Shared Backyard Design Presentation: An Example of Fresh Design Ideas In Northampton

The Whoo Space on Market St, has been host to a variety of community events, from an art exhibit of handmade books to campaign headquarters for Arnold Levinson in this years past Ward 3 Special Election. This past Tuesday was no different when University of Massachusetts’s Permaculture Program, in conjunction with Creative Community Collective, and a number of local residents hosted a presentation on shared community space. According to C3’s website, “three Northampton neighbors decided to take their fences down and combine their yards to create a larger space for shared recreation and food production.” The goal was to create a Permaculture site, which C3 defines as: …a vision, design system, and global network that draws on patterns and principles found in nature to meet human needs, while regenerating the natural world and creating abundance we can share. The students redesigned the shared backyards into a sustainable open space,  taking down the barriers of the three neighboring backyards and integrating them into one cohesive shared area for recreation and sustainable gardens. The goal is to inspire others in the community to open to the idea of turning neighboring land into shared space for the community to gather around. The presentation consisted of a number of design possibilities. The various options which the team of UMass students had assembled ranged from the more conservative rearrangement of bushes and minor terraforming to the highly progressive, with much of the shared backyards transformed into a super efficient organic farm powered by animals complete with rice paddies and greenhouses heated by chickens. Owen Freeman-Daniels, newly elected Ward 3 City Councilman, owns a condo on part of...

12-Year-Old App Developer

Here’s a fun bit of news: The Philippine Star ran an article on November 15, 2010 about a 12 year old Indonesian boy, Fahma Waluya Rosmansyah, who programs in his spare time. His platform of choice? Adobe Flash for use on cell phones. The applications he has made thus far are impressive. Fahma’s games are intended to help Indonesian children learn English and mathematics. This year Fahma was recognized with an Indonesia ICT...

Personal Heroes: Douglas Rushkoff

This week we are blogging about our personal heroes. Who’s yours? by: Jason Who: Douglas Rushkoff Occupation: Media theorist Most notable accomplishments: Coined the terms “viral media”, “digital native”, and “social currency” Prizes & recognitions: Rushkoff Serves on the Board of Directors of the Media Ecology Association, The Center for Cognitive Liberty and Ethics, and is a founding member of the Advisory Board of The National Association for Media Literacy Education and MeetUp.com He is the 2004 winner of the Neil Postman Award for Career Achievement in Public Intellectual Activity. Quote: Like the ocean and the weather, our society has been networked together through the media, economic, and telecommunications infrastructures. We experience ourselves in a kind of fractal, with our television screens displaying images of television screens with television screens. And our interconnectedness allows for remote high leverage points: a single, tiny media event in a remote location – like a camcorder capturing the beating of a black man by white Los Angeles cops – can lead to full-scale rioting in 12 American cities. Links: Check out all the articles on his website, watch his appearance on the Colbert Report, or view one his three Frontline specials, linked from the video...

Congrats on a great Do Something Awards show!

Bravo! Our warm congratulations to our friends at Do Something, and the many celebrities, fans, and inspirational heroes who make it all possible. You are one of our favorite organizations, and we’re thankful for all you do, and the opportunity to help you do it. In case anyone missed anything: check out some awards, and the...

Great Pioneer Valley computer repair

We’re very keen on supporting local business here in Pioneer Valley. Personally, I feel even keener when a great person is part of the matter. Kiernan is an amazing guy, and has a great array of glowing recommendations in LinkedIn for his work repairing, upgrading, recovering, training (and more) with Green Earth Computers.  (The facebook fan page is pretty lively, too.) Think about your last computer emergency.  When you’ll need him, it’ll probably be urgent.  To make it easy on yourself, be sure to bookmark his site when you visit...