Facebook commissions Frank Gehry for new eco-friendly engineering campus

mark zuckerberg meeting frank gehry

Only nine months after its move to a brand new Menlo Park campus, Facebook is already expanding with the help of none other than architect, Frank Gehry.

Renowned for illusory buildings that appear to defy physics with complex shapes and spatial defiance in the Deconstructivism style, Gehry has been most well known for works including the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao in Spain, the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles, and the Dancing House in Prague.

While critics contend that Gehry’s works are ostentatious, his work has been commissioned by many major cities and corporations, making his buildings testaments of success to the places that erect them.

“[Gehry’s] cultural centres appear as sites of spectacular spectatorship, of touristic awe,” says art critic Hal Foster. “Such is the logic of many cultural centres today, designed, alongside theme parks and sports complexes, to assist in the corporate ‘revival’ of the city. Alas, so it has, and it is likely to come to your hometown soon.”

The Disney Concert Hall for one was an iconic status symbol commissioned by the city of Los Angeles, built with the help of Lillian Disney’s $50 million donation. But the construction became embroiled in controversy when the budget soared fivefold to $265 million.

frank gehry building new facebook campusWith this in mind, Facebook’s new campus is more than just a new building. After its IPO, Facebook needs to expand to a building that will house 2,800 more employees. More importantly, a Gehry building will be monument to Facebook for having overcome the many milestones and obstacles, which Mark Zuckerberg likely recognized with his decision to contract Gehry.

Facebook has instructed Gehry to build a hub with its engineering culture in mind. The building will be comprised of one large room, resembling a warehouse wherein employees, like at Valve, will sit on desks that can be “quickly shuffled around as teams form and break apart around projects.” The building, sticking to its eco-friendly standards, will be surrounded and covered by trees on its rooftop garden. The two campuses will be connected by an underground tunnel.

Construction of the new Facebook building will begin in early 2013.

Emerging Tech

Google’s radar-sensing tech could make any object smart

Computer scientists have shown how Google’s Soli sensor can be used to make dumb objects smart. Here's why radar-powered computing could finally make the dream of smart homes a reality.
Social Media

Facebook just added a petition tool. What could possibly go wrong?

Facebook now has a petition tool called Community Action. Facebook Community Actions allow users to create or support a cause. But is the feature just asking for trouble on a network already plagued by fake news and fake accounts?
Social Media

Facebook reportedly developing LOL meme app to try to appeal to teens

Facebook is reportedly developing an app named LOL, which will feature memes in the form of funny videos and GIF-like clips. The app is said to be in testing in a very limited private beta, but sources said that the app is "cringey."
Smart Home

Busted: Facebook Portal gets 5-star reviews from company employees

It's fair to say that Facebook's Portal smart display received a tepid response at launch, so it was something of a surprise to see lots of glowing reviews of the device on Amazon. Turns out some were written by Facebook workers.
Social Media

Nearly 75 percent of U.S. users don’t realize Facebook tracks their interests

Did you know Facebook tracks your interests, including political and multicultural affiliations? According to a recent Pew study, 74 percent of adult users in the U.S. have no idea Facebook keeps a running list of your interests.
Emerging Tech

Tiny microbots fold like origami to travel through the human body

Tiny robots modeled after bacteria could be used to deliver drugs to hard to reach areas of the human body. Scientists have developed elastic microbots that can change their shape depending on their environment.
Emerging Tech

Dinosaurs never stood a chance after asteroid impacts doubled 290M years ago

The number of asteroids pummeling Earth jumped dramatically around 290 million years ago. By looking at Moon craters, scientists discovered that d the number of asteroid impacts on both Earth and the Moon increased by two to three times.
Emerging Tech

Saturn didn’t always have rings, according to new analysis of Cassini data

Saturn's rings are younger than previously believed, according to new data gathered from the Cassini mission. The rings are certainly less than 100 million years old and perhaps as young as 10 million years old.
Emerging Tech

Water-based fuel cell converts carbon emissions to electricity

Scientists from Korea's Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology have developed a system which can continuously produce electrical energy and hydrogen by dissolving carbon dioxide in an aqueous solution.
Emerging Tech

Scientists investigate how massive stars die in dramatic hypernova events

Our Sun will gradually fade before expanding into a red giant at the end of its life. But larger mass stars undergo extreme explosive events called hypernovas when they die which outshine their entire galaxies.
Emerging Tech

Pilotless planes are on their way, but would you fly in one?

Airbus says advancements in artificial intelligence can help it toward its goal of building a plane capable of fully autonomous flight, though whether passengers can be persuaded to travel in one is another matter entirely.
Emerging Tech

‘Tech vest’ prevents Amazon workers from colliding with robot co-workers

Amazon workers at its fulfillment centers are using "tech vests" to help protect them from collisions with their robot co-workers. The robots already have obstacle avoidance sensors, but the belt offers another layer of safety.
Emerging Tech

3D printers are finally affordable. Here are the best models under $500

3D printer prices have dropped dramatically over the past few years, but just because something is cheap doesn’t mean it’s worth buying. Here, we’ve rounded up all the cheap 3D printers that are actually worth spending your money on.
Mobile

T-Mobile 5G rollout: Here is everything you need to know

2019 will be a huge year for T-Mobile. Not only is a merger with Sprint likely, but T-Mobile is also in the midst of building out its next-generation mobile service. Here's everything you need to know about the T-Mobile 5G rollout.