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Bendy concrete and more netbased paranoia

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AJ+.COLUMN

I am not sure if I have got my head around this one.You have probably seen those reports about transparent concrete. Now it is flexible selfpropelling concrete and the story is on Wired News.

Its nub is that if you use a mix of Portland cement hollow, glass microbeads, latex, acrylic fortifier and water, then allow it to dry for half a day, you get 'concrete so flexible that it will bend and snap right back with nary a crack'.

But that's just the start.You make a canoe out of it (! ), somehow get it up to its natural frequency and the canoe starts to flex and thus propel itself forward.The story claims that a 22ft, 76lb canoe with a natural resonance of 6Hz has been built and tested and goes like the clappers.

Imagine the possible extensions into architecture: what would this do for the articulated opening eyes that Calatrava is building all over the place?

Architecture guerrillas could bring in bass speakers and play a deep note to get the eyelid to open of its own accord.

And those bridges. You could rebuild them in flexible concrete to swing open and shut with the deep note of an articulated lorry's horn. This is leadingedge structural stuff.Check it out at www. wired. com/news/technology/0,128 2,44800,00. html.

Still, with all those glass microwhatsits, maybe this is also the transparent concrete story, although Google directs you to the April issue of Metropolis for a story in which Bill Price 'discussed his vision of an entire city of transparent concrete buildings'.

People have accused me of acute paranoia on the topics of snooping, cookies, spybots, adware, viruses, hoax viruses, Trojans, worms and the like.Well, maybe. Nevertheless, with the exception of woozles, they all exist and the best site to find out about some of them is Lavasoft at www. lavasoftusa. com.There you will find chatrooms, an FAQ page and downloads. Some of the latter are free, others require a modest fee.

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