City Notes: Technion unveils 3D architectural lab

Weekly wrap-up of local news around the country.

Technion University (photo credit: Courtesy)
Technion University
(photo credit: Courtesy)
Haifa’s Technion-Israel Institute of Technology last week unveiled a new 3D architectural laboratory.
Technion president Prof. Peretz Lavie and Dean of the Faculty of Architecture and Town Planning Prof.
Yehuda Kalay attended the opening ceremony.
The new visualization lab will be used for research and teaching. It allows virtual 3D “entry” into models of buildings, cities and scenic sites – ones that actually exist and those that are being planned. In the lab is an eight-meter-long concave screen on which a sharp image continuously appears through the use of three synchronized projectors. The lab allows researchers and students to interactively control the model or image, using seven surveillance cameras, sensors and a wireless controller that enable a virtual “trip” through the presentation. Up to 20 people can participate in the experience at one time.
According to university officials, the lab is the first of its kind in Israel, the most advanced in the country and among the leading labs in the world.
The brainchild of Kalay, the lab was established with the participation of five new faculty members at the Technion. Assistant professor Daniel Orenstein led the founding of the lab and will serve as its head, alongside architect and assistant professor Dafna Fisher-Gewirtzman, who planned, designed and supervised its construction.
To mark the opening of the lab, an international workshop called VIZWORLD was held this week, which included seminars, demonstrations and discussions with guest scholars from Israel and abroad.
Kalay said there was a need for such a lab because with it, one can experience a building before it even exists. This will allow architects to find and fix errors during the design process, which is especially important when the project involves complex geometry.
“The lab will be used for research by faculty members and graduate trainees and will be incorporated into the studio courses as a teaching facility,” Fisher-Gewirtzman said. “We anticipate that the use of the lab will add a new tool to our work processes in the studio and open up new possibilities and directions of research.”
Two passengers lightly hurt in road accident
Two passengers were lightly injured in a car accident on Route 71 near the Navot Junction on Monday. It seems that a truck had overturned and hit their car.
Police were investigating the incident.
Templer bowling team plays Israeli team in historic Sarona After 73 years away from their historic home, the Templers played a bowling match on Sunday against the Israeli team in Sarona, Tel Aviv. The nine-pin bowling game was played with the original ball, donated by 75-year-old Templer descendant Helmut Glenk, on an alley that was reconstructed according to three pictures showing how it looked. Glenk, who lives in Australia and has written a book about Sarona, played alongside fellow Templer descendant Hartmut Weller.
Also participating in the event was Tamar Tuchler of the Society for the Preservation of Israel Heritage Sites, who has fought to preserve Sarona, which was slated to become a luxury residential neighborhood.
Tuchler discovered that her grandfather – who immigrated to Israel in the1930s – used to play there when he missed Germany and was the champion of Sarona.
Merav Shaul, the deputy director of municipal company Ahuzat Hahof, bowled for the Israeli team. She has been working to restore the complex, including sports grounds, a tennis court and bowling alley. Shay Farkash, also a member of the Sarona restoration team, played on the Israeli side.
Following their defeat by the Templer team, Farkash and Shaul said, “We, the Israelis, have a lot to learn about this game, how to play it and what the correct original rules are.”
When the Sarona Park opens in the near future, the public will be able to try their hand at Germanstyle bowling and drink beer out of original mugs.
Police bust Ramle forgery operation Police last week busted a forgery operation in Ramle.The police raided several compounds associated with a criminal organization in the city center and uncovered a home laboratory used for making NIS 10 coins. It contained a press, plating material and hundreds of coins suspected of having been forged.
Police also seized weapons and cash, both foreign and Israeli, worth hundreds of thousands of shekels. Some 10 suspects were detained.
Police Insp.-Gen. Yohanan Danino said that the Israel Police “treats the struggle against crime organizations in the same way as it does the fight against terrorism, as both harm and endanger innocent civilians in Israel.”Annual Tel Aviv Piano Festival under way The 15th annual Tel Aviv Piano Festival began this week and is running until tomorrow. Showcasing more than 180 local artists and 40 musical performances, the performances will take place at the Suzanne Dellal Center, the Brodet Center, the Gesher Theater and the Einav Center. Both veteran and up-and-coming artists are participating in the festival, which includes shows for children and adults. There will also be nightly performances at the Suzanne Dellal plaza that are open to the public, weather permitting.
US ambassador’s wife visits Beduin daycare center and Beersheba bilingual school Julie Fisher, the wife of US Ambassador to Israel Dan Shapiro, visited an early childhood day-care center in the Beduin village of Abu Kaf and the Hagar Association’s Jewish Arab bilingual elementary school in Beersheba last week.
The day-care center is part of a program called Parents as Partners, designed to empower the Beduin community.
The program is recognized by the Industry, Trade and Labor Ministry and is run by the Arab-Jewish Center for Equality, Empowerment and Cooperation – Negev Institute for Strategies of Peace and Development. The latter is a partner of the US Embassy.
The Hagar school, which was founded in 2007, receives monetary and in-kind support from the US Embassy and the US Agency for International Development. During her visit to the school, Fisher told the Arab and Jewish sixth graders, “I am pleased to see you, Jews and Arabs, learning together, playing together and trusting each other. Your school demonstrates that language and cultural differences do not have to be obstacles between people, but rather they can provide opportunities to learn from each other.”
Two Beersheba minors allegedly mugged elderly residents Police arrested on Sunday two minors on suspicion of robbing seniors at knifepoint in Beersheba, the Local website reported.
Last Friday, Beersheba police received two separate reports from elderly residents of the city, saying they had been robbed at knifepoint. They told police that they had had to wait to make the calls until their returned home, since the thieves had stolen their cell phones.
The two complainants told investigators that two boys had jumped on them in the middle of the street and threatened them with a knife while stealing their bags. Both incidents occurred in the same area a few minutes apart, according to their reports.
Police said that they had detained two minors and had found the stolen property in their homes the day before. Police invited the victims to the police station to retrieve their possessions.
New tattoo exhibition opens at BGU A new exhibition on tattoo representations in contemporary art opened this week at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev. The exhibition explores a variety of references to and expressions of the tattoo phenomenon in Israeli and international art. Various forms of artwork are covered, such as drawing, painting, embroidery, photography, sculpting, video and installation.
As part of the exhibition, Smithsonian Institution anthropologist Dr. Lars Krutak will deliver a guest lecture on Tuesday titled “Tattoo: The History of Humanity through Pain and Permanence.” He will discuss messages that are encoded in ancient and contemporary forms of tattooing; techniques utilized by indigenous peoples to create indelible body symbols; tattooing practices around the world; and the relation of tattoos to beauty, medicine, power, spirituality and identity.
The exhibition is located in the George Shrut Visitors’ Center in the Samuel and Milada Ayrton University Center on the Marcus Family Campus in Beersheba.