Archive for the ‘Audio’ Category

99% Invisible – Elegy for WTC -Buildings Speak

As a structural engineer, it was great to hear this podcast.  It was also heartbreaking, eerie.  If you have about 6 minutes, this is REALLY worth listening to (especially if you are a structural engineer)!

The link below is to a podcast that I listen to called “99% Invisible” done by an architect in San Francisco.  It is a short 6 minutes and is a recording of Les Robertson (structural engineer of the WTC) talking about his thoughts of his (and his team’s) design of the WTC structure.  Such a tough moment to listen to him take responsibility for the criteria used to design the structural solution for the WTC. 

A Little NPR Love…

I have a confession to make.  I am an NPR junkie.  I pretend I am Michele Norris when she says her name on the radio.  I like to believe that in another life I would have ended up with Ira Glass.  I sometimes pretend Carl Kasell is my father (sorry, dad, you’re pretty cool too).  I do, however, often lust after some of the lesser-known stars of NPR – in particular, Kai Ryssdal.  He’s a babe.

You can only imagine, then my joy when I recently found out that Tom Polucci (of Inside the Designer Studio and Contract Magazine fame) was interviewed …

Place Making for the Next Generation of Great Design Thinkers

I know I am not the most frequent blogger in this crowd, but every once in awhile something comes my way that I have to share. This week, Michelle turned me onto this audio recording of an interview Megan Holder did on women in architecture for Women on the Move, a news talk radio program our of Atlanta.

I gotta say, I have never been so proud of one of our young and emerging talents.  I was completely engaged in the interview…her natural ability for communicating translates across all media…[if you have not heard it…it’s a ‘must hear’ for sure].

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I sincerely hope we can always deliver on the nurturing work environment she describes.  I have …

HOK Asia Pacific Summer Event!

HOK’s Asia Pacific studio celebrated this hot season with parties and fun in Hong Kong, Beijing, Shanghai and Singapore! We had plenty of fun!

HOK Hong Kong’s beach party venue was located on one of Hong Kong’s most beautiful beaches, Pui O Beach for the Beach Olympics, Raft Building and a delicious BBQ dinner. 

Our fellow AP colleagues in Shanghai went to Go-Karting and had a nice Japanese dinner.

Colleagues in Beijing went to Shangzhuang Reservoir, which is known as the paradise for wild fishing in Beijing near downtown. The Rice-fragrant Lake is connected to the venue and they also enjoyed the delicious BBQ Dinner under a shelter.

Our energetic colleagues in Singapore had an exciting contest in Mount Faber Super Bowl, followed by a …

Truly Maximum Fun

One of my coworkers here in the Planning Group turned me onto what is now my all-time favorite podcast (That’s right, you’ve been replaced This American Life – I mean, I have listened to your ENTIRE archive…).  I am, thus, turning you, dear reader, onto the super-fun also.  And I’ve just listened to exactly the starter-’sode that will surely get you hooked.  A Great talk by Merlin Mann about Creative Work and the weirdos that attempt to do it, or attempt to start it.  Two very enthusiastic virtual thumbs up.  Way up.

 Listen here:

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This podcast is, simply put, about things that are awesome.  The host, Jesse Thorn (America’s Radio Sweetheart), asks lots of cool questions of people …

another office productivity blog post

While you’re in design school, they really just lie to you.  Okay, maybe not lie, but they certainly omit somethings.  One thing they really don’t touch on enough is just how much WRITING you’re going to be doing in the “real world.”    Yesterday was one of those days where I just had to crank out some real text, and I’m not talking fun “once upon a time” stuff; this is jargon filled diatribe-type love. 

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Although I love the extremely open layout of our office when it’s time for true collaboration, the super-openness doesn’t always work to our advantage when we’re trying to do tough stuff

Onward to Zero (Emissions)!

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What does it take to design a net zero emissions office building? Because few of our clients are currently considering carbon neutrality in their projects, an HOK team — with help from some wonderful friends — is designing one through a series of virtual charrettes.

In response to Architecture 2030′s challenge to the global architecture and building community, HOK has committed to designing all buildings to be 100 percent carbon neutral by 2030.

The idea for the charrette is the brainchild of HOK Chairman Bill Valentine, who wants the firm’s people to gain the knowledge and experience required to design zero emissions buildings. This vision is being turned into reality …

Regulation and Spontaneity

Two trains of thought. The city planned by the people, and the city planned for the people.

What do you think? Is one more democratic? Is one more successful and to whom? Is there a difference in the individual good and the collective good and do we view them differently? (think hard about that last one)

Maybe it’s both, I don’t know. But I have my assumptions. Maybe there’s just the ‘public’ and ‘planned’ framework that’s the most important part. Like New York City in the 1811?

One more thought. In the scheme of things, ‘What would nature do?’ Develop a framework or organize a system that builds its own framework? Instead of the ‘overlay’ for the greater good, it could …

Music and a Meal

Today we had a very special lunch treat.  Some representatives from the Cameron Youth Chamber Orchestra graced us with some beautiful music.  That’s right, we got to have a seat (or stay at our desk and frantically work through lunch….you know who you are!) and just enjoy the skills of a very talented group. 

We invited them into our office to help us celebrate the Arts and Education Council, and to help us raise interest in the fundraising effort we’re participating in this week and next.  The Arts and Education Council supports regional arts and helps them thrive and grow. 

If you’re interested in helping out, head on over to the Chamber Orchestra’s site or the Arts

Praveen & Benoît / Shigeto Remix

Alright, I’ve been crazy-busy these last few weeks and no time to post, however that being said I’d have to be dead not to notice this.

I’m voting this Best Remix of Quarter 1 2009.

I’m not going to say anything about bootstraps, chinstraps, jockstraps, or any other kind of strap. Just listen.

& Enjoy.

The Animated Postcard

This is a story full of laughter, fear, and courage. A story about 3 guys — my brother, my cousin, and myself — on our travels from Brownsville, Texas, to Seattle, Washington. Unfortunately, my brother along the way became ill and therefore is absent from this video. Enjoy.

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A special thanks to Jamie Andrew for his editing, acting, and not killing me in the process.

***This Video qualified for my Pecha Kucha presentation. Unlike everyone else that has done this exercise, I went beyond the normally 20 seconds/20 slides, and went for the 20 seconds/ 20 locations/ 20 arguments/ 20 bathroom breaks/ 3500 images format.***

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Rockin’ in the Office

—-UPDATED WITH SONG TITLES & ARTISTS—-

Recently, music has been intersecting in both my personal and professional lives. Professionally, this relates to the discussion of whether it is appropriate to use headphones at work . The office was pretty divided (and yes, the divide was pretty much Gen X & Y vs. the Boomers & Veterans). Arguments against headphones were that individuals miss out on the studio chatter about their projects and can be limited in their professional development if they are constantly plugged into music. Arguments for headphones were that the studio can be a loud environment and headphones are helpful for concentration or sending a signal not to disturb unless it’s important. 

I personally tend to …

Sir Peter Cook on BBC Radio 4

This morning I was listening to the BBC Radio 4 Today Programme, which is probably the most respected morning radio news show in the UK. If you haven’t listened to it before I thoroughly recommend the podcast. It features political, economic and social debates from the worlds most powerful and/or inspiring thought leaders.

This morning Zaha Hadid was guest-editing the programme, so as you may guess there was a heavy design emphasis. Hadid gave an interesting interview which you can listen to here. But what I was most interested in was an interview with the CEO of Vitra about how the best design is usually achieved under the pressured conditions of …