The Tech Giants Are Coming For Our Homes
The likes of Amazon, Google, Samsung, Apple and others are all competing for smart home dominance – but what drove so many of us to invite these multinational corporations into the highly personal spaces where we live?
The Trillion-Dollar Auction To Save The World
Ocean creatures soak up huge amounts of humanity’s carbon mess. Should we value them like financial assets? Governments could confer legal rights on nature, effectively giving ecosystems the right to sue for damages—and incentivizing polluters to not damage them.
Swarms of Teeny Robo-Tractors Will Outmaneuver Tesla’s Driverless Cars
While Elon Musk’s Tesla and Waymo Cars get all the attention — and regulations — autonomous vehicles for farming face fewer tech barriers and could be just as important.
Amazon Is Trying To Control The Underlying Infrastructure Of Our Economy
Jeff Bezos’s big bet is that he can make buying from Amazon so effortless that we won’t notice the company’s creeping grip on commerce and its underlying infrastructure, and that we won’t notice what that dominance costs us. Amazon has unprecedented power to steer our choices.
GauGAN: Changing Sketches Into Photorealistic Masterpieces In Seconds
A deep learning model developed by NVIDIA Research turns rough doodles into highly realistic scenes using generative adversarial networks (GANs). Dubbed GauGAN, the tool is like a smart paintbrush, converting segmentation maps into lifelike images.
Art Forgery Is Easier Than Ever, And It’s A Great Way To Launder Money
More and more rich people are buying art and stashing it in strange places. According to infamous scammers, it’s not even close to legit. In some respects, it mirrors the giant pools of money sloshing around in Manhattan or London real estate—funds that are relatively concentrated in a few hands spending it in a few places.
Meet The Americans Who Moved To Europe And Went Awol On Their Student Loans
The amount of money adults in the US owe due to educations is over $1.3 trillion and jumps up by more than $2,000 every second. The average borrower owes $28,000. Some cash-strapped former students are choosing to leave America behind in order to avoid paying off their giant debts.
Diana Nyad Breaks The Waves
In her sixties, a swimmer revives an old dream: to swim from Cuba to Florida, 111 miles, the equivalent of five English Channel crossings, and the longest open-ocean swim in history. Nyad would have to contend with the strong currents and rough waves of the Gulf Stream, and with sharks and jellyfish.
The Heart Of Today’s Billion-Dollar Sneaker-Collecting Boom Is 35 Years Old
Nowadays, sneakers aren’t just for wearing. They’re an asset class, on display at museums, and fueling an increasingly profitable resale market. Much of that traces back to Nike putting a superstar rookie’s name on a new pair of kicks in 1985.
For African Players, Chasing Hoop Dreams Is A Risky Proposition
As more and more players cross the Atlantic to find stardom in the NBA, unscrupulous coaches and brokers are descending on—and in some cases, trafficking—unsuspecting teens with big aspirations.
Future Shock In The Countryside
Conflicting populations already struggle against the seasonal chaos of floods and droughts. The large industrial centers that power fossil-fuel pollution are at risk—the Pearl River Delta is one—but disproportionate consequences are poised to fall upon areas that did little to contribute.
My Four Miscarriages: Why Is Losing A Pregnancy So Shrouded In Mystery?
After losing four pregnancies, Jennie Agg set out to unravel the science of miscarriage. Then, a few months in, she found out she was pregnant again – just as the coronavirus pandemic hit.
Inside China’s Massive Surveillance Operation
Xinjiang, northwest China, is in a state of surveillance lockdown. Every message, word and movement is monitored for its extremist potential. A million Uyghur muslims are being held in concentration camps.
Unlearning The Myth Of American Innocence
For all their patriotism, Americans rarely think about how their national identities relate to their personal ones. In recent years, however, this national identity has become more difficult to ignore. Americans can no longer travel in foreign countries without noticing the strange weight we carry with us.
The Real Problem With The Cruise Industry
What the novel coronavirus has revealed about the cruise industry is a “hidden in plain sight” problem — an international maritime regulatory structure that obfuscates and often ignores legal and social responsibility, accountability and culpability.
Elon Musk’s Battery Farm Is An Undeniable Success
More than two years after winning an electricity bet, Elon Musk’s resulting Australian solar and wind farm is an almost total success. The facility powers rural South Australia, whose population density falls between Wyoming and Alaska, the two least dense U.S. states.
What Noma Did Next: How The ‘New Nordic’ Is Reshaping The Food World
In our time of climate crisis and inequality, as top chefs dream less of Michelin stars and more of changing the world, the New Nordic movement is reaching beyond haute cuisine into classrooms, supermarkets and parliaments.
Pleas Of Insanity: The Mysterious Case Of Anthony Montwheeler
If Anthony Montwheeler does suffer from a mental illness, one that caused him to become extremely violent, how were the hospital staff and the review board so easily fooled? And, if he does not, why, a month after winning release, did he commit a senseless murder in the full view of multiple witnesses?
The Hollywood Con Queen
She tormented studio executives, actors, makeup artists, security guys, photographers, screenwriters, athletes, even bobsledders and scuba divers for years—until corporate investigator Nicoletta Kotsianas was put on the case.
The Invention Of Money
When the Venetian merchant Marco Polo got to China, he saw many wonders. One of the things that astonished him most, however, was a new invention, implemented by Kublai Khan, a grandson of the great conqueror Genghis. It was paper money, introduced by Kublai in 1260.