China’s Man-Made Forest In The Desert
In 1986, the city of Aksu in China’s Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region began an ambitious tree-planting project that looked to turn swaths of desert into forest. The result was over 13 million acres of green that became the Kekeya greening project.
What’s It Like To Be Among The First To Motorbike In Jordan?
Riding along the Desert Highway, northwest of the famed Wadi Rum on a large-bore, high-powered motorcycle was a joy afforded only by Jordanian royalty for nearly four decades.
Kiribati: A Drowning Paradise In The South Pacific
UN estimates indicate that Kiribati could disappear in just 30 or 40 years. That’s because the average elevation is less than two meters above sea level. And some of the knock-on effects of climate change have made the situation more difficult.
How Barcelona Is Taking City Streets Back From Cars
The city of Barcelona is testing out an urban design trick that can give cities back to pedestrians. It involves taking nine square city blocks and closing off the inside to through traffic. Buses, big freight trucks — or any vehicles that are trying to get from one part of town to the next — have to drive around the perimeter.
The Rise And Fall Of Sega
With an aggressive marketing campaign and a new star in Sonic the Hedgehog, Sega solidified itself as a top contender in the industry and a force to be reckoned with. However, its reign at the top was short-lived, as it eventually caused its own downfall with a series of tragic mistakes.
The Story Of The McBarge, The Floating McDonald’s Restaurant
Take a trip back to the mid 80’s when Vancouver hosted a World’s Fair event with one of the most unique fast food restaurants ever constructed. Friendship 500, or better known as The McBarge.
The World’s Tallest Water Slide Was a Terrible, Tragic Idea
At nearly 169 feet tall, Verrückt was taller than Niagara Falls. Riders flew down the world’s tallest water slide at 70 miles per hour, challenging the laws of physics. Then, on August 7, 2016, 10-year-old Caleb Schwab was decapitated on the ride. What went wrong to cause such a horrific tragedy?
The Million-Dollar Hacker
Tommy DeVoss used to break into websites illicitly. But after serving time for his crimes, he now uses his skills to earn an honest living. Through arrangements known as bug bounty programs, companies pay him to find security holes in their systems. He’s now earned more than $1 million in this emerging profession.
Human Population Through Time
It took 200,000 years for our human population to reach 1 billion—and only 200 years to reach 7 billion. But growth has begun slowing, as women have fewer babies on average. When will our global population peak? And how can we minimize our impact on Earth’s resources, even as we approach 11 billion?
I Was a Chinese Helpline’s Number One Caller. I Had a Problem.
“Thank-you-for-calling-the-Shanghai-Call-Center-how-can-I-help-you?” The “magic number” helped foreigners like me get by without learning the language. But I didn’t feel at home in China until I finally hung up the phone.
Skywatch, A Sci-Fi Proof Of Concept Short Film by Colin Levy
When two outcast teens hack into a ubiquitous drone delivery system to pull a prank on their neighbor, they accidentally crash-land a dangerous prototype – and find themselves entangled in a life-and-death conspiracy. Six years in the making, funded via Kickstarter, and crafted by volunteering vfx artists across the world.
Lisbon’s Outdoor Art Gallery – In Pictures
Street art has transformed Quinta do Mocho, an area once plagued by crime and unemployment. In 2014, local officials decided to improve the district’s image, and invited Portuguese and foreign artists to paint murals for what they now call ‘the biggest open-air art gallery in Europe’.
Why US Economists Are Obsessed With ‘Japanification’
Economists are terrified of how slow growth, low inflation and low interest rates could hit the economy. The Financial Times’ US economics editor Brendan Greeley explains why.
Up In The Air: Meet The Man Who Flies Around The World For Free
Ben Schlappig, 25, is one of the biggest stars among an elite group of obsessive flyers whose mission is to outwit the airlines. They’re self-styled competitors with a singular objective: fly for free, as much as they can, without getting caught.
How IKEA Became Sweden’s National Brand
In 1950, Ingvar Kamprad began selling furniture. Seeing the logistical difficulty of shipping large items far away, Ingvar decided to flat-pack the furniture, which also reduced the chance of damage during transport. The company created a catalog that customers could browse through and order with from afar.
The Ingenious System Bringing Water To The Chinese Desert
The Karez is a modern-day engineering marvel and a prime example of a native people working with, not against, the forces of nature to deliver their needs – in this case, water. Today, this system nourishes an area called Grape Valley, once an oasis for weary travelers along the Silk Road.
Wikkelhouse: Pick Your Modular Segments & Click Them Together
The “Wikkelhouse”, or “wrap house”, is a truly customizable home composed of 5-meter-square (53-square-foot) modules that click together to create any-sized structure. Once “printed”, the basic units can be customized: kitted out as a bathroom, a kitchen or combined bunk rooms can create larger rooms.
The Man Who Drove McDonald’s Out Of Iceland
Tómas Tómasson’s all-American burger joint is so legendary in Iceland, it ousted McDonald’s from the country. It all began back in 1981 when the good folk of Reykjavík, Iceland still thought fish and chips was exotic foreign food. Along came Tommi and taught them to worship a new kind of sustenance: the mighty burger.
Tourism Is Eating The World
The number of international tourist arrivals has been increasing more or less exponentially since the mid-20th century, and totaled about 1.4 billion in 2018. Europe has seen the biggest share, but the Asia-Pacific region is growing fast.