This second day of the course was much interesting and right to the point of its program.
To begin with, we were shown a video entitled “Growing solutions”, which showed experiments (carried out at TUDelft), whose aim was that of exploiting nature in a respectful and successful way. In particular, it was really interesting the innovation of extracting taxol from plants: other than being a more economical procedure than the traditional one, the importance of taxol is fundamental since it’s helpful against cancer.
This video was certainly interesting, but it actually showed me how hard innovation can be. In fact, it is not enough to find a solution, but it’s even more important to communicate its validity and try to implement methods to make it affordable and feasible of massive production if necessary. Otherwise, the invention-innovation will remain quite ideal and detached from society problems.
Moreover, the course held in the afternoon by Mr. Videlan in the afternoon about “Nature based” and “Problem based” approaches was illuminating. After the study of bees behavior he came up with a knowledge about efficient cooperation among hundreds of beings: from the direct observation of nature, practical and useful information was taken out. Instead, when asked of solving the problem of telecommunication, he moved its attention toward they way animals succeeded in communicating: different frequencies and intensity of the sound were the main keys to message discrimination.
At this point we had actually been given a real case of biomimicry.
We were then assigned to our project groups, each one studying different aspect concerning the “Bio-based engineering building”: food and waste products, water, energy, information and structure.
Everyone was asked to write suggestions on paper sheets, which were later divided in the 5 topics named above. These suggestions were the preliminary material for each group: starting from these points, solutions were searched on the web, in particular in asknature.com, a website suggested during class.
The work for the day was over.
Now I’m looking forward to tomorrow, because the tasks will be as interesting as challenging: it will be hard to try to put everything together, but if we succeed, the result will beimportant.