Still The Worst

The picture above shows the underside of a stair landing in an Old-Law tenement, with the structure exposed because leaks from above have caused the plaster to fall. The landing in the stairwell is fireproof because the stair had to be fireproof, and HEY! it’s my old enemy, the Rapp Floor. The link provides some history …

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Book Review: Bold Ventures

Bold Ventures by Charlotte Van den Broeck is, to say the least, an odd book. The subtitle, “Thirteen Tales of Architectural Tragedy” gives a sense of the topic but not entirely. Van den Broeck, a poet most of the time, has assembled stories about buildings whose architects “either killed themselves or are rumored to have …

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Hidden Failure

As some of you know, our email was out of operation yesterday from roughly noon until the evening. We’re addressing the problem and it should not reoccur…but making a promise seems foolish. In the spirit of investigating IT failures as well as structural failures, the reason we did not see this coming is interesting. In …

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Reliability And Failure

The image above shows what our website looked like from about 1PM on Wednesday until about 2PM yesterday. Our email was also intermittently failing during the same period. There are huge differences between the issue of reliability in computer services and structural engineering, but there’s enough similarities to make some discussion worthwhile. As a small …

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