June 8, 2012

Rural Studio: Bryant (Hay Bale) House

The Bryant House, finished in 1994 was the Rural Studio's first completed building. The Bryant household, Shepard and Alberta with their grandchildren lived in a rickety shack without heat or plumbing and enough holes to let in rain, insects and reptile visitors. When the structure was about to collapse, the Hale County's Department of Human Services told Samuel Mockbee about his situation and Mockbee asked Shepard if they could help.

June 7, 2012

Rural Studio: The Yancey Chapel

In 1994, while fifth year student Ruard Veltman and Mockbee were admiring the light filtering through the bottles embedded in Shepard Bryant's smoke house, Veltman said his thesis group wanted to "do something like this" for their thesis project, Mockbee replied: "Why don't y'all build a chapel?" Soon afterwards, Mockbee was talking to an Auburn University supporter and cow farmer, Lemuel Morrison where she offered to let the students build the chapel on her Sawyerville farm to help lower building costs.

Solution to Your Home's "Phantom Current Load"

The likely culprit resulting in 'phantom current loads' in the home are electronics. When a TV or monitor are plugged in they are in standby mode requiring some electricity. These devices, as well as any chargers you might have are always on, even if the device is off or not charging resulting in the phantom current load or current load leakage. Electronics are dc not ac and thus requite a transformer to lower the voltage from 120 to around 9V and they all have one. Stereos, DVD players, printers, etc. all contain transformers and as a result are on even while they're off.  Standby mode on devices implies that a small current passes through a device to allow it to be turned on by a remote, so if it gets turned on by a remote, it is costing you money even when it is 'off.

June 3, 2012

Urban Sprawl: London after WWII

Screenshot from the following video from the BBC

Story: Birth of the New Town

Duration: 3:48

After World War II, London was threatened by endless urban sprawl, the government's solution was the introduction of greenbelts surrounding the city. New towns such as Harlow in East Anglia were created outside the greenbelt, complete with its own housing, commercial and manufacturing.

June 2, 2012

Bike Share System by RAFAA

New Bike Share System in Copenhagen by RAFAA

The Zurich based architect and designer Rafael Schmidt, along with his Studio RAFAA, won the Reddot Design Award in 2010.