Descanso Gardens Executive Director David R. Brown Announces Retirement

first_img More Cool Stuff Community News Home of the Week: Unique Pasadena Home Located on Madeline Drive, Pasadena Pasadena’s ‘626 Day’ Aims to Celebrate City, Boost Local Economy HerbeautyIs It Bad To Give Your Boyfriend An Ultimatum?HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty10 Brutally Honest Reasons Why You’re Still SingleHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty15 Countries Where Men Have Difficulties Finding A WifeHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeauty8 Gift Ideas Your New BF Will Definitely LikeHerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyThese Lipsticks Are Designed To Make Your Teeth Appear Whiter!HerbeautyHerbeautyHerbeautyWomen Love These Great Tips To Making Your Teeth Look WhiterHerbeautyHerbeauty Long-time Descanso Gardens Executive Director David R. Brown today announced his plans to retire in the coming year. He has served since 2005 as executive director of the member-supported botanic garden in La Cañada Flintridge, which is owned by the County of Los Angeles and managed by the Descanso Gardens Guild, Inc., a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization formed in 1957.With the official retirement date set at August 31, 2017, Brown will continue to oversee several high-profile projects that will launch this year. “As the board of trustees conducts the search for my successor, I plan to be as busy as ever as we debut our new seasonal production, ‘Enchanted: Forest of Light,’ celebrate the 50th anniversary of our Japanese Garden, continue with the many and fascinating aspects of our conservation and sustainability mission, and help forward the Gardens’ strategic agenda,” he said. “I’m very proud of our senior team and know they will take good care of Descanso’s day-to-day urgencies as well as the long-term course we’ve set upon.”When Brown took on Descanso Gardens’ top job in July 2005, he brought with him 35 years of experience as a writer/creative director, corporate executive, college president, and consultant to education institutions and non-profits. Prior to joining Descanso Gardens, he was the founding president of The Oxbow School in Napa, CA, following a two-year engagement by the school’s founding board as its consultant in strategic planning.He served as president and chief executive officer of Art Center College of Design in Pasadena from 1985 to 1999. During his administration, Art Center’s endowment increased nine-fold; the curriculum and program offerings grew significantly, as did financial aid availability and scholarship support. The college became the nation’s leader in the integration of digital media into both 2-D and 3-D design programs.Before being selected as the third president in Art Center’s history, he was a corporate executive in the paper and forest products industry on the East Coast and, prior to that, a freelance writer and creative director in New York. A native of Maine, Brown and his wife, Judith, are longtime residents of Pasadena, where they raised their three children and remain active in the community.Reflecting on his tenure at Descanso Gardens, he said, “It’s been a sheer pleasure. It is truly a lovely and much-loved place: I’ve probably been told a thousand times what a beautiful ‘office’ I have to work in! Equally lovely has been the generous community and philanthropic support we’ve received as we guided Descanso into some new and important directions over the past decade.”Highlights of Brown’s tenure have included the restoration of the historic Boddy House and surrounding gardens (2007-08); addition of the Sturt Haaga Gallery (2011) and development of its curatorial direction; addition of new gardens and displays such as the Oak Woodland (2014) and Ancient Forest (2015); creation of a Long Range Concept Plan (2010); addition of extended summer hours and the popular midweek evening concert series; emphasis on sustainable practices and water conservation; increases in admissions and visitation; successful conclusion of a new 15-year operating agreement with Los Angeles County; and the more than doubling of the membership base to its current 14,500 members.“Descanso Gardens gives hundreds of thousands of people every year the opportunity to enjoy a unique setting in nature and, we hope, become more attuned to the urgent environmental and global issues of our time,” says Brown. “Always an oasis of respite and beauty, I hope Descanso can also be seen as a positive role model for the good stewardship of our land and our naturally occurring resources, including the best we can mine from our history.”The Descanso Gardens Guild Inc. board of trustees has formed a transition committee to coordinate the national search for his successor.Descanso Gardens, 1418 Descanso Drive, La Canada Flintridge, (818) 949-4290 or visit www.descansogardens.org. Pasadena Will Allow Vaccinated People to Go Without Masks in Most Settings Starting on Tuesday faithfernandez More » ShareTweetShare on Google+Pin on PinterestSend with WhatsApp,Donald CommunityPCC- COMMUNITYVirtual Schools PasadenaHomes Solve Community/Gov/Pub SafetyPasadena Public WorksCitizen Service CenterPASADENA EVENTS & ACTIVITIES CALENDARClick here for Movie Showtimes Community News Top of the News First Heatwave Expected Next Week center_img 0 commentsShareShareTweetSharePin it Business News Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked * Name (required)  Mail (required) (not be published)  Website  Community News Descanso Gardens Executive Director David R. Brown Announces Retirement From STAFF REPORTS Published on Thursday, October 6, 2016 | 11:06 am Get our daily Pasadena newspaper in your email box. Free.Get all the latest Pasadena news, more than 10 fresh stories daily, 7 days a week at 7 a.m. EVENTS & ENTERTAINMENT | FOOD & DRINK | THE ARTS | REAL ESTATE | HOME & GARDEN | WELLNESS | SOCIAL SCENE | GETAWAYS | PARENTS & KIDS Subscribe Make a commentlast_img read more

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New York legalizes recreational marijuana, expunges former pot convictions

first_imgNastasic/iStockBy Ivan Pereira, ABC News(NEW YORK) — The New York state legislature formally voted to legalize and regulate recreational marijuana for adults and expunge the records of people previously convicted of possession.Shortly after 10:30 p.m. Tuesday night, the New York State Assembly voted 100-49 to pass the marijuana legalization bill.Gov. Andrew Cuomo has previously said he will sign the bill into law once it reaches his desk, and on Tuesday night, he reiterated that plan.“Tonight, the New York State Legislature took the first step in a major leap forward for the Empire State by passing legislation to legalize adult-use cannabis,” he said in a statement. “For too long the prohibition of cannabis disproportionately targeted communities of color with harsh prison sentences and after years of hard work, this landmark legislation provides justice for long-marginalized communities, embraces a new industry that will grow the economy, and establishes substantial safety guards for the public.”“New York has a storied history of being the progressive capital of the nation, and this important legislation will once again carry on that legacy,” he added. “I look forward to signing this legislation into law.”Under the final legislation, 3 ounces of marijuana will be legal to possess for New Yorkers over 21 and the substance will have a 13% sales tax. The tax revenues will be broken up with 9% going to the state and 4% going to localities, according to the legislation.Jawanza James Williams, the director of organizing at VOCAL-NY, said in a statement Tuesday night, “Today, the Assembly and the Senate modeled what democracy actually looks like when the legislature allows progressive movements to lead towards justice. Our movement did not fight simply for legalization’s sake, but worked for years to craft legislation rooted in racial and economic justice, in an effort to repair harms while also setting a new standard for anti-racist, class-conscious, and gender-expansive policymaking.”“This is a massive success for all New Yorkers, especially the Black and brown survivors of racist prohibition,” Williams added.The governor’s office said as many as 60,000 new jobs could be created and the state will generate $350 million in revenue annually, as a result of the new laws.Residents will also be allowed to grow marijuana at home, with a limit of three mature plants for adults over 21 and six mature plants per household.Anyone previously convicted of possessing an amount of marijuana now under the legal limit will automatically be subject to expungement and resentencing.“We applaud the New York Legislature and the tireless work of advocates for their commitment to ending cannabis prohibition through a social justice-centered approach,” said Steve Hawkins, executive director at the Marijuana Policy Project. “We expect 2021 to be a record-breaking year for legislatures legalizing cannabis. More than two-thirds of Americans believe it’s time to end prohibition and this move represents the latest example of elected officials joining the chorus of support for legalizing and regulating cannabis for adults.”Once the bill is signed, New York will be the 15th state to allow for recreational marijuana among adults. Voters chose to legalize marijuana in South Dakota last year, but the amendment is currently tied up in court.The legislation will create the Office of Cannabis Management, which will regulate the sale and distribution of both recreational and medical marijuana, which was legalized in 2014.A five-member board will lead the office with three members appointed by the governor and one appointed by each house of the legislature, according to the legislation.Sales might not start until 2022, as the state will take time to establish its regulatory framework, legislative sources told ABC News.“The legalization of marijuana is a racial and criminal justice imperative, and today’s vote is a critical step towards a fairer and more just system,” New York Attorney General Letitia James said in a statement. “For too long, people of color have been disproportionately impacted by an outdated and shortsighted marijuana prohibition, and it’s past time we right this wrong. We must also engineer an economy that will provide a much-needed boost to communities devastated by the war on drugs and COVID-19, and I am hopeful this will help to achieve that for New Yorkers.”Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

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Fiji deports university leader in blow to regional relations

first_imgWELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — Fiji has deported the leader of the University of the South Pacific and his wife in a move that threatens to tear apart regional relationships. Vice-Chancellor Pal Ahluwalia says about 15 government agents surrounded their house at night and gave them minutes to pack before they were hastily deported to Australia. Ahluwalia says he’s been uncovering corruption at the university, but other administrators say there have been management lapses under his leadership. Fiji’s government has only cited violations of an immigration law that says foreigners cannot breach the peace and good government of Fiji. The University of the South Pacific is jointly owned by 12 countries and serves 28,000 students over a geographic area three times the size of Europe.last_img read more

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Thurston EDC Business Recognition Awards Gala and Investor Dinner May 19

first_imgFacebook13Tweet0Pin0Submitted by Thurston Economic Development CouncilThe Thurston Economic Development Council announced the finalists for the upcoming Business Recognition Awards. The Awards Gala and Investor Dinner will take place on May 19, 2017 beginning at 5:30 p.m. with reception and program/dinner following at 6:30 p.m. at the Olympia County & Golf Club, 3636 Country Club Rd NW Olympia, WA 98502.This is the 32nd year the Thurston EDC will host the awards, which honors the achievements of local businesses and non-profits in four distinct categories: New Business, Small Business, Corporate Employer, and Non-Profit Organization.New Business of the Year Finalists include:Broth Bar by SaltFire & Time222 Marketplace LLCChelsea Farms Oyster BarThe Mouse Trap and Blind Pig SpiritsFinalists for Small Business of the Year are:PCI Pest ControlNorthAmericaTalk, Inc.Zoe Juice BarNon-Profit of the Year Finalists include:Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southwest WashingtonCapital LakefairPacific Mountain Workforce Development CouncilCorporate Employer of the Year finalists are:Olympia Federal SavingsAtlas Dental GroupZiemek Dental Laboratory, Inc.The Business Recognition Awards Gala and Investor Dinner is open to the public and will include an awards program that tells the story of each of the finalists and opportunities to network. To register for the 2017 Business Recognition Awards and Investor Gala, or become a sponsor, please contact Michael Cade at 360-464-6041 or visit the Thurston Economic Development Council’s website. The cost is $65 per person or $500 for a table of eight.About the Thurston Economic Development CouncilThe Thurston EDC is a private non-profit organization focused on creating a vital and sustainable economy in Thurston County that supports the livelihood and values of our residents.last_img read more

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U14 Selects enjoy taste of Kootenay South Gold

first_imgBy The Nelson Daily SportsThe roundball season is in full swing and so is the Nelson U14 Selects.The Reps blasted Kootenay South 6-0 en route to the gold medal in the U14 Boys Division at the KSYSA 16th Annual Boys Tournament Sunday at Mozzochi Park in Fruitvale.Micah May scored three times and James Miller added a pair to lead the Reps to the convincing victory.Dunavan Morris-Jansen scored the final tally for Nelson.“In the close games we maintained most of the possession but we just couldn’t finish and even when we were down our boys just kept at it,” said Nelson coach Dan Szabo.“Their perseverance paid off, they didn’t quit. Once they found the net you could just see the confidence build.”The Selects opened the tournament by rallying back to edge Kootenay South 3-2. Trailing 1-0, Spencer Szabo tied the game on a penalty kick. Kootenay South restored the lead before May pulled the team even again. Nicholas Wethal notched the game winner with just minutes to play.In the afternoon game, the Reps blasted Creston 9-0. James Miller scored three times for Nelson with the remaining goals going to May, Szabo, Keaton Roch and Sam Woodward.Sunday, Nelson advanced to the final by edging Kootenay East Rovers of Cranbrook 3-1. Once again the Selects needed to comeback after being down 1-0.But goals from Morris-Jansen and Tucker Anderson, followed up by an insurance marker by Dylan Bennett, allowed the Selects to pull out the victory.“This was a very important weekend for (the players),” Szabo explained. “The boys have grown and are now, truly, a ‘team’. I couldn’t be happier for them.”Despite scoring more than 20 goals, Szabo was impressed by the strong play of the defensive line.“Much of the credit goes to our fullbacks,” he said. “Johnny Johnson, Theo Bakas and Nick Wethal were a force back there and (goalkeeper) Harrison Giles made some terrific saves.“That guy is a walking Tide commercial.”The Reps have a week off before traveling to Coeur d’Alene, Idaho for a rep tournament during the May long weekend.  [email protected]last_img read more

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Blues ‘in talks to sign rising star’

first_imgChelsea are reportedly in talks to sign Lucas Moura, one of the rising stars of Brazilian football, who is understood to have a £66.8m release clause in his contract at Sao Paulo.AVB is keen on Hulk.The Daily Telegraph suggest Chelsea will not pay anywhere near that amount for the 19-year-old midfielder and are unlikely to table a bid before the transfer window closes, but may renew their interest during the summer.The Daily Mail report that Alex is close to completing his move to Paris St-Germain from Chelsea, whose owner Roman Abramovich has apparently blocked manager Andre Villas-Boas’ move for Porto striker Hulk after being quoted a world-record £83m.Willian has told The Sun he is desperate to leave Shakhtar Donetsk and sign for Chelsea.“Chelsea are known as one of the biggest and most successful clubs around,” said the Brazilian.“To play for them is a challenge I would accept and enjoy. If a deal doesn’t go through, I’ll understand. But I hope it happens.”French media yesterday reported that Nancy’s Mali international midfielder Samba Diakité is close to completing a loan move to QPR.Rangers boss Hughes has been linked with numerous players.The Mail pick up on this and add that Rangers are interested in Wigan’s Victor Moses.The Daily Mirror say QPR boss Mark Hughes is ready to launch a £4m bid for Moses’ Wigan’s team-mate Hugo Rodallega, whose contract expires at the end of the season. West Ham are also said to be interested.The Mirror also say QPR are monitoring Carlton Cole’s situation at West Ham and that Fulham are still interested in £7m-rated FC Twente winger Nacer Chadli.Finally, the Telegraph believe Anton Ferdinand will seek the advice of QPR chairman Tony Fernandes before deciding whether to shake John Terry’s hand before this weekend’s game against Chelsea.Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

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Crime in South Africa

first_imgLorraine Kearney and Janine ErasmusCrime hogs the headlines in South Africa, and the country’s reputation as a crime capital stretches far and wide. But according to the South African Police Service (SAPS), crime is on a downward trend. And South Africa’s Institute for Security Studies (ISS) backs this up.On 9 September 2010 the SAPS released the national crime statistics for the year 1 April 2009 to 31 March 2010. There were decreases in the three significant contact crime categories of murder, attampted murder and robbery with aggravating circumstances. For the first time since the establishment of the South African Police Service in 1995/1996, murder dropped to below 17 000 incidents. Metro police staff a road block inJohannesburg, Gauteng.(Image: Chris Kirchhoff,MediaClubSouthAfrica.com. For morefree photos, visit the image library)In all but one of the SAPS’s seven contact crime categories, crime decreased over the previous year. Contact crime is defined as violent crime against the person. An increase of 1% was recorded in the incidence of common assault.Of the categories that decreased, murder showed the greatest decline – dropping 8.6% – and assault with GBH the smallest – dropping 0.5%. Aggravated robbery dropped by 7.5%, while attempted murder dropped by 6.1% and common robbery by 4.1%. In total, contact crime dropped by 4.3% compared to 6.4% over the previous period.Dr Johan Burger, a senior researcher in the crime and justice programme at the ISS, says the 2010 crime statistics were proof that something positive was happening, and that research should be conducted to identify other factors that had contributed to the improvement in the crime statistics.The results of the ISS’s National Victims of Crime Survey 2003 seem to support the SAPS figures. It found that 23% of South Africans were victims of crime between September 2002 and August 2003, down almost 2% from 24.5% in 1998.It did, however, find that people’s feelings of safety decreased. The number feeling unsafe at night had more than doubled from 25% in 1998 to 53% in 2003.“It is an international experience that about 50% of all crimes are not reported,” Burger says. In its survey, the ISS found that 97% of car thefts were reported, for example. Cars are normally insured and to make a claim, an owner must have a police reference number. On the other hand, only 29% of ordinary robbery was reported.It is estimated that 30% to 60% of rape is not reported, Burger says, adding that women simply do not want to go through the trauma of reporting it and facing a court case if the rapist is caught.Joan van Niekerk, the director of Childline, also has no quibble with the reporting system of counting crimes committed, which looks at the dockets opened, but people are often turned away by the police, she says.“People who know about organisations like us, and are sufficiently empowered, call us. According to research by the Medical Research Council, just one in nine rapes are reported, while Centre for Justice and Crime Prevention research found that one in nine children report crime.These findings may not reflect the current situation, as the ISS has not conducted another Victims of Crime survey since 2003.last_img read more

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Brand South Africa’s provincial programme goes to the North West province

first_imgJohannesburg, Tuesday 10 November – Brand South Africa and a range of stakeholders in the North West will come together in Mahikeng on Wednesday 11 November 2015 to deliberate on the province’s competitive strengths.The North West programme is part of Brand South Africa’s provincial programme which aims to assess the ways in which provinces contribute to national competitiveness. In this regard, Brand South Africa has been engaging with various other provincial role players in the past year.The discussions in Mahikeng will be attended by representatives of government, business and civil society.Brand South Africa will also share with participants the nation brand corporate identity toolkit to enable a cohesive image of South Africa to be projected on a range of communication platforms.All inputs from the workshop will contribute to Brand South Africa’s efforts to position the country as a competitive investment destination.Media are invited to attend the workshop as follows:Date: Wednesday 11 NovemberTime: 09h00Venue: Mmabatho Palms Hotel, Nelson Mandela Drive, MahikengEnquiries/RVSP: Manusha Pillai on [email protected] 082 389 3587Follow the conversation on #CompetitiveSAlast_img read more

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Ripened with wisdom…

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest In the Opening Ceremonies of the FFA, the adviser is stationed “by the owl, a time honored emblem of knowledge and wisdom.” The adviser then explains “being older than the rest of you, I am asked to advise you from time to time as the need arises. I hope that my advice will always be based on true knowledge and ripened with wisdom.”Those words were the first things that came to mind when my brother called to tell me that Clair Jones was in hospice at his home. Mr. Jones was the FFA adviser for my brother, my husband and I, as well as countless others from 36 years of teaching vocational agriculture. We stopped to see him that evening, and the memories started flowing.Kent noticed the kitchen table that he and untold others had sat at while working on State Farmer degrees, American Farmer degrees, proficiency awards and judging contest preparations. In the days before computer generated applications, Clair had a very successful system in place that guaranteed his students would excel in competitions. His work day extended far past the close of school. As a vo-ag teacher, he worked with students on their projects, visited them at their homes and places of work, advised the FFA Chapter and worked to make each student a success. And his former students include veterinarians, business owners, professors, farmers, engineers, doctors, lawyers, accountants, and the list goes on and on and on.Clair was probably one of the brightest people I ever met. He was also a bit eccentric. Above all, he had a passion for agriculture and understanding its history and its future. One day, shortly after I married Kent, he stopped for a visit around our kitchen table. He reminisced through 25 years of teaching in Celina, 10 years in St. Henry and a year in McComb. Those 36 years provided him an insight and comprehension of agriculture in this county that was unsurpassed.In the FFA Opening Ceremony, the President asks, “FFA Members, why are we here? To practice brotherhood, honor agriculture opportunities and responsibilities and develop those qualities of leadership which an FFA member should possess.”That sentence sums up precisely the difference in taking vo-ag from Mr Jones. Not only did a student learn genetics, agronomy, animal science, nutrition, welding, small engines, woodshop, etc., but also the student gained experience in public speaking, leadership activities, team contests, individual competition and supervised occupational experience projects that put into practice what was learned in class. And Mr. Jones’ students excelled at the state and national level, under his guidance.Kent recalls Mr. Jones teaching him how to judge dairy cattle in the annual Hoard’s Dairy Judging Contest. Clair suggested that it was always advantageous to look at the problem from a new perspective. When the pictures of the cows were turned upside down, different details of important judging points emerged. What a valuable life lesson!He advised a new teacher about how to succeed at the high school. His counsel was to stay out of the main office and make sure you get along with the janitors and the cafeteria staff because they keep the school running.When Mr. Jones retired from teaching, he did not retire from agriculture. He worked as a certified seed inspector for Mercer, Auglaize, Van Wert and Darke Counties. He also worked at the Neptune Elevator and the Mercer County Elks Golf Club.Clair S. Jones, 85, passed away on May 21, 2016, surrounded by his family. He was preceded in death by his wife of 60 years, Donna, who died in 2014. He is survived by a daughter, Patty, son-in-law, Thomas Buening, five grandchildren, one great grandson, a brother and two sisters. Clair was very proud of his family. They clearly shared his intelligence and passion for life. Patty did a beautiful job of taking care of her parents, while teaching in Columbus. She hired the best home health care workers who enabled Clair and Donna to remain in their home.The FFA Closing Ceremony states “as we mingle with others, let us be diligent in labor, just in our dealings, courteous to everyone and above all, honest and fair in the game of life.” Wise words that I saw come to life in my FFA adviser, Mr. Clair Jones. Thank you, Clair.last_img read more

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Lesson From Burning Man: The Social Network Is All Around You

first_imgEvery year at Burning Man, I have the same argument. Someone plays the role of the starry-eyed futurist, someone else is the grizzly survivalist. The futurist says, “If only we had map and chat apps out here, we could meet everyone and see everything! It would be a utopia!” The survivalist says “Hell no. We come out here to get away from all that.” At Burning Man, as in everyday urban life, the answer lies somewhere in between.I think what scares the grizzly survivalist (which was me this year) is the notion of burners walking around Black Rock City peering down their arms at the glow of a smartphone instead of looking around at the people and the spectacle. It’s already happening to some extent. Now that smartphones are many people’s primary camera, people have them out even without a data connection.That’s bad enough. On Saturday night, when the Man burns, it’s hard to see the real thing through the forest of arms holding up phones and cameras in front of you. I understand why people want a document of this mind-blowing event, but how many (thousand) copies do we need? The grizzly survivalist worries about the spirit of those spectators who watch life through the screens rather than connecting directly through their optic nerves.There are Burning Man-specific apps, like iBurn, but I have never seen the thing in use. Frankly, I hope I never do. Black Rock City is designed to be dead easy to navigate, and Burning Man is the best place in the world to ask for directions. It doesn’t even matter where somebody sends you; you’re going to like it.Meeting People Is EasyThe topic of social networking also comes up inevitably in Burning Man’s annual tech conversation. There are too many cool people there to meet them all, the reasoning goes. Wouldn’t a little app with searchable profile pages, photos, lists of interests, events and messaging help us have the best possible time?If you ask me, the repeated failures in the meeting-people app category in general should be enough of a lesson. People don’t like meeting people this way. It locks you into plans and creates pressure to be in specific places at specific times, all for the uncertain payoff of meeting someone you only know as a performance of social media skills.But that’s hardly the biggest issue. At Burning Man, anything that keeps you from physically approaching a person and saying hello is a problem. The social network is implicit there. Burning Man is a gathering of collaborators. Everyone is a partner working together on building and maintaining a city that’s also an art project. You’ll have something to talk about with them, so just do it.It seems to me that we’d do well to treat every urban encounter this way. Just because Burning Man is explicitly an arts festival doesn’t mean that Manhattan or San Francisco can’t be regarded as collaborative works in progress.Art is a critical part of any shared civic space because it gives people something to talk about. It contributes to a shared identity. Art is a technology for creating networks of people nearby. And the best part is that they share the experience, rather than each having their own glowing, 4-inch window on it.Building A LighthouseAmber Case posed a question that perfectly framed this issue on the urban design website Smart Urban Stage: “How do we make public areas where strangers are encouraged to communicate with each other instead of stare into screens?”She laments the fact that “modern cities are full of ‘non-places’ – locations where people are strangers to one another and have no impetus to interact.” Cell phones provide a “comfortable lighthouse in a sea of uncertain social situations” in our dislocated urban lives.Case asks for a way to reconstruct public spaces that encourages interaction, and Charlie Todd of Improv Everywhere gives some great examples. The NYC-based group he founded stages fun “missions” to snap people out of their urban isolation. 12 Unique Gifts for the Hard-to-Shop-for People… 9 Books That Make Perfect Gifts for Industry Ex… 4 Keys to a Kid-Safe App Tags:#art#Pause#web 5 Outdoor Activities for Beating Office Burnoutcenter_img Certainly, Improv Everywhere is a troupe after a burner’s own heart. In fact, if you drop the capital letters, “improv everywhere” is a pretty apt description of Burning Man itself. But human hacks of dreary city spaces can’t finish the job. Burning Man artist-architects build physical spaces intentionally to contain and stimulate fully human encounters, and I think our cities need those as well.Keeping A PortalJust about any structure at Burning Man can serve as an example, but one artist’s work consistently means the most to me. Harlan Emil Gruber’s portals are “evolutionary technology” designed to power up the people inside and bring them together. You spot them out on the playa as brightly colored, intriguingly shaped shelters. You climb up into a space big enough to hold 10 or 12 people, and you instantly relax. The whole structure purrs with the sound of the Quasar Wave Transducer, a musical device of Gruber’s own design. That tone serves as a baseline. It grounds everyone inside to the same frequency. It brings us in tune with one another.I’ve had countless life-changing encounters in these portals over the five years I’ve been going to Burning Man. This year, I stayed in the 12:21 Turquoise Portal overnight twice, and you can read about those weird trips over on the official Burning Blog. I’m pretty heavily steeped in technology, and nothing I’ve seen, hardware or software, has affected me as profoundly.My friend Randall, with whom I hung out in last year’s 2:22 Amethyst Portal, wants Quasar Wave Transducers installed in bus hutches and subway stations. Artist Christopher Janney has a head start; he installed an “urban musical instrument” called Reach New York in an NYC subway station in 1996. If you’re a technologist looking for a way to bring people together, consider expanding your view. We don’t just need more apps. We need interactive public spaces. That’s how you network with the people around you.Jon also writes for the official Burning Man blog. Check out his entries here. Related Posts jon mitchelllast_img read more

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