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Assignment 3: My New Norfolk

–          My new version of Norfolk would incorporate smart growth by building new housing complexes on top of or next to city centers that contain food, shopping, and other necessities needed for everyday life. In turn this would diminish a reliance on cars and improve the environment. I would relate to the concept of in-fill development to use up all of the existing space that is available.

–          Even though regulatory agencies don’t make it easy for the companies constructing new buildings, these agencies improve the environment we live in. Many times this will mean the construction company will have to spend more money to get new technological products to be used in the buildings.

–          Since only 70% of the population in the US is on-line, the new Norfolk would have more public access for internet usage by putting in more computers to use in libraries or even in some cafes. There would also be tutorial sessions on how to use these technologies offered to the public.

–          The Outdoor Adventure Program at Old Dominion University will be instituting a Bike Share program that will make bikes assessable to students who would like to use them around campus. This will hopefully diminish the need for students to drive around campus.

–          http://www.ted.com/talks/robert_hammond_building_a_park_in_the_sky.html

–          Robert realized that instead of destroying something not used anymore, we can make another use for it.

–          Since the tracks were no longer being used, the idea came up to use the glowing view of the city from the tracks as a place to spend recreational time in that city environment.

–          This will create about $500 million for the city by the time it is finished being built.

The new Norfolk will incorporate use of solar panels to create new energy sources. With these in effects, the need for other fossil fuels for energy will diminish significantly and improve the greenhouse effect for the city.

Since the reliance on automobiles will be diminished in the new Norfolk, this will improve the air quality in the city. There will be a significant drop in the emissions that are put off from cars or trucks.

Wind energy

–          If the wind turbines are placed on the outskirts of the city, the city could use them as an alternative source of energy.

–          But if these turbines are placed in the middle of the city, it would be difficult to gain much energy because of the building blocking the majority of the wind.

My New Norfolk

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Activity 2

•How many people does Steffen estimate we will have living in or

near cities by mid-century?

 – 8 billion

•Explain how you agree or disagree with Steffen’s point that

our energy use is “predestined” rather than “behavioral”.

 – Because of the world we live in, we need these energy

   uses to survive at the current pace we are at.

•What correlation does Steffen make between a city’s density

and its climate emissions?

 – Denser places have lower emissions

•What are the “eco districts” that Steffen mentions? How you

see these as feasible or unfeasible in a city like Norfolk?

 – infill, urban retrofitting, tentpole density

•Explain how you agree or disagree with the “threshold effect”

that Steffen discusses related to transportation.

 – People stop driving as much, give up cars if everything they need is where they live. I agree with this point because gas prices are getting expensive and people won’t always pay the high prices. He states that the market is going from the dream home to the dream neighborhood.

•What does Steffen mean by the idea that, “…even space itself

is turning into a service…”? Can you provide any examples that

you see here in Norfolk or elsewhere?

 – Everything is not just sitting idle anymore. We are reusing

   these things to save money and conserve resources.

•Describe your understanding of Steffen’s argument that, “…it’s

not about the leaves above, but the systems below…”.

 – It’s not about what everything looks like on the surface, its

   how these systems are actually working under the surface.

•Finally, overall in what way(s) do you see Steffen’s ideas

working / not working here in Norfolk? Spend time with this question!

 – I really agree with Steffen’s position on the “threshold effect”. If all of the people’s needs and wants are within a few blocks, people would stop driving cars most of the time. Downtown Norfolk

Abstract 1: Technology Overview and Impact

Bjerklie, D., Gorman, C., & Park, A. (2001). DIAGNOSING THE RISKS. Time, 158(16), 42.

Ever since the attacks of 9/11 on the World Trade Center, Americans have been very weary as to when another attack would take place. The people were most worried about the threat of a massive-scale chemical or biological attack. However, experts fear more frequent smaller-scale attacks. Smallpox is an example of a posing threat because many people in the US are not vaccinated and it can spread very quickly. As soon as the public knew about it, Anthrax had put fear into many people’s heads with the threat of it being spread from planes above. Many people also were scared that terrorists may do something to our livestock, in turn seeping into our food supply. Since the early 1950’s and 1960’s, the threat of nuclear attack has been looming over all of our heads. A few other threats that could make their way onto American soil would be contamination of dams and water reservoirs, an outbreak of Sarin or E. Coli, or the explosion of IED’s or roadside bombs.

I feel the Author made very good points on how possible these attacks are. He acknowledged many real fears that Americans had about terrorism and then questioned the reality or possibility of theses coming true. Even though technology is changing every day, and new innovations in weaponry  pose great threats to our society as a whole, our minds get so wrapped up on the possibilities that we sometimes overlook the current reality of certain technology.

New Gadget

Nano Coating will make any gadget waterproof. Would have been nice to have before my phone took a dive into the toilet. #stem110t

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