By LYDIA LAURENSON
Inside the Airbnb offices
Airbnb is one of the city's most fashionable startups right now, and it's riding the design wave. On Wednesday the 18th, I headed over to one of their free monthly Design Talks, a mixer/lecture at their current office in the Design District. The speaker was Patrice Martin of Ideo.org, whose tagline is "Let's Design A Better World With Everyone." Martin's presentation included one slide that said "Design As A Way Of Seeing The World"; she spoke about "design thinking" and how Ideo addresses social issues in "places where design can't reach."More »
Sex slaves. Obliteration of natural resources. Malnutrition. San Franciscans craving an authentic, inexpensive vacation often turn to developing countries, but low costs often mean low standards of living. Join travel experts Jeff Greenwald and Malia Everette for "Ethical Destinations," a panel on how to spend your coveted tourist dollars in meaningful ways.
Every November, Bay Area nonprofit Ethical Traveler releases its top 10 list praising developing countries that promote locally based, sustainable tourist economies.
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Much is made about our city's storied history in subversive art, with iconic groups like the Billboard Liberation Front, Survival Research Laboratories, the Cacophony Society, and the Suicide Club. A group in Paris, however, gives all of it a run for its money, if not a shellacking.
Meet the secretive Paris Urban eXperiment, aka the UX. It came into being in 1981, when the group came across (stole) plans detailing Paris' numerous underground passages, catacombs, and tunnels, and went exploring. Then UX started throwing events down below: staging plays, throwing up a movie theater and a bar, serving guests at a restaurant. The group also -- and here UX becomes part of the holy underground -- began restoring stuff. Fixing things.
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When it comes to dance innovation, San Francisco thinks outside the bun. Our dance troupes perform off the sides of hotels (Niagara Falling), collaborate with indie-pop musicians (Oh, Inverted World), and use laundromats as venues (Laundromatinee). All the more reason for Alonzo King LINES Ballet -- a contemporary ballet company, school, and dance center for all skill levels -- to join hands (and feet) with S.F.-based electronic sculpture artist Jim Campbell, whose work has appeared at the Smithsonian, the Whitney, and New York's MOMA.
As home to Maker Faire, not to mention a lot of counterculture and counter-intuitive invention, the Bay Area is no stranger to D.I.Y., but it usually takes the rest of the country a while to catch on. For years, Chris Anderson, editor in chief of Wired magazine, has pointed to the far-reaching consequences of emergent ideas. And, despite some accusations of Wiki-plagiarism in his last book, he's been pretty good.
Conventional wisdom states that when you take the long view, the arc of history is brutal. We live within a weird historical blip, some aberrant time of relative luxury and safety. But is this really the case? In his 2011 book, The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined, multi-disciplinary researcher Steven Pinker argues against this despairing view of history and human nature.
For the first time in history, the San Francisco Architectural Heritage will cosponsor a panel on historic preservation with the GLBT Historical Society. The San Francisco Architectural Heritage is a misunderstood organization, falsely believed to be monomaniacal about the city's most elite landmarks. Seeking greater collaboration and new audiences, both organizations prioritize significant physical locales associated with the community. "These Walls Can Speak: Telling the Stories of Queer Places" will explore the ways in which queer historic sites are being preserved, documented, and interpreted.More »