This year's Cooper Hewitt Design Triennial features plants that have been injected with nanoparticles that make them glow, which the researchers behind them think might help us reconsider lighting design. (Courtesy MIT)

MIT researchers think glowing plants could reshape our relationship to the built environment

Researchers at MIT have discovered a way to turn plants into sources of light and are imagining a new conception of architecture revolving around them. By Drew Zeiba Could the solution to more sustainable buildings be what’s planted in and around them? Researchers at MIT have...
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Courtesy MIT In field tests, the performance of the radiative cooling device was measured under full sunlight, both with the insulating material in place (left) and without it (right).

This Week in Tech: Tesla’s latest residential solar panels, plus…

A Smart Forest City in Mexico, next steps for Sidewalk Labs’ Toronto Waterfront, and more design-tech news from this week. By Katharine Keane Elon Musk–led Tesla has unveiled new designs for its residential solar roofing tiles. The updated tempered glass tiles will be...
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MIT tech

MIT researchers find new approach suggesting path to emissions-free cement

cement is the world’s leading construction material — but did you know producing it is one of the major sources of greenhouse gas emissions accounting for about 8 percent of all such releases? this means that if cement production were a country, it would be the world’s...
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MIT designed the programmable ink, which it has named PhotoChromeleon

MIT creates reprogrammable ink to make objects change colour

Consumers could change the colour of their cars, shoes, clothes or other belongings at will, using a new light-responsive ink from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Rima Sabina Aouf Consumers could change the colour of their cars, shoes, clothes or other belongings at...
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Caitlin Mueller uses robotic 3-D printing to test architectural designs for non-standard elements, such as these culled tree limbs used to build a trellis. Photo: Alan Silfen

MIT’s Caitlin Mueller uses digital tools to link architecture, engineering

CAMBRIDGE, MA–Caitlin Mueller is an associate professor in the Building Technology Program at MIT, where she leads the Digital Structures research group. By Boston Real Estate Times Her goal is to employ machine learning to support the design process from both an architectural...
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It takes just ten taxis to cover as much as a third of Manhattan in a single day, opening up new possibilities for mobile sensing. (Courtesy MIT Senseable City Lab)

Can you capture a portrait of a city with a taxi-mounted sensor?

How can cities collect the urban data they need to make decisions? MIT’s Senseable City Lab affixed sensors to taxis to collect that information. By Drew Zeiba Big data and its purported utility comes with the attendant need to actually collect that data in the first place,...
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MIT Self-Assembly Lab

In the Maldives, MIT experiment fights rising sea levels with nature

Growing Islands harness natural wave forces to build underwater sand buffers By Liz Stinson As our environmental prognosis grows increasingly grim, designers have started to think about ways to mitigate what feels like an an inevitable crash course with nature. Cities along the...
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MIT's Self-Assembly Lab is experimenting with growing islands and coastlines in the Maldives

MIT’s Self-Assembly Lab proposes new way of growing islands and coastlines

Researchers at MIT and in the Maldives have come up with a solution to help coastal communities threatened by climate change: submersible objects carefully placed to promote the growth of beaches and islands. Rima Sabina Aouf Researchers at MIT and in the Maldives have come up...
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images courtesy of matter design

MIT researchers discover way to move 25 ton stones with only their hands

kieron marchese cambridge-based firm matter design has unveiled research on seemingly ‘weightless’ concrete forms that can be easily moved. realised in collaboration with construction-research company CEMEX global R&D, the pair have discovered a way of rotating mammoth stones...
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MIT surveys two million people to set out ethical framework for driverless cars

Self-driving cars should swerve to protect young people over the elderly and humans over animals, according to a global survey of more than two million people conducted by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Rima Sabina Aouf Self-driving cars should swerve...
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