Sunday, February 14, 2010

New Blogs

It's been ages since I've posted about some of the recent blog additions. To maintain my sanity, I've decided that for each new blog I add to my personal RSS feed, I take another off (the total hovers around 120 or so, which is a lot of input). I keep all of them in the various sidebars, but focus on 'reading' the ones with consistent and relevant content. Some notable inclusions:

Digital Urban: A recent addition, the site features some amazing work utilizing a range of digital tools that literally had me staring at videos for a couple of hours. More to post on some of this work, but in synopsis, the blog is "...
written by Dr Andrew Hudson-Smith, aimed at examining the latest techniques to visualise the city scape via digital media it covers a lot of the work going on at the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis, University College London."

Edible Geography: Nicola Twilley explores a fascinating breadth of topics around concepts of food, maps, and much in between. Part of the growing BLDGBLOG empire, you get a feeling that dinnertable conversations are never dull after spending the days mining the ephemera of the world that never graces the pages of mainstream media.

Civil Eats: Taking a more literally approach to food, Civil Eats is one of my go to blogs for ideas on food and urban agriculture
, looking to promote "...critical thought about sustainable agriculture and food systems as part of building economically and socially just communities." It's a great compliment to City Farmer News and some of the food writing from The Grist.

mammoth: A tag-team effort from Stephen Becker and Rob Holmes the blog mines similar terrain to the peripheral investigators that make for great blog content.
Their manifesto gives a good indication of the diverse margins of writing and interest: "Our interests include extinct megafauna, the production of urban space through the manipulation of infrastructure, landscape processes, and tactical architectural interventions aimed at forestalling the arrival of our inevitably dystopian future and/or ushering in a new era of global harmony."

Next American City: The multi-author blog companion to the quarterly magazine, the site offers great thinking on contemporary urban issues, reminiscent of the great Design Observer site. From the NAC site: "We observe, document and conceive realistic solutions about how to improve cities—how to ensure that future generations’ lives are improved, and not made more dangerous or unnecessarily complicated by the decisions we make"

Urban Tick: Another product of the
Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis in London, the blogs takes a specific process-oriented look at urban cycles: "With this blog the research on cycles and rhythms will be embedded in the most recent developments in technology, covering a range of areas with a focus on space-time related technologies."

Infrascape Design: Authored by Barry Lehrman, a landscape architect and educator from Minnesota, the blog focuses on a range of material, centered around " infrastructure, sustainable cities, and high-performance buildings around the world"

faslanyc: Simply put, intelligent, critical (often irreverent) but always spot on discourse on landscape architecture; or exactly what we need. From the blog header: "Take a nice book about landscape architecture. drop it in a puddle in a gutter on a street in New York City. leave it outside to dry and forget about it for a year. that wrinkled, yellowed edge, the way it crumbles when you touch it- that is FASLANYC."

Urban Cartography:
Infographics galore! Some great, some terrible, all interesting. See notes below on quantity and tumblrs,

Free Association Design (FAD): written by my friend and colleague from Portland, Brett Milligan explores the landscape with a focus reminiscent of BLDGBLOG and Pruned and the afforementioned mammoth - investigating many of the margins of landscape and architectural practice that place the profession firmly in the world of large-scale works, infrastructure, and urbanism, and less in the garden.

Plan and Section
: Written by a MLA student from University of Texas at Austin, the theme is squarely in the terrain of representation in landscape architecture: "The aesthetics of representation are heavily explored on this site as well as the social pull graphics can have in illustrating that landscapes are socially necessary and economically viable"

I'm also amazed and overwhelmed by many the various tumblr-type sites... amazed by some of the great images and snippets of projects - overwhelmed by the sheer output and redundancy between them. Something about the type of site interface seems to lends itself to 20-30+ 'posts' in a day, which tends to make me want to just delete the works rather than sift through them for interesting links, or just unsubscribe for sanity-sake. That said, a few notables that focus on the landscape architecture are People and Place, makdreams, urban greenery, if you don't mind a daily bombardment of great images.

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