WIRED

Ah, happiness. Such a strange, elusive beast. In the new feature documentary, The Happy Film, filmmaker and designer Stefan Sagmeister explores the emotion by putting himself through a series of self-guided experiments in order to find out if he can manufacture the feeling. For the past seven years, he has been operating on a weekly happiness 1-10 rating scale system and exploring three methods for finding happiness: meditation, cognitive behavioral therapy and psychotropic drugs. The quirky, thought-provoking film born from this endeavor recently premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival. Interested? You can read WIRED’s review of it here.

Crazy spy cameras always seem like cheesy, fictionalized objects, recalling mid-20th century spy films and James Bond tricks. However, concealed cameras were actually a real thing back in the day. Resembling anything from guns to books, these miniature cameras took a variety of different forms and show an interesting side to the history of photographic technology.

THERE’S AN OCEAN of plastic balls in the National Building Museum, one million translucent spheres dumped into the its great hall to create a stark synthetic white beach. 

Visitors are encouraged to swim in this ocean, to flop around like a toddler in a McDonald’s playhouse. Except this playhouse covers 10,000 square feet and is surrounded by sand (actually, white astroturf), beach chairs, and a snack bar serving wine and cheese. It is, for all intents and purposes, a beach in the middle of a building in the middle of Washington D.C. Oh, it’s also air-conditioned.

Snarkitecture, the Brooklyn architecture studio known for its monochromatic aesthetic, designed the “beach” as part of the National Building Museum’s interactive installation series. You could think of it as the answer to the annual Serpentine Galleries’ pavilion program, which taps an architect to design an imaginative outdoor structure. Last year Bjarke Ingels constructed a wooden labyrinth in the great hall; this year, Snarkitecture transformed the atrium into an arctic sea of balls. Read more.