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Ecological Design
courtesy of Whole Earth Review

While Frank Lloyd Wright-inspired suburbs sprawled across the landscape, a scratchy-voiced radical named R. Buckminster Fuller said: "Optimize the way we use the world's resources. Do more with less. Don't wait for the politicians. See what needs to be done and do it."

John Todd didn't wait for acceptance. He turned Fuller's notions into "living machines" - buildings and whole city blocks that process waste into resources. Jamie Lemer used Fuller's ideas to clean up his city of one million, using the economic throughput of recycling to feed and shelter its homeless people. And Steward Brand published a catalog of tools for similarly inclined "design outlaws": The Whole Earth Catalog.

Ecological Design celebrates the spirit and achievements of these and a dozen other emergent leaders in designing as if nature matters. As we peer into the next millennium, the tools they've developed give hope for a positive future. -Digger