As managing editor of Planetizen, I'd like to make a quick note on today's op-ed, Resisting Dickensian Gloom by Tony Recsei. Mr Recsei asked for a chance to respond to a recent criticism of his work by Planetizen regular Michael Dudley. It is our policy at Planetizen to allow points of view that are critical of the status quo in urban planning, so I agreed to run the piece. I did ask Mr. Recsei to tone down some of the more personal attacks on smart growthers so that his points could be presented more clearly to our audience, and I believe he has done that.
You may have noticed that over the past few years we've learned a lot more about how the brain works. This is mostly due to advances in functional neuroimaging (fMRI), which makes brain scanning much less onerous and dangerous (no radiation involved). Researchers are using this new access to the brain to send it through various puzzles and thoughts and seeing where and how the brain reacts.
Josh Greene is an assistant professor at Harvard, and he has used his research to explore questions of moral judgement and decisionmaking. One puzzle he's looked at is called the "Trolley Problem." Here's the setup:
Planetizen readers, I have an idea I'd like your opinion on. As managing editor for the past year, I've become increasingly aware of how skilled and professional our readers are. Comments on articles are almost always civil, engaging and thoughtful, something that can't be said for the majority of websites. We have a community of experts here, which is why I bring my idea to you.
I am a bicycle commuter in Los Angeles, which on the face of it is a pretty tricky proposition. The major boulevards here are designed like freeways, and people use them as such. Pico, Highland, Sepulveda, Olympic- these streets were built for speed and make commuting not a little tricky for your serious bicycle commuter.
INTERVIEWER: Obviously ‘American music’ means different things to different people. What does it mean to you?
Reporting from CNU 17 in Denver, where the thundercracks shook the Sheraton at various points throughout the day. Somehow though I've managed to be outside only when the sun is out.
"Buyers value the dollar per square foot, and the builder responds by delivering as many square feet of conditioned space as possible for $X. If he can deliver 100 more square feet than the competition, most buyers think it's a better value."
-Ron Jones, Green Builder Magazine, in The Washington Post.