Best Explainer Articles & Videos on the web • Discoverology

Explainers

Read the best explainer articles from around the internet, or watch the most insightful explainer videos from platforms like Youtube, Vimeo or leading publishers like the BBC, New York Times and many others.

What Makes A Masterpiece?

What Makes A Masterpiece?

Art, Explainers, Videos

What do we mean when we call an artwork a masterpiece? Who gets to decide what becomes one? Who makes them? And is it still a constructive label to dole out when we talk about art? What Makes a Masterpiece?

Why Is Chicken So Cheap?

Why Is Chicken So Cheap?

Explainers, Food, Videos

Chickens are the most populous bird on the planet. There are 23 billion of them at any given time – that’s ten times more than any other bird. It’s by far the fastest growing meat product but pound for pound the price of chicken has fallen sharply. How has this happened?

What We Get Wrong About Time

What We Get Wrong About Time

Explainers, Life, Psychology

“Time” is the most frequently used noun in the English language. Most of us tend to think of time as linear, absolute and constantly “running out” – but is that really true? And how can we change our perceptions to feel better about its passing?

How To Sketch Like An Architect

How To Sketch Like An Architect

Architecture, Design, Explainers, Videos

Follow along as Eric Reinholdt from 30X40 Design Workshop works through a few rough sketches for a new project. He discusses the key style points and techniques you can use to develop your own architectural sketching style. Each sketching vignette includes many tips.

The Economy Of Italy, Has The Luck All Run Out?

The Economy Of Italy, Has The Luck All Run Out?

Economics, Explainers, Videos

Once the seat of the roman empire, it is now home to a surprisingly robust yet temperamental economy. The economy of Italy followed a path very similar to that of Germany’s all be it with a little more flamboyancy which has found them where they are today.

How To Find New Music You'll Actually Like

How To Find New Music You'll Actually Like

Art, Explainers, Media

Some people can dig up great music like magic, or have friends inside the industry who keep them updated. Others are perfectly content with their weekly Spotify Discover playlist. But if you need more ways to find music, here are some ideas.

Human Population Through Time

Human Population Through Time

Explainers, Videos, World

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?

Cults: The Holy Business of Being A God

Cults: The Holy Business of Being A God

Explainers, Videos

As a god, your disciples don’t view you as ruling over them even though you are, but as their benevolent leader showing them the light to salvation. A leader that though figuratively and literally followed to the ends of the earth. Now, that is real power.

Bashir Sultani

Inspiration
Bashir Sultani
Google Maps Is Different Depending On Your Location

Google Maps Is Different Depending On Your Location

Explainers, Tech, Videos

If you go on Google Maps in Japan, the region between South Korea and Japan is shown as the “Sea of Japan”. However, if you’re using Google Maps inside South Korea, it will instead appear by the name “East Sea”. Two names for the same body of water on the same site.

The Economic Failure Of Venezuela

The Economic Failure Of Venezuela

Economics, Explainers, Videos

In terms of countries that had it easy Venezuela by all counts should be at the top of the list, it is home to the largest oil deposits in the world, easily beating out the typical oil giants like Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and the United Arab eremites. But they squandered it.

It’s Not You. Phones Are Designed To Be Addicting.

It’s Not You. Phones Are Designed To Be Addicting.

Apps, Explainers, Tech, Videos

Today’s phones are hard to put down. Push notifications buzz in your pocket, red bubbles demand attention, and endless distractions sit at your fingertips. It can feel impossible to pull away from. The 3 design elements that make smartphones so hard to put down, explained by Google’s former design ethicist.

No, You Don’t Really Look Like That

No, You Don’t Really Look Like That

Explainers, Tech

Every digital camera uses algorithms to transform the different wavelengths of light that hit its sensor into an actual image. What makes the iPhone XS’s skin-smoothing remarkable is that it is simply the default for the camera. Snap a selfie, and that’s what you get.

How To Find The Cheapest Flight Possible

How To Find The Cheapest Flight Possible

Explainers

The problem with airfare deals is that you can’t just search for a great deal on a single website. Airfare prices change minute by minute. The old advice was to search for airfare on Tuesday or Wednesday nights, but that no longer applies now that airlines have become so competitive with each other.

Why America Doesn’t Win Wars Anymore

Why America Doesn’t Win Wars Anymore

Explainers, Politics, World

Dominic Tierney believes the US can still successfully fight the wars of yesteryear — World War-style conflicts — but hasn’t yet mastered how to win wars against insurgents, which are smaller fights against groups within countries. The problem is the US continues to involve itself in those kinds of fights.

How You Can Survive — And Thrive In — Midlife

How You Can Survive — And Thrive In — Midlife

Explainers, Life

After two years of research and more than 400 interviews about midlife, former NPR reporter Barb Bradley Hagerty received dozens of insights about how to live well in the middle years. We’ve distilled them here, with a little context.

Nikolay Schegolev

Inspiration
Nikolay Schegolev
Lifetime Free 1st Class Air Travel Pass: A Disaster

Lifetime Free 1st Class Air Travel Pass: A Disaster

Business, Explainers, Videos

In 1982, American Airlines had an idea to offer a lifetime free first-class air travel pass to its wealthiest customers. The person holding this pass could fly on American Airlines at any time it wanted, to any destination it wanted, for as many times it wanted, for the rest of its life after paying a one-time fixed membership fee.

How Ads Follow You Around The Internet

How Ads Follow You Around The Internet

Explainers, Tech, Videos

You’ve seen the pop-ups: “This site uses cookies to improve your experience. Please accept cookies.” Without cookies, the online world we know today couldn’t exist. But that world relies on advertising, which gives three kinds of companies a strong incentive to track your online behavior.

How Airlines Make Meals For Thousands Of People

How Airlines Make Meals For Thousands Of People

Explainers, Food, Videos

For many people economy class used to mean soggy pasta, rubbery eggs and dried-out chicken. For a time U.S airlines even stopped serving free meals altogether in economy class. But in 2019 U.S. airlines posted their tenth straight year of profitability and premium and economy cabins are seeing more food options than ever before.

How Political Opinions Change

How Political Opinions Change

Explainers, Politics, Psychology, Science

A powerful shaping factor about our social and political worlds is how they are structured by group belonging and identities. For instance, researchers have found that moral and emotion messages on contentious political topics, such as gun-control and climate change, spread more rapidly within rather than between ideologically like-minded networks.

How To Tell If You’re Talking To A Bot

How To Tell If You’re Talking To A Bot

Apps, Explainers, Tech

It’s important not to be swayed by fake accounts or waste your time arguing with them, and identifying bots in a Twitter thread has become a strange version of the Turing test. Advances in machine learning hint at how bots could become more humanlike.

How To Explain Anything To Anyone

How To Explain Anything To Anyone

Explainers, Life, Psychology

You were talking about something relatively complex and you could practically see the moment that your listener checked out. Not only is it uncomfortable but it’s also disheartening when what you’re saying is important, cool or valuable to the listener. Here are 4 steps to clearer communication.

The Food Expiration Dates You Should Actually Follow

The Food Expiration Dates You Should Actually Follow

Explainers, Food

Here’s the first thing you should know: Expiration dates are not expiration dates. Food product dating, as the U.S. Department of Agriculture calls it, is completely voluntary for all products — with the exception of baby food. Not only that, but it has nothing to do with safety.

Michael Crichton

Inspiration
Michael Crichton
The Forgotten History Of How Automakers Invented The Crime Of "Jaywalking"

The Forgotten History Of How Automakers Invented The Crime Of "Jaywalking"

Business, Crime, Explainers, History

If there’s traffic in the area and you want to follow the law, you need to find a crosswalk. And if there’s a traffic light, you need to wait for it to change to green. Fail to do so, and you’re committing a crime: jaywalking. It’s the result of an aggressive, forgotten 1920s campaign led by auto groups and manufacturers.

How To Work From Home Without Losing Your Mind

How To Work From Home Without Losing Your Mind

Business, Explainers, Life

Working from home has its perks. You’re always there to accept deliveries. You can play whatever music you want as loudly as you want. You don’t have to abide the loud chewing or ungracious smells of your colleagues. But you also have to contend with the Scylla and Charybdis of isolation and distraction.

How The Dumb Design Of A WWII Plane Led To The Macintosh

How The Dumb Design Of A WWII Plane Led To The Macintosh

Design, Explainers, History, Tech

For all the triumph of America’s new planes and tanks during World War II, a silent reaper stalked the battlefield: accidental deaths and mysterious crashes that no amount of training ever seemed to fix. At first, pilots took the blame for crashes. The true cause, however, lay with the design. That lesson led us into our user-friendly age—but there’s peril to come.

Why Caviar Is So Expensive

Why Caviar Is So Expensive

Explainers, Food, Videos

Caviar is one of the most expensive foods in the world. Selling for up to $35,000 per kilo, it’s revered and relished by aristocrats across the globe. But it’s an acquired taste. Turns out, caviar wasn’t always so valuable.

Here’s How Nicotine Affects Your Brain

Here’s How Nicotine Affects Your Brain

Explainers, Health

With such a focus on the physical concerns around vaping, the main psychoactive ingredient in e-cigarettes, nicotine, is often left out of the conversation. The addictive drug can boost your cognition and won’t give you cancer, but that doesn’t mean it’s safe for casual use.

The Completely Correct Guide To Reclining On An Airplane

The Completely Correct Guide To Reclining On An Airplane

Explainers, Life

One of the touchiest subjects in all of air travel is the seat recline. To some, leaning your seat back on a flight is a no-brainer. Why wouldn’t you take that precious spare space for relief? For others, the sight of the seat in front barreling toward them is a living nightmare.

Why Your Brain Hates Slowpokes

Why Your Brain Hates Slowpokes

Explainers, Health, Life, Psychology

The high speed of society has jammed your internal clock. Not long ago I diagnosed myself with the recently identified condition of sidewalk rage. It’s most pronounced when it comes to a certain friend who is a slow walker.

Why Prices Differ Around the World

Why Prices Differ Around the World

Economics, Explainers, Videos, World

If you have ever traveled somewhere, especially to countries that are either a good deal richer or poorer than your own, you might have noticed that some places are certainly a lot more expensive than others. There seems to be a strong correlation between the average wealth of a country and the cost of goods and services.

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