Meanwhile in … Nairobi, Kenya, rollerblading is becoming an established sport.


In Nairobi, Kenya, rollerblading is becoming an established sport. The streets of the city are experiencing a flashback to the 1990s, when in-line skating reigned supreme in many Western nations. After the trend fell off, donated skates eventually arrived in Nairobi, where the supply is fueling the booming trend. The sport has moved from the underground to the middle class, and skaters can often be seen weaving through the city’s traffic. Many children are now receiving lessons, perhaps hoping to emulate the success of Kenyans who have placed well in recent African speed-skating championships. (The Guardian)

In College Park, Md., researchers invented a fabric that can cool or warm the body. The material has two types of special threads inside it that react to sweat. That means that when the strands get wet, they warp, allowing more heat to escape through the fabric. When the fabric is cool and dry, the threads return to their original, warmer configuration. The fabric isn’t market-ready yet, but scientists have high hopes for its commercial applications. (Boy Genius Report)

In the Seto Inland Sea, Japan, an island is being covered in contemporary art. Visitors can reach the “art island” of Naoshima by ferry and stay there overnight as they explore the numerous scattered installations. Many of them are interactive; they include underground galleries, mazes, a giant pumpkin, and the Claude Monet Space, where works by the famous impressionist are mirrored and refracted in thousands of tiny white tiles. Construction on the island began in earnest in the 1990s, and many of the works were created by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Tadao Ando. (CNN)

Recommended: Meanwhile in … Belén, Costa Rica, a recycling drive set a new world record for bottle collection.

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