The Story of Stuff

Click here for captioned versions and the website with other “Story of…” videos. 

(Source: storyofstuff.org)

Watch this video.


An ode to resilience
This week, cartoonist Patrick Blower explores the theme of civilisation v nature


There are some things I really like about this video:
The idea of reorganization after a collapse - this is an important component of one of my fave systems theories, Panarchy.
The recognition that we need to see densification in urban centers instead of the continuation of sprawl - Building UP, not OUT.
Some interesting ideas about future trends in architecture…
This is obviously only one possible future out of infinite possibilities. These are some things I don’t love about the video:
The idea that there has to be total environmental and social devastation before things get better.
The idea of Civilization VS. Nature. As far as I’m concerned humans are a part of nature and thus are our civilizations. I admit, we might be nature’s oopsy-doodle, but if we adopted more of the patterns seen in nature instead of rejecting them, we could come up with some really nifty solutions.
And a couple questions I have:
There seems to be a very physical hierarchy in this future city. Who will live in the dark depths? 
How do we ensure that current systems perpetuating inequality are not carried through to this possible future city?
Side Note 
Resilience is the new sustainability. It is the catch phrase of the day and all things sustainable are on the way out. For more about urban resilience specifically, check out this page from the Resilience Alliance.

Watch this video.

An ode to resilience

This week, cartoonist Patrick Blower explores the theme of civilisation v nature

There are some things I really like about this video:

  • The idea of reorganization after a collapse - this is an important component of one of my fave systems theories, Panarchy.
  • The recognition that we need to see densification in urban centers instead of the continuation of sprawl - Building UP, not OUT.
  • Some interesting ideas about future trends in architecture…

This is obviously only one possible future out of infinite possibilities. These are some things I don’t love about the video:

  • The idea that there has to be total environmental and social devastation before things get better.
  • The idea of Civilization VS. Nature. As far as I’m concerned humans are a part of nature and thus are our civilizations. I admit, we might be nature’s oopsy-doodle, but if we adopted more of the patterns seen in nature instead of rejecting them, we could come up with some really nifty solutions.

And a couple questions I have:

  • There seems to be a very physical hierarchy in this future city. Who will live in the dark depths? 
  • How do we ensure that current systems perpetuating inequality are not carried through to this possible future city?

Side Note 

Resilience is the new sustainability. It is the catch phrase of the day and all things sustainable are on the way out. For more about urban resilience specifically, check out this page from the Resilience Alliance.

This is my blog about the world.

About Futurephilia

This blog is for me.  It is part of an intentional attempt to regain the hope I have lost.  It’s evident that the world is going to shit.  Environmental, social, econonomic problems are all adding up, and when problems add up they make a Problem - bigger and more incomprehensible than the sum of of all the individual problems. I believe we are at a serious, SERIOUS tipping point.  I mean the hugest, most explosive climax you can imagine but on a global, nay, galactic scale.  I believe things are going to get much much worse than they are now, but I also think this can be a good thing.  We need big changes, ones that happen as a result of many small actions across different scales of time and space.

I believe these changes are happening.  This blog is dedicated to the love of future, I am a futurephile, a lover of the future and the earth that will make a decent future possible. Futurephilia will highlight stories that give me a sense of optimism about the direction we are moving in.

"We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them."

 -Albert Einstein

I think systems thinking will bring a stop to the vicious cycle that the world’s most fave genius was getting at there.  I love the interconnectivity of, well, EVERYTHING, and so you will be seeing a lot of that on this blog.  It might seem random that I include posts about crazy weather patterns, design, advancements in environmental technologies, feminist theory, economics, science, anti-science, art, love and my love, architecture, insects, businesses, cool people, politics, …. ETC.  But this is not random because everything is connected. SYSTEMS YAH!  

About Me:

I am Maya.  I live on the west coast of British Columbia and grew up with a strong appreciation and curiosity about the natural environment.  I was that weird kid who was best friends with their dog and preferred to tend to an insect collection, build a castle in a decaying stump, or take a mouse up to the best tree house in the world (which, in retrospect, was just a platform but much loved by child-me and a family of raccoons for many years).

While completing a seven-year undergrad degree in environmental studies and geography I learned all sorts of crazy shit about the state of the world, but came out relatively hopeful for the future.  It has only been in the last few years while working and observing and learning that I have noticed the optimism of my youth mutate into some weird combination of fear, pessimism and denial.  There is still some hope in there though, I swear.


Eyjafjallajökull Volcano, Iceland

Photograph by Sigurdur Hrafn Stefnisson

This Month in Photo of the Day: National Geographic Magazine Features

Lightning veins the Eyjafjallajökull volcano’s ash plume, which roiled air travel this spring. Such “dirty thunderstorms” may occur when rock and ice particles loosed by exploding magma collide in the atmosphere.

(Source: National Geographic)

Majora Carter gives me tremendous hope for the future with her ideas about eco-entrepreneurship and how we can solve environmental and social problems with the same solutions. 

It’s time to stop building the shopping malls, the prisons, the stadiums and other tributes to all of our collective failures. It is time that we start building living monuments to hope and possibility.

(Source: ted.com)