that can not be described. Lets just say that when you are the designated driver, you see things that the drunks dont. Because of this I dont drink that much.

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So, I am pretty sure that the that built environment is phenomena that constantly affects you. It can be during a short visit to a place, or the extended stay in a mansion or shack. either way it can get down to your soul, and change you forever, or maybe just scratch you on the surface and open the way for something else. either way I have something to ponder on. Until the next entry into this mad rant.
Dan

February 28, 2008

Freedom

Diary entry for the 28th day of February of the 2008 year,

I have had it. This architectural school program is driving me crazy. I am constantly being asked to do things that to me make no sense. As I was sitting trying to complete another one of these tasks my mind, like normal, couldn't help but drift to a random thought. The thought was what would I do if I were free from this whole school entrapment.

The first thought was that I would probably burn all the books that are such a burden to me. Who cares if this was harmful to the environment. I might just say that it was my artistic way of showing the pain in my life. Thank you Andy Goldsworthy for inspiring me with temporary art work. books.jpg


Then I took the thought a little further, mainly due to the fact that it had sparked an interest and distraction from my readings. I thought that I would probably go find a piece of land in northern Minnesota.
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An area near the North Shore.

There I would design the house/Mansion of my dreams in the North Shore area. I would of course need to cut done some of the trees, but I would probably try to use them in the construction of something for this estate of mine. It would be glorious, a huge mansion were I could enjoy the splendor and majesty of the landscape of the the North shore. It would very similar to Frank Gehry's Falling Water.Western_Penn_Falling_Water.jpg


However, this sparked another thought. What would I do in this great mansion of mine. The idea of throwing massive parties was at first appealing, but then I remembered that they can be really damaging to personal property so I threw that out. As more time passed, a new thought struck me. Maybe I could start up an organization that would help raise awareness for environmental concerns. I became mildly excited with this idea until I remembered that I would be doing this from my mansion that had been cut of the forest.

It was at this point I started to doodle, and it hit me. I would more than likely draw and paint the scenes that I saw in the area. With these pictures, and paintings I could be able to help collect donations for nature preserves. It was a thought that greatly excited me. I love to draw, and be in nature and here was an opportunity for me to do both. I could even help the environment be selling them. It seemed like a win win situation. That is until I woke up from day dream by the fact that it was now 2 in the morning and I still had to read 3 chapters.

I am very tired, so if I no longer show up to classes I might just have decided to go through with this crazy plan of mine.
until the next entry
Dan

Update

So far so good is all that I can say for this project. I am assigned to the Computer Lab. While I am there I help the students to log onto a computer to play games that are educational. When there are not any kids in the room I was to test out new games that the foundation might want to purchase. Right now I am currently working on a game that helps build programing skills. I must say it very entertaining. So until the next Update that is all I can Report.
Dan

February 21, 2008

Diary entry for the 20th day of February in the Year 2008,
Today I have discovered what my goal is for my term project. I have been placed into the group that is dedicated to ending poverty and world hunger. At a first glance I thought that this was going to be a difficult one. After a little research I discovered that it will be infact extremely difficult. I saw many images such as this one.
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They are all just as disturbing as this one. Some of them are even worse. I know that it is because of these images that groups such as Band Aid created songs to support these children and people. One of the most famous is Do they know its Christmas. I discovered that 50 percent of total sales for this song are donated to charities that help the starving. I thought that this was a remarkable thing, but also one that discouraged me. If a group of superstars, albeit in the 80’s, could not make a difference how then could I. I was thinking this when I typed in starving children in Africa into the Google Machine. I was expecting more walking skeleton images that would inspire me to give it my best shot anyways. However I found this image.
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It made me change my mind instantly. If we can do this to our children then I know that we, as a country, can do something to help the other people. For example this family might consider stopping at three number 1’s instead of the normal 6 number ones. They could then send the unused money to a charity. This would help both peoples, this kid might not die of a heart attack by the age of 14, and the kids in Africa might live to be 12.
Until the next entry,
Dan

February 13, 2008

Training

I have attended the training that was required by the home work and hopes staff. I thought that it went well. I learned how the way want me to deal with the kids. Once the training session was over I was free to leave. That is all I can say for now. I hope to have more to report in the future.
Dan

Sore of Minneapolis

Diary entry 2 on the 13th day of February, in the 2008 year.
I was given the task to find social design problem in my home city of Minneapolis. This project gave me a real difficult time. I could not think of anything. I spent nights racking my brain for something, but nothing came. It was at this time that I had the thought that I might be able to think of something if I saw it happen. With this thought in mind I traveled to downtown Minneapolis.
Inspiration was still the elusive beast as I meandered the streets. I saw many things that could have troubled the hearts of some. I saw homeless people on the streets. At first I thought that perhaps this was the problem that I could help to fix. But as I walked by, I thought no. This is not what I want. Many people address this, and many of them have better thought than I. So why should waste my energy into something that people with more expertize than me can not seem to fix. With this dark thought I gave a dollar to the man and continued on my way.
I had given up trying to find a source of inspiration. Nothing was going to come to me so I decided to not worry about it. Instead I let my mind and eyes wander. They, as usual, came to rest on the beautiful buildings that decorate the landscape. These buildings were created with such a skill that it impresses me almost everytime that I gaze upon them. They also give me hope that I may one day be able to create such buildings, once my trials are done of the U. With this thought in mind I started to walk down the streets enjoying the buildings, until I saw something that made pause.
This pause was not due to the affect of seeing a building so grand that it makes you breathless. No, it was in fact quite the opposite. I saw a building that was so hideous that it made me think that it was hurting all of Minneapolis by being there. In an instant I knew what it was, and that made me even sicker. It was the Low Income housing of Riverside Plaza, more commonly known as The Crack Stacks.
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This building was created to provide people with low income a place to live. The concept was that these people have little money and need a place to survive the harsh Minnesota winters. This idea is an extremely caring thought. However what was built was definitely not.
This building was meant for poorer people, and it looks like the builders wanted to drive that fact home. It juts up from the earth, looking as hideous as can be. The siding of this building looks like the contractor went to the companies and asked for a bunch of free samples, and instead of choosing one they used them all to create it. This gives it the feel that it was just thrown together. I know that many people do not respect this building, because when I first saw it, it was introduced as the Crack Stacks. I actually had to look up the real name once I was back, because no one knew the real name. It really made think that the goal of this building was to drive home the fact that the people that live there are poorer.
It just so happened in that moment of disgust, inspiration finally paid me a visit. I thought that we as a society should not let this happen. These people have a hard enough life. Why should we make it worse by making them go that each night. We should design them a building that actually looks like a respectable home.
That was it. This was the idea that I would embrace for my blog. I think that we should renovate the building. We need to help poorer people have a respectable place to live. As of yet I have not found an organization that is willing to put the time and resources into such a task. But I will continue my search for one. Until then we will just have to deal the sore of the Minneapolis skyline.
Dan

February 5, 2008

Energy in the City.

I believe that energy and flow is very evident and alive in our cities. They are cleary shown in our forms of transportation routes. The streets can wind and twist to almost any part of the city. Some of them are even more twisted and complex then some rivers. Buildings also show energy and life. The older ones give off a feeling of the past. They make you stop and think what events that they have stood and weathered. Some of the newer buildings may also have lights and moving part incorporated into them to give them that feel of movement. They concept of transformation is also very evident. It is evident due to the fact that we keep changing our roads and buildings. If one object has grown outdated we tend to either tear it down and build something new in its place or we remodel it to suit our current needs. There is also terrible events that can transform the area such as accidents storms. These events seem to have an energy of their own. However they also seem to give the city and everything in it some of that energy. This clearly seen by the people scrambling for cover of buildings and trees being damaged by the winds. After these storms flow can be seen by the people trying to clear up the wreckage. All of these things together make up part of what we perceive as our city. It is a giant thing that has energy, flow and a sense of transformation. All of which can be viewed on a single walk, or ride down one of its many bustling streets or walkways.