How Air Conditioning Created The Modern City
The shopping mall would have been inconceivable without air conditioning, as would the deep-plan and glass-walled office block, as would computer servers. The expansion of tract housing in postwar suburban America relied on affordable domestic air conditioning units.
Sitzfleisch: The German Concept To Get More Work Done
To have sitzfleisch means the ability to sit still for the long periods of time required to be truly productive; it means the stamina to work through a difficult situation and see a project through to the end. Angela Merkel has it in abundance – how do you cultivate this crucial skill?
Mathematicians Have Solved Traffic Jams, And They’re Begging Cities To Listen
Traffic modeling is a complex branch of applied mathematics, partially because it assumes that drivers are selfish and pursuing their own goals, rather than any predictable or shared efforts.
The Economy Of Italy, Has The Luck All Run Out?
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.
‘It’s A Miracle’: Helsinki’s Radical Solution To Homelessness
Finland is the only country in the European Union where homelessness is falling. Its secret? Giving people homes as soon as they need them – unconditionally.
How To Make An Attractive City
Cities are a big deal. We pretty much all have to live in them. We should try hard to get them right. So few cities are nice, very few out of many thousands are really beautiful; embarrassingly the more appealing ones tend to be old, which is weird because we’re mostly much better at making things now.
Inside The Abandoned Babylon That Saddam Hussein Built
In the 1980s, during the Iran-Iraq War, Saddam Hussein became obsessed with the Babylonian ruler Nebuchadnezzar. Saddam saw himself as a modern reincarnation of Nebuchadnezzar, and to prove it, he spent millions building a massive reconstruction of Babylon.
Toyota To Build Prototype City Of The Future
Toyota revealed plans to build a prototype “city” of the future on a 175-acre site at the base of Mt. Fuji in Japan. Called the Woven City, it will be a fully connected ecosystem powered by hydrogen fuel cells.
The Radical Plan To Save The Fastest Sinking City In The World
Many of our coastal cities are imperiled, but none have plotted an escape quite as audacious as Jakarta’s. President Joko Widodo plans to pick up and move the capital, along with 7 million people.
How Advertising Conquered Urban Space
In cities around the world, advertising is everywhere. We may try to shut it out, but it reflects who we are (or want to be) and connects us to the urban past. Local signs connect us to the past, to vernacular styles, to folklore. The best examples catch our eye as children and stay with us.
The Last Giraffes On Earth
The planet’s tallest animal is in far greater danger than people might think. Until recently, giraffes have suffered from surprising scientific neglect. Few researchers have studied them in the wild, so even basic aspects of their lives remain mysterious.
Under The Darkest Sky
Today, 40 percent of oil and gas rigs working in the United States are located on what is known as the Permian Basin, a vast oil reserve covering 75,000 square miles in West Texas and southeastern New Mexico. A movement is forming to protect the night sky from light pollution given off by the drilling operations.
The End Of Economics?
Economists have fallen in love with the supposed rigor that derives from the assumption that markets function perfectly. But the world has turned out to be more complex and unpredictable than the equations. Human beings are rarely rational—so it’s time we all stopped pretending they are.
Why Do So Many U.S. Cities Have Gridded Streets?
Many U.S. cities were founded with a street grid. Why? This video describes the historic factors that contributed to the adoption of a grid. This includes influential city designs from Versailles, London, Philadelphia, New York, Chicago, and Reno.
The Economics Of Cruise Ships
For decades, cruise companies have gone to great lengths to bypass US employment laws, hiring foreign workers for less than $2/hour. They’ve sheltered themselves as foreign entities while simultaneously benefitting from US taxpayer-funded agencies and resources.
At Baltimore’s National Aquarium, Climate Change Presents Challenges
After a public backlash against marine animal parks brought on by the documentary Blackfish, the aquarium decided to move its prized pod of dolphins to a first-of-its-kind sanctuary.
Iceland Is Growing New Forests For The First Time In 1,000 Years
The landscape of Iceland has changed a lot in a thousand years. When the Vikings first arrived in the ninth century, the land was covered in 25 to 40 percent forest.
2,000 Drones Replace Fireworks On New Year’s Eve In Shanghai
Nearly 2,000 drones took to the night sky and illuminated the Huangpu River in Shanghai to welcome in the new year. At around midnight, the drones gathered to form a running man. It moved forward, showing the changes and achievements Shanghai has made in the past 40 years.
The Healing Power of Gardens
Oliver Sacks on the Psychological and Physiological Consolations of Nature: “In forty years of medical practice, I have found only two types of non-pharmaceutical ‘therapy’ to be vitally important for patients with chronic neurological diseases: music and gardens.”
The Expat English Teachers’ Murderous Triangle
His ease with people, his natural charisma — these things made him a vital piece of the underground foreigner scene in Taipei, a key component of the drug culture. But it was a dangerous game that Sanjay Ryan Ramgahan played, a game that can turn even the safest of places into the deadliest of traps. Once he fell into it, there was no charming his way out.