Maryam Mirzakhani Wins Fields Medal

Image credit: Maryam Mirzakhani

The equation for getting young women interested in math just got simplified. In August 2014, Stanford Math Professor Maryam Mirzakhani won the Fields Medal. Considered the Nobel of prize of mathematics, it is the the first time a female has received the award in it's 80 year history, as well as the first time an Iranian has won the medal.

Advanced Style | Blog & New Film Celebrate our Stylish Elders

Here at Future-ish, especially with our Stylish Scientist List, we often get labelled as promoting too much consumerism, fashion, etc. What we have always felt is that true style, the essence of style is about expressing yourself and your individuality in all of the personal lifestyle choices you fashion, in food, in travel, etc. We can't think of a better example of exactly this point than the internationally renowned blog Advanced Style that has now made it's way into a full documentary (see video below).

Curated and written by Ari Seth Cohen, the blog and film project highlight some of our most creative and stylish 'Elders' in New York City and around the world, schooling us all on how to live life to the fullest. What is clear form Cohen's sparkling subjects is that expressing oneself and one's individuality only gets better with age.

hitchBOT | Robot Road Trip

If you don't know about hitchBOT, you should. It is the unfolding story of a little robot that could...make it all the way across Canada on it's own. hitchBOT's journey makes us conjure up Kerouac adventures, Motorcycle Diaries, and all sorts of human road trip stories. Can't wait to see how hitchBOT's trek turns out at the end of its summer excursion. Probably one of the first times a robot has been out on its own in the human world.

SeanChron | Kapa-Dyeing Class

The many colors of Kapa dyes

2 August 2014 | I had the great pleasure and honor of taking a kapa-dyeing class during my recent vacation on Maui. Held at the Maui Nui Botanical Gardens, the class was led by Kumus Lisa Schattenburg-Raymond and Auntie Lei Ishikawa.

Kumus Lisa Schattenburg-Raymond and Aunty Lei Ishikawa leading the class

Maʻo hau hele (hibiscus) for blue Kapa dye

ʻUkiʻuki for blue Kapa dye

Maʻo hau hele afta boiled

Māmaki leaves for brown Kapa dye

Māmaki Kapa dye in action

Kalo ʻEleʻele (taro) for red Kapa dye

The product of my day of Kapa dyeing (though these swatches are actually cotton). Mahalo nui loa to Kumu Lisa and Kumu Lei for such a wonderful class! Da dyes are so nani!

Mahalo to Lisa and Auntie Lei for teaching such a wonderful class and to all my classmates for putting up with the haole. Can't wait to try some dyes at home.

SeanChron | Travel Review | Manawai Estate Chocolate

Being Sustainable Sean as well as Next Century Sean, I often try to connect into the new and noteworthy sustainability efforts whenever I travel. Each trip I take to Maui I do my best to add explore and share a new find. This trip I was lucky enough to get a heads up from Nicolette Van Der Lee at UH Maui College's Sustainable Living Institute of Maui (SLIM) about Manawai Estate Chocolate, a new seven-acre sustainable cacao farm near Haiku on Maui. I signed up for the tour straight away and am so happy that I did. My tour and time at Manawai Estate Chocolate will remain one of my favorite Maui experiences for a long time.

The tour was led by owner and Chef Melanie Boudar, a Master Chocolatier and Master Gardner, along with business partner Mark Meador and staff cacao guru Sinead Byrne. The farm is still in the startup phase so the tour itself lasted about 45 minutes but was packed full of history and information about the journey Melanie and the team had faced in getting the farm established.

Following the tour was an opportunity to taste the cacao bean as Melanie and the team led us through the process of making chocolate from roasted bean to a tasty beverage that we enjoyed on the spot, approximately another 45 minutes.

Next up and certainly the icing on the cake, was an opportunity to taste test chocolates (in bar form) from around the world and from Hawaii. Run much like a wine tasting, it was fantastic to have cacao aficionados leading us through the the intricate history and differences of cacao around the world and then honing in on the product options from Hawaii. All of them were ono (delicious) by the way but when tasted together, the subtle differences to become more prevalent.

All in all, a wonderful afternoon on a beautiful sustainable farm with great people learning and tasting great cacao and chocolate. I will certainly do it again and I highly recommend it if you are visiting Maui in the future. And make sure to support Chef Melanie's other chocolate venture online or in Wailea, Sweet Paradise Chocolate.

Cracking the cocoa beans for winnowing

Time for hand grinding the cocoa beans

The outcome of our labor and fantastic education sling the way...handmade-on-the-spot cocoa SO ono!

The tools of processing cocoa beans and making chocolate

Now time for chocolate tasting

Pictured above: Mark, Sinead, Melanie, and Nicolette. A Huge MAHALO NUI LOA to Manawai Estate Chocolate for the fantastic tour and tasting and to Nicolette from UH Maui for making the connection!

SeanChron | Restaurant Review | Star Noodle

The Cowboy vs Samurai - muddled pear, jack, Pinot, lime sour, simple syrup, soda. This has been my favorite drink on the planet for several years now.

29 July 2014 | I have been to Star Noodle on Maui many times now and can guarantee that I will go back again and again...each time I visit Maui and for repeats during my vacation time on Maui. I actually went twice this current trip.

Although the location at the top of an industrial park area throws some people off, in many ways it makes the whole Start Noodle experience even more authentic. The atmosphere in fairly small space that makes up Star Noodle is modern yet comfortable and familiar and menu is short but descriptive for the many and diverse items that appear on it.

The bartenders are cocktail geniuses creating some of the best cocktails I have ever tasted, seriously (the Cowboy vs. Samurai is a must). And the never ceases to both satisfy and amaze me. I've had several of the food items below on previous trips and they seem better each time I have them. Now that I'm what I call a "Nebraskatarian" (no farmed meats of any sort, wild meat OK) I did have to pass on the out-of-this-world pork buns but I did add the shrimp this time...ONO! The malasadas are still some of the best I've had.

Prices do start to break into the pricey realm but you can do Star Noodle on a lower budget if you have strength and don't end up getting dish after dish.

Avi Avo - ahi with lemon pressed olive oil, sambal, usukuchi

Tempura Shrimp - colossal prawns, faux'nagi sauce, garlic aioli

Scallop Shots - wafu dashi, ginger, scallion, lemon EVOO

Orange, Ginger Margarita

And finish with the malasadas

SeanChron | Restaurant Review | Lehua Lounge at Andaz

4 August 2014 | I must confess, the Lehua Lounge at the Andaz Maui at Wailea (a Hyatt property) on Maui was a last-minute addition for drinks and appetizers on my way to another restaurant in the Wailea resort area. But OMG, am I SO glad I went.

Located at the pool level of the resort, the experience begins with a walk through the kalo (taro) pools at the entrance of the Andaz. I could easily have spent an hour in this long outside hallway looking at the beautiful installation. The Andaz interiors and views are stunning. Modern architecture is accentuated with contemporary large-scale sculptural artwork that requires your mind and body to relax the deeper you go into the property. Elements are contemporary but references to traditional elements of Hawaiian culture are mixed in sensibly so one does still feel that you are on a Hawaiian island (versus some resorts that reference other cultures in their design).

Kalo pond along the grand entry to the Andaz

Once at the lounge, the almost spa-like experience continues. The menu design is simple and fresh with excellent details on both the very creative cocktails (by Julie Reiner) and food items. I would call the tableware elegant, artistic Hawaiian and it was quite beautiful in itself (as you can tell by my love for the silverware presentation in the photos below). Service was superb throughout my entire visit to the Lehua Lounge. The mixology by Julie Reiner was absolutely superb and spot-on for celebrating the flavors of Hawaii. I wish I could have tried each of her creations.

I have to say the appetizer plates were the biggest surprise, stunning visually and in their flavor profiles. The dishes started with fresh, local ingredients but they elevated the individual and combined elements completely. I could have eaten six more helpings of the Kula corn. Like the cocktails, I wish I could have tried all of the small plates but alas, I was off to a full dinner after Lehua Lounge. Prices were very reasonable and well matched to the quality of the cocktails and food.

Lehua Lounge is a must for any foodie visiting Maui. I can't wait to go back and try more of the cocktails and small dishes, as well as explore the large plates.

The Upcountry Buck - white rum, ginger syrup, lime, pineapple, angostura bitters, soda. Cocktails by Julie Reiner.

I had a huge crush on the silverware presentation

more crush on the silverware presentation

Brussels Sprouts - cowboy jerky, sweet soy, radish, cucumber

Kula Corn on the Cob - pink salt, feta, date butter

A little extra candied ginger love...cuz it was so ono

Southside Fizz - gin, lime, cucumber, mint, soda. Cocktails by Julie Reiner.

SeanChron | Restaurant Review | Migrant

4 August 2014 | One of the foodie stops I was most looking forward to on my trip to Maui was Chef Sheldon Simeon's new restaurant, Migrant. Thoroughly modern yet paying full respect to the casual, friendly, and familiar elements of the migrant cultures and traditions that inspired Chef Sheldon's concept, Migrant lived up to my every expectation.

Nestled in the Wailea Beach Marriott, the interior design was modern Hawaii with clear references to the diverse cultures of the islands, the menu design was fresh and graphic, and the tableware was contemporary eclectic. Service still had a bit of that new restaurant feel to it with small glitches still being worked but the entire staff was very attentive. Each of the dishes had obvious traditional roots but Chef Sheldon's interpretations were well thought out featuring both simplicity in concept but complexity in flavor. Prices were quite affordable and well matched to the creativity and quality of the dishes.

I will certainly go back soon and often (even though it on the opposite side of the Maui from where I generally stay) and have already referred many friends.

The glass art torches at Migrant

Special cocktail - "sunset punch" watermelon, lilikoi , gin, St. Germaine

Chicharrón with Chili Pepper water

Seared Diver Scallops - garlic won ton cereal, yuzu aioli, palm sugar teriyaki, yukari. Apologies on photo quality, evening iPhone shot in dim lighting

Passion Fruit, Orange, Guava (POG) Deconstructed. Apologies on photo quality, evening iPhone shot in dim lighting

Pineapple "Upside Down" Cake . Apologies on photo quality, evening iPhone shot in dim lighting