They can guess where you’re going because they know where you’ve been. The apps, browsers, and social media platforms you use constantly collect data about your habits and locations (in real life and online), which is then sold to the highest bidder. In return, you get free services like Facebook and Gmail. Is that a […]
William Kamkwamba’s fellow villagers worried that he was a malevolent wizard. But the African teen was in fact a talented inventor who taught himself how to build windmills from library books. Up against immense hardship—family tragedy, a hostile government, famine, and catastrophic weather—Kamkwamba found a way to better the lives of everyone in his village. […]
Famine. Flood. Death. Destruction. Science journalist David Wallace-Wells’s vision of Earth’s future has a horrifying cinematic quality. In THE UNINHABITABLE EARTH, Wallace-Wells explores the near-term consequences of global warming. Is it too late to head off disaster? Travel to the end of the world in our latest Instaread.
What happens after you click a link? Something like this: a pop-up window asks if you want to join a mailing list. You accept the site’s cookies, and maybe close a second pop-up ad. Finally, you begin to read—until, somewhere on the page, a loud video starts to play. Fundamentally, the experience of using the […]
Nuclear accidents and secrecy are a terrifying combination. But even a government apparatus as clandestine as the Soviet Union couldn’t hide a disaster on the scale of Chernobyl. While Ukrainians’ mistaken notion that radiation poisoning could be neutralized with vodka was dispelled quickly in the aftermath of the crisis, denial of responsibility and propaganda persisted […]
How do our pets feel about us? Bored with studying the way that humans make decisions, neuroscientist Gregory Berns decided to find out. He used functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) to make the world’s first maps of the canine brain. One of the things Berns wanted to know is whether dogs have emotional lives, or […]
How much of a role does luck play in investments and other important decisions? Former stock trader and influential statistician-philosopher Nassim Nicholas Taleb is uniquely equipped to examine the question—and the answer he finds in FOOLED BY RANDOMNESS might surprise you. Here are two top insights from our latest Instaread. Key Insight 1: The value of a […]
They ruled the planet for 150 million years. And then they were just…gone. Millions of years later, the traces of these giant reptiles—their strange skeletons, with teeth the size of railroad spikes—still inspire a powerful sense of awe. Our Instaread on Steve Brussate’s THE RISE AND FALL OF THE DINOSAURS captures the current state of […]