Architectural photography is something I can never seem to get down. I love shooting people much more than buildings, but when it is executed correctly I love it, even though it is not my favorite thing to shoot. I could look at good architectural photography all day. What’s interesting is how architectural photographers use light to sculpt, add contrast, and bring out details in their work. Check out this really in depth tutorial from Vancouver architectural photographer Roger Brooks on how he lights and retouches an architectural interior.
Inhabitat's Week in Green: transparent airplanes, photovoltaic subdivisions and a wind-powered yacht
Green transportation soared through the skies this week as Inhabitat reported on Airbus’ plans for a transparent airplane, and we showcased a crazy working hover bike capable of flying up to 10,000 feet. We were also excited to see China begin to roll out high-speed rail across Asia and we spotted several out-of-this world Frankenstein vehicles — a Mercedes-Benz bus train in Bolivia and a wind-powered yacht that doubles as an airplane.
It was a momentous week for energy news as well, as Italians voted to end the use of nuclear power, and we took a look inside Germany’s Wunderland Kalkar Amusement Park, which is built inside of a decommissioned nuclear plant. Solar power also had its moment in the sun as Enfinity unveiled two gorgeous photovoltaic-laden landscapes in Les Mées, France and Bangladesh announced that one million of the country’s homes are powered by photovoltaic panels. We even spotted a new type of flexible generator that could be built into shoes to produce power as you walk.
This week we were also excited to unveil the winners of our Bright Ideas Lighting Design Competition — the elegant geometric Tetra Pak Lamp, the gorgeous glowing Nourishment Lamp, and the cute cork Pinha Pendant Light. We also launched our new Ask a Tech Geek Series where gadget guru extraordinaire Peter Rojas answers your questions about green technology, and we reported on one Japanese researcher’s dubious plan to create an artificial meat substitute from poop. Finally, we shared an awesome steampunk rotary smartphone and a set of fun foldable Paper Punk robots that are perfect for terrorizing your coworkers’ cubicles.
You might think yourself too grown-up to be wowed by shiny, glittery things, but we doubt many will be able to watch NVIDIA’s new Glow Ball tech demo without a smidgen of childlike glee. Built to run on the company’s quad-core Kal-El processor, it shows us the first example of true dynamic lighting on mobile devices and also throws in some impressive physics calculations like fully modeled cloth motion. Instead of the pre-canned, static lights that we see on mobile games today, NVIDIA’s new hardware will make it possible to create lighting that moves, fluctuates in intensity, and responds realistically to its environment — all rendered in real time. The titular glow ball can be skinned with different textures, each one allowing a different amount and hue of illumination to escape to surrounding objects, and is directed around the screen using the accelerometer in your tablet or smartphone.
NVIDIA demoed the new goodness on a Honeycomb slate with 1280 x 800 resolution and the frame rates remained smooth throughout. In order to emphasize the generational leap that we can expect with Kal-El, the company switched off two of the four cores momentarily, which plunged performance down to less than 10fps. That means the simulations we’re watching require a full quartet of processing cores on top of the 12-core GPU NVIDIA has in Kal-El. Mind-boggling stuff. Glow Ball will be available as a game on Android tablets once this crazy new chip makes its way into retail devices — which are still expected in the latter half of this year, August if everything goes perfectly to plan. One final note if you’re still feeling jaded: NVIDIA promises the production chip will be 25 to 30 percent faster than the one on display today. Full video demo follows after the break.