Monday, October 1, 2007

Concave comes back

The founder of the largest Japanese athletic shoe company Asics, Kihachiro Onitsuka, passed away at age 89. Back in 1951, inspired by his lunch, he invented the company’s trademark Onitsuka Tiger basketball shoe by employing the concave shape of octopus suckers.

In math, when you connect any two points on a concave curve the resulting line segment does not intersect the curve. And a concave function is one that is open only on the bottom.

In preparation for the 2012 Olympics, Land Securities has planned a 37-story concave-shaped building in East London designed by architect Rafael Vinoly. The building’s unusual top-heavy shape seeks to maximize rental income from having bigger floors on top where the view is best.

Maybe tenants could even avoid the elevator by using Onitsuka Tiger shoes.

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