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Inspiration comes in many forms — images, words, music, and more. As part of staying  #FluentInDesign, the team at Hunter Douglas keeps our eyes out for things that open our imaginations. Here are some fun, intriguing and inspirational items that piqued our interest this week. We hope they “pique” you, too! Please tweet us (@FluentInDesign) or email us with any feedback or ideas… our address is fluent@hunterdouglas.com.

Olympic dreams. With opening ceremonies beginning tonight, August 5,  much of the world will turn its  attention to Brazil. In addition to watching the world’s leading athletes, people will focus on the spaces in which they compete. Past Olympics have at times left large and little-used buildings in their wake. Spaces that shine briefly and then fall into disrepair. By contrast, Rio plans to use components of its Olympic arenas to create schools, dormitories and more. Wired has more on the city’s plans.

Smart city. Some trends indicate that about 86 percent of people in developed countries and 64 percent of people in developing countries will live in cities by 2050. As urban populations continue to grow, resources will become scarce, making technology a key component to efficiency and sustainability. From smart energy to smart care, readwrite examines five key technologies of a smart city.

Bookworms. This space may be every booklover’s dream location: a century-old theater converted into a 21,000-square-foot bookstore. Originally built in 1919, El Ateneo Grand Splendid in Buenos Aires has undergone several revisions before landing on its current purpose. According to Colossal, “Despite the switching of functions, the architecture has remained true to the early 20th century vision of Peró and Torres Armengol, the building still boasting ornate frescoed ceilings and detailed trimmings that line the ceiling, handrails, and walls.”

Refugee structures. Photographer Marco Tiberio explored the Calais Jungle, a French refugee camp infamous for poor security (especially for women), terrible sanitation, and frequent flooding. Tiberio sought to illustrate refugees’ resilience in the face of such challenges by showing the structures they build. Despite -- or perhaps because of -- a lack of resources, his photographs capture distinct differences among the shelters they build. FastCo. has more.

  Image Credit: Photo by Robb Williamson via Wired

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