“We studied neighborhoods ranging in socioeconomic-status and culture. Those built with more activity-supportive environmental features had residents who did more physical activity. For example, transit access is a requirement for living a lifestyle that is less car-dependent and more active because it increases walking to and from the transit facility,” said James Sallis, PhD, lead study investigator and Distinguished Professor in the Department of Family Medicine and Public Health at UC San Diego School of Medicine.

Transportation experts have repeatedly found that building new roads inevitably encourages more people to drive, which in turn negates any congestion savings—a phenomenon known as “induced demand.”

The German city of Hamburg has announced plans to become car-free within the next two decades. It is an ambitious idea, but city officials obviously feel that the personal motorcar does not fulfill a function that walking, biking and taking public transport cannot.

The goal of Hamburg’s project is to replace roads with a “gruenes netz” or a green network of interconnected open areas covering 40% of the city. According to the official website, parks, playgrounds, sports fields, allotments and cemeteries will be connected to form a network, which will allow people to navigate through the city without the use of cars.

If you were to build a city from scratch, using current technology, what would it cost to live there? I think it would be nearly free if you did it right.

I will underline certain characteristics of Japanese zoning that makes it different from North American practices and that I find particularly interesting.

Here’s the scene: A problem has come up with one of your supply chain vendors, threatening to delay timely shipment of your product. At the same time, a potential opportunity appears that, with some exploration and investment, could lead to a new generation of products down the road. Which do you respond to first?

In the current Journal of Transport and Health, Garrick and Marshall report that cities with more compact street networks—specifically, increased intersection density—have lower levels of obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease. The more intersections, the healthier the humans.

“It might not be common for people to explicitly contemplate health when selecting a place to live,” Garrick and Marshall write, “but this research indicates it is worth considering.”

First a definition: A story point is a measure of the effort required to build out a story. It has nothing to do with time. Points usually occur on a 1-to-5 scale (where 1 represents a trivial effort), but some prefer a Fibonacci sequence (1, 2, 3, 5, 8, 13, 21…) because the further you get from trivial, the more the effort ratchets up. I can't emphasize too strongly that this measure has nothing to do with time beyond the broad observation that hard stuff takes longer. There is no way to map a point to a particular time interval.

In other words, you're estimating something concrete — a fixed set of features. To insist on meeting an estimate at a fixed deadline is to commit to building that set of features. That set is bound to be wrong, however, so the estimate is bound to be meaningless. Committing to the deadline is effectively a commitment to build the wrong product.

I'm not sure about you, but in my "real world," building a product that nobody's going to buy isn't a particularly important goal.

The Lego calendar is a wall mounted time planner made entirely of Lego. Take a photo of it with a smartphone all of the events and timings will be magically synchronised to an online, digital calendar. It makes the most of the tangibility of physical objects, and the ubiquity of digital platforms.

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