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What if your college dorm analyzed your sewage to find out if you’re pregnant or on drugs?

This story is part of Future Tense Fiction, a monthly series of short stories from Future Tense and Arizona State University’s Center for Science and the Imagination about how technology and science will change our lives.

https://slate.com/technology/2021/08/beauty-surge-laura-maylene-walter-short-story.html

The Future of Space 2021

It is clear that we leveraged technology to our benefit during COVID-19 lockdowns. Tech was a welcomed lifeline that we will continue to engage to augment our lives or lean on as a crutch as we begin to hesitantly re-enter public spaces. Our fears will turn toward each other as we gauge who we can trust. How that will play out in a world that continues to be raw and divided needs to be understood. What remains unknown is the role of alternate reality spaces and how it will interplay with our lives. Read more

Unilever’s latest laundry capsule is made from CO2 taken from a Chinese steel mill.

The laundry capsules, available through the brand Omo and launching in China April 22, result from a partnership between Unilever, biotech company LanzaTech, and green chemical company India Glycols. LanzaTech, which has a commercial plant running in China that turns carbon emissions from a steel mill into ethanol, has already used its carbon recycling process to turn those emissions into jet fuel and alcohol for fragrances. Read more (Fast Company)

is Deliveroo killing restaurant culture?

“In a world where consumers want more, better and faster, we think Deliveroo is doing a good job,” concluded a report by the private investment bank Berenberg earlier this month. Plenty of people who make money from money are betting that Deliveroo is on a long-term path to profitability, even if its current set-up pushes the company further into the red with every order. “We truly believe we are still getting started,” declared Deliveroo’s founder, Will Shu, in a letter to prospective shareholders. “Join us on the journey.” But what is that journey’s ultimate destination? And what will the implications be – for the way we eat, the livelihoods of those who feed us and the future of our neighbourhoods – once we arrive? Read more (The Guardian)

Why Grocery Shopping Is on Its Way Out

The way Canadians get their food is changing. Our grocery industry—which currently employs over 300,000 people and is valued at $97.5 ­billion according to Canadian Grocer—is in an arms race to modernize for a digital era. More and more customers expect the convenience of needing to think far less about their groceries, and work less to get them, than they ever have before. What’s less clear is the ripple effects this will have on our daily lives, our communities, our health, and our workforces. Read more (TheWalrus.ca)

Covid Bunkers – The Newest Status Symbol for High-Net Worth Homeowners: Trophy Trees

For decades, Walter Acree operated a modest landscaping business in Deerfield Beach, Fla. A self-described rebel, he mowed lawns in his bare feet, his then-long hair falling around his shoulders. Then, a few years ago, he stumbled into a lucrative niche business: helping South Florida’s superrich find trophy trees—the latest in status symbols for the most well-off Americans. Read more (WSJ)