The Week In Design: 10 Stories You Can’t Miss

This week we were promised floating parks, flying bikes, and earbuds that will give us superhuman hearing.

In a fun, fashionable move forward, Google’s Advanced Technology And Projects (ATAP) lab has teamed up with Levi's to develop a smart fabric that is able to conduct “electrical variations in the skin,” bend, and morph according to the wearer. This means that your denim, in the near future, could potentially act like a touch screen, and even sync up with your social media devices. Called Project Jacquard, the collaboration recruited creatives in fashion, textile production, coding, and development to produce the conductive yarns that make up the smart fabric. According to, “gesture-sensitive areas can be woven at precise locations, anywhere on the textile. Alternatively, sensor grids can be woven throughout the textile, creating large, interactive surfaces that could be used to make larger products, like smart furniture and art installations.”

It was recently announced that by 2019, Hudson pier will have a floating public park and performance space thanks to fashion designer Diane von Furstenberg and her media mogul husband Barry Diller. They’re funding the entire $113 million-project. Construction begins next year.


The key to saving the Earth’s biodiversity, specifically coral reefs, may lie in 3D mapping software. Sly Lee, and his team of scientists at the Hydrous, use software to map how coral reefs have changed over time, then give that data to policymakers in order to advocate for better protective measures.


This past week, these colorful, light-producing smart shoes by Japanese startup No New Folk Studio took the internet by storm. The kicks are able to act as both a lighting system and an audio-visual controller, and contain over 100 LEDs as well as a system of advanced motion sensors to create vivid light paintings via fancy footwork. Currently, the group is hoping to fund their project through Indiegogo.

French artist Alban Guého’s Flood was selected this week to take part in the 2015 Nuit Blanche Festival in Paris. This year, the annual one-night event will address climate topics to be presented at the COP21 forum, which will take place in November. His work takes a critical eye to “extreme natural phenomena,” which many believe are directly related to human interference, and tries to relate it to biblical references of a great flood caused by man’s hubris (sound familiar?).

New York City’s guerrilla Beautification Project is currently under way! Check out these amazing temporary (and unauthorized) murals around the city.

Marvel promised all of us a female wolverine, and we are willing to wait for it.

It was also announced this week that a team from Hungary had developed an electric flying bike that actually works. The Flike, a tricopter, has so far stayed in flight for over a minute, and with a new lithium-polymer battery, will soon be able to sustain a 30-40 minute ride.

Just in time for festival season, Wired introduced us to Doppler, creators of a magic set of earbuds called Herethat which are supposed to offer “superhuman hearing 1.0,” and the ability to “adjust the world’s sounds to your exact liking.” It launches in two weeks and we are PSYCHED.

If you’d like to visit a real shit show, head on over to the Italy’s Museo della Merda. Yes, merda literally means shit. But hey, it’s housed in a castle (part of it held together by poop)! The museum is dedicated to demonstrating “what a useful and living substance crap really is.”


Seventy-five years ago, on January 27, 1945, the Soviet Army liberated the Auschwitz concentration camp operated by Nazi Germany in occupied Poland.

Auschwitz was the deadliest of Nazi Germany's 20 concentration camps. From 1940 to 1945 of the 1.3 million prisoners sent to Auschwitz, 1.1 million died. That figure includes 960,000 Jews, 74,000 non-Jewish Poles, 21,000 Roma, 15,000 Soviet prisoners of war, and up to 15,000 other Europeans.

The vast majority of the inmates were murdered in the gas chambers while others died of starvation, disease, exhaustion, and executions.

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via Barry Schapiro / Twitter

The phrase "stay in your lane" is usually lobbed at celebrities who talk about politics on Twitter by people who disagree with them. People in the sports world will often get a "stick to sports" when they try to have an opinion that lies outside of the field of play.

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via Stu Hansen / Twitter

In a move that feels like the subject line of a spam email or the premise of a bad '80s movie, online shopping mogul Yusaku Maezawa is giving away money as a social experiment.

Maezawa will give ¥1 million yen ($9,130) to 1,000 followers who retweeted his January 1st post announcing the giveaway. The deadline to retweet was Tuesday, January 7.

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