After Janine Benyus wrote Biomimicry: Innovation Inspired by Nature, she tried to find it in a big-box bookstore. The bookseller asked what it was about, and she tried to explain that it was "about looking to nature for inspiration for new inventions"...."It’s not really technology or biology; it’s the technology of biology."
She writes about what happened next:
But you don't have to choose one. We're seeing more examples of biomimicry every day. Over the years, we at TreeHugger have been watching the merging of those two ideas in our culture, as we learn from nature. You see it in titles like Moth eyes inspire more efficient thin-film solar cells and Squid beak inspires more comfortable medical implants or Remora fish, those suckers of the sea, are inspiring new adhesives.
Then he lifted his palms as if weighing two packages and said something I will never forget. “Look lady, you’ve got Nature and you’ve got Technology; you’ve got to choose one.” He was referring to the category scheme in the store, but I realized that the deep, deep separation between those two ideas in our culture was why biomimicry was squirming to be born.
That's why we are so excited to be media partners in the Education Summit and First Global Conference in Boston, June 21 to 23. It promises to be "A global conversation on how biomimicry will shape innovation and education in the years to come."
The conference covers subjects dear to our hearts at TreeHugger; Day 1 is about Resilient Cities.
In the face of climate change many cities face the challenge of how to be more resilient especially after record storm events like Sandy. How would nature serve as a model to make our dwellings safer while restoring “the commons” of air, water, and habitat. Join Janine Benyus as she talks to creative architects, cities planners and other leading thinkers engaged in designing generous cities that give back and bounce back.
Day 2 looks at the future of 3D printing.
You won’t unpack your next TV…you’ll print it. The “Story of Stuff” is being rewritten by 3D printers that can make anything, anywhere. Right now these printers use a toxic soup to achieve astonishing forms that used to be the domain of big factories overseas. But what if we followed nature’s blueprints about how to make materials, like resins, from locally abundant and benign feed stocks like carbon? We could usher in a new era of self-reliance with manufacturing that is safe enough to be brought back home, to our neighborhoods.
Day 3 will cover Biomimicry as an Emerging Discipline and Economic Development Framework
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