Blow Your Mind: Life on the 500th Floor

BY Robert Lamb / POSTED December 23, 2010
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Too high? (John Lund/Photographer’s Choice/Getty Images)

Arcological megacities that span whole continents, pyramids of steel and skyscrapers that blot out the sun — we can’t help but stuff our minds with such futuristic skylines.

Some megalopolitan visions brim with optimism, such as those of Walt Disney and Frank Lloyd Wright. Others, like the surrealist nightmares of Irving Norman and the Los Angeles of “Blade Runner,” express far bleaker outlooks.

Life on the 500th Floor
What will the skyscrapers of the future really look like? In our “Life on the 500th Floor” episode, Julie and I look at both past and current plans for vertical living and farming. Just how does the future look now? We also consider the engineering and social challenges that stand in the way of creating an architectural utopia. Here is stunning video preview what we’re talking about (images of Frank Lloyd Wright’s designs for the Illinois building).

STREAM THE EPISODE RIGHT HERE:

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The Rock Star Weirdo Lives of Scientists
A scientist’s brain is a complex place, and even history’s greatest scientific minds were filled with hallways of occult, theological and hedonistic trinkets. In this episode, Julie and I enter these labyrinths to discuss just what Tycho Brahe, Sir Isaac Newton and Johannes Kepler were thinking.

STREAM THE EPISODE RIGHT HERE:

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Plus, John C. Lilly helped open the doors for modern dolphin research in the late 1950s, but his research veered into less scientific waters. Prepare yourself for flooded apartments, dolphin roommates and psychedelic isolation chambers. Oh my, get a taste of what happens when you spend part of your grant money on LSD:

So there you have it! Find us on iTunes, Zune, RSS feed and the HowStuffWorks App!

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