Brain Food

Below are links to relevant articles and resources that feature interesting ideas, thought-provoking analysis, or that otherwise punch me in the gullet. New stuff gets added as I discover it. Feel free to suggest additions…


One Size Fits Some. Six architects present ideas on the changing nature of housing.

Sonoma Mountain Village. A New Urbanisty Eco-Town in the works. I’m not sold on this kind of thing, but it’ll be interesting to see how it shapes up.

Vancouverism vs. Manhattanism. An evaluation of two schools of high-density city building.

Time to Deliver. A rational call to arms that examines the approaches we might take in confronting the issues at hand. A vague description, I know. But the article’s good.

Chicago: What Made the Burnham Plan Successful? This one’s pretty self-explanatory.

The Emancipated Earth. Mother Nature as landowner.

Vertical Farming. Fascinating, but I’m not entirely sure I like where it leads.


Deep Economy. Why a sustainable economy will not only help us survive but make us happier.

Cradle to Cradle. Why we should change the way we make things.

Of Wolves and Men. What our treatment and understanding of wolves tells us about ourselves.

Suttree. An indelible novel about life among the indigent in 1950s Knoxville.

The Snow Leopard. Travelogue and personal meditation on Buddhism, enlightenment, loss, and solitude.

Getting to Maybe: How the World is Changed. A primer on complexity science and social innovation.

Green Urbanism: Learning from European Cities. Practical ideas that can move us closer to sustainability, as put into practice by nearly twenty European case study cities.

The End of Nature. How the gap between manmade and natural has vanished.

The American Adam. Tracing the development of American individualism.

Our Ecological Footprint: Reducing Human Impact on the Earth. Why a paradigm shift is necessary and how we might evaluate our progress.

The Death and Life of Great American Cities. Seminal work by one of the 20th century’s most astute urban observers.

The Social Life of Small Urban Spaces. How to look at and create places so good we take them for granted.

Wall and Piece. Banksy.

The Great Neighborhood Book. How to become a placemaker.

The Rise of the Creative Class. The effects being wrought by a new economic/social class.

The Ancestor’s Tale. Human history, going all the way back.

Invisible Cities. Poetic fictional dialogue between Marco Polo and Kublai Khan.

The Roads to Sata. Walking Japan with a cantankerous and keenly observant Brit.

How the Irish Saved Civilization. History isn’t boring; this is the first in the Hinges of History series.

Trickster Makes This World. Why troublemakers are absolutely essential.

Guns, Germs, and Steel. The role of geography in the rise of empires.

Civilizations. How disparate cultures developed in similar geographies.

The Image of the City. Why some parts of a city are memorable and others aren’t.


The Five Obstructions. Creativity thrives on restrictions.

The Age of Stupid. That would be now. That would be us.

Persepolis. Urban culture, authoritarianism, and freedom.

Waltz with Bashir. Wars of culture and religion hurt everybody.

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