99% Invisible
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99% Invisible-26- Chicago’s Jailhouse Skyscraper

99% Invisible

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99% Invisible-26- Chicago’s Jailhouse Skyscraper

99% Invisible

Design is everywhere in our lives, perhaps most importantly in the places where we've just stopped noticing. 99% Invisible is a weekly exploration of the process and power of design and architecture. From award winning producer Roman Mars. Learn more at 99percentinvisible.org. A proud member of Radiotopia, from PRX. Learn more at radiotopia.fm.

99% Invisible

The Metropolitan Correctional Center, or MCC, is a federal jail right in the middle of downtown Chicago. It’s a triangle-shaped skyscraper, 27 stories, with tall, super-narrow, irregularly-spaced windows up and down each wall. The outside walls look like old computer … Continue reading →

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-25- Unsung Icons of Soviet Design
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There’s something that links most of the everyday objects presented in “Made in Russia: Unsung Icons of Soviet Design.” But it’s hard to tell exactly what that is just by looking at this collection of wobbly dolls, drinking glasses, primitive … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-24- The Capitol Columns
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If you were present for any of the presidential inaugurations, from Andrew Jackson to Dwight D. Eisenhower, you saw the solemn oath of office taken between twenty-two smooth, sandstone columns at the East Portico of the U.S. Capitol Building. The … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-23- You Are Listening To + Radio Net
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youarelistening.to appeared online on March 6, 2011 and I was hooked instantly. The combination of the police scanner and ambient music is an intriguing, and distinctly live, experience (unlike most of the time shifted audio I tend to consume). Its … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-22- Free Speech Monument
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In 1989, a group called the Berkeley Art Project decided to hold a national public art competition to create a monument that would commemorate the 25th anniversary of the Free Speech Movement, which began on the University of California Berkeley … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-21- BLDGBLOG: On Sound
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Most sound design in architecture is centered around designing for silence. Buildings are trying to block out that constant stream noise from the street and insulate you from those jarring clangs of industry. Geoff Manaugh loves the intersection of sound … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-20- Nikko Concrete Commando
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In 2001, Delfin Vigil was walking the streets of San Francisco and ran across the name “Nikko” carved into the concrete sidewalk. After seeing Nikko once, Delfin began to see the name everywhere. One block after another, there he was … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-19X- RJDJ Reactive Music
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This week, the radio audience heard episode #10, but for you web and podcast listeners, I have a story I did about a year and a half ago, about the reactive music app called RJDJ. I did this piece for … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-19- Liberation Squares plus NY Dick
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In a recent piece from Urban Omnibus, Vishaan Chakrabarti (Professor at the Graduate School for Architecture, Planning and Preservation at Columbia University), wrote about how urban open spaces contribute to political change, “Public spaces like Tompkins Square, Tiananmen Square and … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible-18- Check Cashing Stores
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A few years ago, journalist Douglas McGray learned that the largest chain of check cashing stores in Southern California, Nix Check Cashing, was being bought by the nation’s largest credit union, Kinecta. The credit union thought it had something to … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-17- Concrete Furniture
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The New City Hall, designed by Finnish architect Viljo Revell, was the first modern, concrete, civic building in Toronto. When it opened in 1965, it stood out very prominently in the traditional Victorian fabric of the city. The striking concrete … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-16- A Designed Language
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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-15- Sounds of the Artificial World
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Without all the beeps and chimes, without sonic feedback, all of your modern conveniences would be very hard to use. If a device and its sounds are designed correctly, it creates a special “theater of the mind” that users completely … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-14- Periodic Table
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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-13x-Game Over (Snap Judgment)
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99% Invisible Extra! The tape rolls as we witness the tearful end of a perfect online world. This is a piece I did for Snap Judgment, based on a story from Robert Ashley’s brilliant A Life Well Wasted internet radio … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-13- Maps
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I’m sorry, but if you don’t love maps, I don’t think we can be friends anymore. Maps are amazing. They are art and story. A representation of where we are and where we wish we could be. They’ve always had … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-12- 99% Guilt Free
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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-11- 99% Undesigned
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Almost everything in modern life is designed to waste energy. The whole system evolved on a false premise that petroleum is cheap and plentiful and will be that way forever. The awesome Lisa Margonelli, author of Oil on The Brain … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-10- 99% Sound and Feel
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Chris Downey explains it like this, “Beethoven continued to write music, even some of his best music, after he lost his hearing…What’s more preposterous, composing music you can’t hear, or designing architecture you can’t see?” Chris Downey had been an … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-09X-99% Doomed
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99% Invisible Extra! NASA is figuring out how to take the next great leap into space. The difficulty is, if we leap to Mars, we might not make it back. This is a story I produced last year (Summer 2009) … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-09- 99% Private
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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-08- 99% Free Parking
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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-07- 99% Alien
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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-06- 99% Symbolic
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Before I moved to Chicago in 2005, I didn’t even know cities had their own flags. In Chicago, the city flag is everywhere. It’s incorporated into all different aspects of city life and the design elements are used on businesses, … Continue reading →...

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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-05- 99% Forgotten
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99% Invisible

99% Invisible-04- 99% Details
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