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Articles on Design

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The golden ratio, which has been a key tenet of modernist design, may have origins in Africa. tatadonets via Getty Images

The African roots of Swiss design

Long thought to have originated in Ancient Greece, the golden ratio that forms the basis of the Swiss design style may have first emerged in Africa.
By encouraging random encounters and free-flowing conversation, coffee shops are engines of innovation. Hulton Archive/Stringer via Getty Images

Why being stuck at home – and unable to hang out in cafes and bars – drains our creativity

By missing out on chance encounters and observations that jolt 'a-ha' moments, new ideas, big and small, go undiscovered.
The J.W. Westcott II is the country’s only floating ZIP code. cactuspinecone/flickr

A dismantled post office destroys more than mail service

Can you find a FedEx store that mimics the design creativity and quality of early US post offices? What are we left with when the best parts of public life are treated like for-profit entities?
Emerald ash borer larvae is removed from an ash tree in Saugerties, N.Y. AP Photo/Mike Groll

Making the most of a tree epidemic

With trees infested by the emerald ash borer deemed essentially worthless, a team of designers wanted to see if the decaying wood could be repurposed as a building material.

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