Elvis and Kresse built a company that designs high fashion products out of used fire hoses from the UK fire brigade. There may be analogous applications for retro computer equipment or highly durable materials like Ethernet cords or other cables.
Yale's Dept. of Molecular Biophysics and Biochemistry recently published a paper on type of Fungi that may be able to consume polyester polyurethane as its sole source of Carbon. http://aem.asm.org/content/77/17/6076
Wow. So cool. I was thinking that a major limitation to the Fungi idea would be the hard metals that are aways integrated into electronics products. Separating the two for distinct processing can be an expensive and toxic process in its own right, so an approach that could utilize both types of biodegradation to tackle the plastic and metal together could be rather powerful. Thanks for sharing!
Hi Szilvia! Great reminder on the difficulties of living with people you know! It would be interesting to spend time with people in group living situations, and try to figure out what sort of behaviors are tied to living with people you know, and see why people might delay bringing up problems, and what the result of those delays might be.
Katsuyoshi's point about community living being particularly practical in temporary communities makes a lot of sense to me too. When people are looking to build a community, there would be more likely to bend to accommodate others in the short term to win a new friend (particularly if they dont have to live with that person forever!).
I like the analogy of working with friends a lot. I have been in that situation before, and it can be terrible! One of the reasons I found it so difficult is that sometimes my commitment to my friend conflicted with my commitment to the mission of our employer. I wonder, however if these types tension might actually serve a productive purpose in the context of a community's "mission".
The communities I have been a part of have gained a lot of their richness from the type of compromises and conversations that occur as a result of the tensions between the desires of individual members. A kid wants to stay up till midnight, a grandpa wants to go to bed at 8pm and because they are stuck in the same space their lives both are enriched by staying up till 10pm and talking. While a friend may or may not fit the needs of a company as a matter of fact (so you have the awkward situation of having to fire them), a friend in a community might define the objectives of the community by joining it, thus making their contributions inherently more useful. Maybe that is a bit of a utopian thought of community, but I would love to hear your thoughts.
Hi Meghan, I like the concept of micro-neighborhoods a lot. That is exactly what I was trying to articulate, but didn't have the word for it. Many of the cities I love (New york, Montreal, Portland) have that feeling like you are stumbling into a new cultural hub every few blocks. It isnt something that is centrally planned, but rather has just developed over years of people attracting their families and friends and loved ones nearby, till they feel that they have the comfort and support network needed to do everything from opening a small businesses to playing a board-game on the sidewalk. These hubs turn those few blocks their own little town, and the city that their town is a part of becomes all the richer.