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Archivo del Autor: Belen De Leon

Apple Store designer proposes restoring Notre-Dame as… basically an Apple Store

Eight Inc, the design firm best known for conceptualizing the Apple Store and the now-iconic giant glass cube on 5th Ave in New York, has proposed to restore Notre-Dame’s sadly destroyed roof and spire — with a giant glass roof and spire. I don’t think the French will go for it.

The idea is to recreate the top of the building entirely out of structural glass, which is stronger than normal glass and thus could support itself without any internal framework.

It’s hard to know what to make of the proposal. It seems to me so inappropriate that it borders on parody. Leaving aside the practical concerns of keeping the glass clean and replacing any portion that’s cracked or something, the very idea of capping a gothic cathedral made almost entirely of stone with a giant sunroof seems like the exact opposite of what the church’s creators would have wanted.

Tim Kobe, founder of Eight, disagrees.

“I believe this definitive example of French gothic architecture requires a deep respect and appreciation of the history and intent of the original design,” he told Dezeen. “It should not be about the ego of a new architectural expression but a solution to honor this historic structure.”

I find that statement, especially the part about ego of new architectural expression, a little difficult to swallow when the proposal is to rebuild a nearly thousand-year-old cathedral in the style of an Apple Store.

He called the glass roof and spire “spiritual and luminous,” saying they evoked “the impermanence of architecture and the impermanence of life.”

That seems an odd thing to strive for. I’m not a religious person, but I as I understand it the entire idea of a cathedral is to create a permanent, solid representation of the very permanent presence of God and His everlasting kingdom of heaven. Life is fleeting, sure, but giant stone cathedrals that have outlasted empires seem a poor mascot for that fact.

Of course, it must be said that this wouldn’t be the only garish glass structure in the city that traditionalists would hate: The pyramid at the Louvre has attracted great ire for many years now. And it’s much smaller.

The French Senate (and many others) have expressed that they would like the cathedral to be restored to as close to its original state as possible — preferably with something better than centuries-old dry tinder holding up the roof. But President Macron has called for something more than simple reconstruction, and Prime Minister Philippe backs him, especially concerning the spire, which was a relatively late addition and as such isn’t quite as historic as the rest.

A design competition is to be held to create a new spire “adapted to the techniques and the challenges of our era,” which certainly could mean many things and inspire many interesting ideas. Here’s hoping they’re a little better than this one.


Source: TechCrunch

Original Content podcast: Director Grant Sputore explains how ‘I Am Mother’ draws from real-world robots

When I first watched the new Netflix Original film “I Am Mother,” I assumed that the robotic Mother (voiced by Rose Byrne) was a CG creation. How else could you create a robot that looked so inhuman, and that that could also run around the film’s post-apocalyptic environments so gracefully?

But in a bonus interview for the Original Content podcast, director Grant Sputore estimated that 99 percent of the shots of Mother are completely practical, consisting of nothing more than a person wearing “a fancy bit of costume.”

“It’s both a budgetary thing, because we knew how we were planning to make the film — but also, we’re children of ‘80s and ‘90s cinema,” Sputore said. “So we worship at the altar of ‘Robocop’ and ‘Predator’ and the first ‘Terminator’ and ‘Jurassic Park’ and all of Stan Winston’s work, which is most of those movies … It’s for our own satisfaction, as much as anything.”

The film focuses on the relationship between Mother and her adopted human daughter (Clara Rugaard), who has been completely isolated from the outside world — until the arrival of a mysterious stranger played by Hilary Swank prompts Daughter to question everything she’s been told.

When I asked how Sputore wanted to distinguish “I Am Mother” from all the previous movies about robots, he said there are fewer than you think:

All the films that you think are about robots are largely about androids. So like ‘Blade Runner,’ for instance, is a seminal contribution to the sci-fi genre and many people would say that it’s about robots, but really it’s about androids. Which sounds like semantics, but it’s significant [from] two different points of view, One: Android movies tend to focus on the question of, do androids have feelings? ‘Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?’ Are they like us? Where do you draw the line between robots and humans? I feel like that question has been done … and our film is not about that at all.

Plus, of course, android movies are usually cheaper to make, because you can just use a human actor.

Sputore said he was less interested in the dividing line between humans and androids, and more in the relationship between humans and robots.

While he’s clearly spent a lot of time watching classic science fiction films, he said Mother was actually based on a real machine, namely the Atlas robot created by Boston Dynamics. And where an ’80s movie like “Terminator” might use killer robots as a way to address fears around the emergence of computers and automation, Sputore suggested that our relationship with robots has become a much more real, and much more pressing, issue.

“It’s a little more scary when people start losing their jobs to smart machines,” he said.

You can listen in the player below, subscribe using Apple Podcasts or find us in your podcast player of choice. If you like the show, please let us know by leaving a review on Apple. You can also send us feedback directly. (Or suggest shows and movies for us to review!)


Source: TechCrunch

Meet the angry gaming YouTubers who turn outrage into views – CNET

The video game world is no stranger to controversy, but a new class of YouTube commentators is turning anger into influence.
Source: CNET

BMW opens its first Mexico plant as the US government threatens tariffs on Mexican goods – Roadshow

The Bavarian automaker is in an unenviable situation as it waits for a decision on tariffs from the US government.
Source: CNET

Why Google Would Drop $2.6 Billion on an Analytics Company

Antitrust? What antitrust? With Looker, it gains a faster way to tap into the business intelligence market.
Source: Wired

LG G8 ThinQ makes its way to US Cellular – CNET

The wireless carrier is offering $200 off LG’s latest flagship as part of a limited-time deal.
Source: CNET

¿Pueden las criptomonedas estabilizar la caótica economía argentina?

Su débil economía y la rápida pérdida de valor de su moneda está aumentando la desigualdad y empeorando la calidad de vida. Para solucionarlo, varias ‘start-ups’ intentan implantar ‘stablecoins’ como forma de pago y ahorro, pero esta estrategia aún tiene muchos retos por delante
Source: MIT

China empieza a preocuparse (por fin) por la ética de la IA

Científficos, políticos y tecnólogos del país acaban de presentar su primer un código ético para la inteligencia artificial. Y lo mejor de todo es que se parece bastante a las iniciativas previas que ya se están aplicando en Occidente
Source: MIT

Por qué EE. UU. quiere dividir a las 'Big Tech' y por qué le costará tanto

Con la vista puesta en las próximas elecciones, republicanos y demócratas empiezan a preocuparse por el enorme poder de Amazon, Google, Facebook y Apple. Les acusan de comportamientos anticompetitivos y, aunque tengan razón, legalmente será difícil que ganen la batalla
Source: MIT

Grab some binoculars and go look at Jupiter tonight – CNET

NASA urges space fans to check out the bright gas giant and its moons as the planet nears opposition.
Source: CNET

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