March 16, 2017
Laura Winkless writes for Forbes about the ways robots are changing life in urban areas. ROBOATs, the fleet of autonomous boats and floating structures developed by Prof. Carlo Ratti, “could offer an additional, low-cost way to once again integrate local canals and rivers into the urban landscape,” said Winkless.
Using an algorithm and a 3-D scan of a human body, Prof. Carlo Ratti designed a foldable stool that can conform to different shapes, writes Margaret Rhodes for Wired. Allowing algorithms to determine the form of each hinge, “allows you to create shapes and functions that you otherwise wouldn’t be able to,” Ratti explains.
A study co-authored by Prof. Carlo Ratti finds ride-sharing is feasible in different cities around the world, reports Eleanor Cummins for Popular Science. “The key thing is how this can transform our cities. Every car you remove from the road, you are removing pollution and traffic,” explains Ratti.
Prof. Andrew Lo speaks with Barry Ritholtz of Bloomberg View about the field of economics. Lo explains that his new book chronicles his “intellectual journey from a diehard devotee of efficient markets and rational expectations into the realm of first psychology and behavioral finance, and then to neuroscience and how people really make decisions.”
Alumnus Peter Samson reminisces with New York Times reporter Sam Roberts about how as an MIT student he calculated the most efficient route to ride the New York City subway system. “I had previously used the computer to solve some small subway-network puzzles,” Samson recalled, “and suddenly saw a way to put all of my loves together: computers, trains and New York.”
AP reporter Seth Borenstein writes that a study by Media Lab Research Scientist Nick Obradovich shows that as climate change brings about milder winters, people may be more likely to exercise. "It's a small little tiny silver lining amid a series of very bad, very unfortunate events that are likely to occur," says Obradovich.