Data + Design Project

“Merry Christmas Honey! I Got You a Vacuum!” 16 Awkwardly Vintage Christmas Ads

Tuesday 12.09.2014 , Posted by
Bad Xmas Ads 1

They sure don’t make ‘em like they used to… especially when it comes to Christmas advertisements. They were sexist, weird and even downright unhealthy. So grab your matching family pajamas, light up a few smokes, and take a trip down memory lane with these gloriously bad mid-century ads. [Read more…]

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A Secret Underwater Ballroom, Built For a Notorious Victorian Swindler

Tuesday 12.09.2014 , Posted by
Whitley Estate Secret Ballroom 1

Whitley Estate Secret Ballroom 2

Walk far into the woods near the village of Witley in Surrey, England and you’ll find a hidden treasure. The directions go like this: Walk a mile and a quarter west, into the long neglected woods. Find the stone wall surrounding a kitchen garden. There you’ll find a small building with an arched doorway. Go inside, down the spiral staircase, and walk down the long teardrop-shaped tunnel to the end. There’s no “X” marking this treasure, but you’ll know you’ve found it. You’re now in a domed, glass ceilinged room, yellow light gently flickering through the water above. Welcome to Whitaker Wright’s hidden ballroom, submerged deep beneath a murky lake. [Read more…]

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Zaha Hadid: Architecture Unbound

Wednesday 11.19.2014 , Posted by
Zaha Hadid Architect

In the world of inventive contemporary architecture there are a few notable names that come to mind: Frank Gehry, Renzo Piano, Tom Wright, Jean Nouvel and Sir Norman Foster just to name a few. All white men. The architectural world has often been accused of not having enough minorities and women, at least not enough who are lauded on this kind of level. However, one architect who breaks this mold is Zaha Hadid, one of the most famous and important architects of the last thirty years. [Read more…]

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12 Victorian Predictions for the Year 2000

Monday 10.13.2014 , Posted by
Hildebrands Life in the Year 2000 1

One of the most interesting things about looking back at old predictions, is seeing how they turned out when the future date finally rolled around. As a whole, people are pretty bad at guessing what the future will look like (and especially if top hats will be in fashion), but common desires and dreams are still sometimes fulfilled in surprising ways. This set of German cards from around 1899 or 1900 are an excellent and entertaining example.

“Life in the Year 2000” was created by Hildebrands, a leading German chocolate company of the time. Certainly inspired by what the next century would hold, one card from the series was placed in each of their boxes of chocolate. [Read more…]

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It Doesn’t Get Cooler than Motorcycle Chariots

Wednesday 10.08.2014 , Posted by
Motorcycle Chariot Racing 01

Motorcycles have been called “Iron Steeds” for a long time, but the forgotten sport of motorcycle chariot racing really took that horse thing literally.

Yes. Motorcycle. Chariot. Racing. And it looks just as tough as it sounds. [Read more…]

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12 Streamlined Rides from the Age of Art Deco

Friday 09.26.2014 , Posted by
1938 Phantom Corsair 1

From the ’20s to the ’50s a streamlining craze swept the world. Inspired by the rise of the airplane and driven by the need for more efficient vehicles, automakers and dreamers around the globe began sculpting cars into aerodynamic forms with beautifully sweeping lines. Here, we’ve rounded up 12 of our favorite designs from the golden age of streamlining. [Read more…]

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Jennifers and Michaels: Two Maps Reveal the Most Popular Girls and Boys Names Over 6 Decades

Wednesday 09.24.2014 , Posted by
Most-Popular-Female-Name

If you’ve ever been in a class surrounded by people with the same name, they were probably on this map. Jezabel put together two utterly fascinating GIFs tracking the most popular boys and girls names over the last six decades – and it’s an epic battle of popularity. [Read more…]

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4 Lessons From the Life of Orson Welles

Thursday 09.18.2014 , Posted by
03_01

Orson Welles has a varied reputation depending on who you ask. He lived many lives. Some cite his egotism and success as a Broadway theater director during the Depression. Others mention his War of the Worlds broadcast which, according to legend, scared the living daylights out of the American people and convinced many that they were truly being attacked by aliens. Some cite his genius directorship of the ‘greatest movie ever made,’ Citizen Kane. Finally, others mention his uneven and difficult later years; his battles with studios, his ads for California wine and weight gain, and his lack of finished projects. [Read more…]

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How Have We Changed? The Same Locations Filmed 100-Years-Later

Wednesday 09.17.2014 , Posted by
Alkmaar 100 years

A lot of the world has changed in the past 100 years, but a lot has stayed the same too. Dutch photographer Frits de Beer has re-shot the locations of a vintage film featuring his home city, Alkmaar as it appeared a century ago in 1914. This simultaneous glimpse at the past and present reveals just how much things have remained the same for certain places in the world – especially when it comes to architecture. [Read more…]

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Crumbling Soviet-Era Architecture from a Photographer Accused of Espionage

Thursday 09.11.2014 , Posted by
Rebecca Litchfield Soviet Ghosts 1

It’s not every day people go urban exploring in Russia, but English photographer Rebecca Litchfield did it. Over 10 trips into previously Soviet regions she ducked behind fences, risked radiation exposure, was arrested, interrogated and even accused of espionage – all in the name of documenting the relics of the fallen Soviet Union. Her collection of images and the book she recently published are titled Soviet Ghosts. [Read more…]

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