The Fukushima Surf Revival
“If Fukushima was a book, the cover would be about radiation. But the contents would be totally different. Of course, people never read the contents.” How surfing was revived alongside a community in the wake of a tsunami and nuclear disaster.
How Our Home Delivery Habit Reshaped The World
The great trick of online retail has been to get us to do more shopping while thinking less about it – thinking less, in particular, about how our purchases reach our homes. This divorce of a product from its voyage to us is perhaps the thing that Amazon has sold us most successfully.
The Desert Soil That Could Save Lives
Chile’s desiccated Atacama Desert was once considered a dead zone, but it hides great riches that could help us tackle a major threat to human health. “The premise was that since the conditions are so harsh in the Atacama Desert, organisms become adapted to those conditions.”
What Do We Do With Robert E. Lee?
The president of Washington and Lee University, Will Dudley, understood the depth of his problem the moment he turned on the television and saw hoards of white men in collared shirts and khakis carrying tiki torches as they marched through Charlottesville, Virginia, protesting the removal of a statue of Robert E. Lee.
Flat 13: Facing Down Apartheid
This is the story of the apartment in downtown Johannesburg that, between the late 1940s and early 1960s, became a hub of resistance against apartheid.
Why Japan Is So Successful At Returning Lost Property
Cultural norms, complex religious influences and friendly neighbourhood police officers make losing something in Japan no big deal. But does this tell the whole picture about Japan’s relationship with honesty?
Why 40% Of Vietnamese People Have The Same Last Name
The 14 most popular last names in Vietnam account for well over 90 percent of the population. The 14 most popular last names in the US? Fewer than 6 percent. In Vietnam, the most popular last name is Nguyen.
Collision Course: Why Are Cars Killing More And More Pedestrians?
For drivers, roads are safer than ever – but for people on foot, they are getting deadlier. In 2018, 41% more US pedestrians were killed than in 2008. Car companies and Silicon Valley claim that they have the solution. But is that too good to be true?
Inside The Booming Business Of Background Music
The background music industry – also known as music design, music consultancy or something offered as part of a broader package of “experiential design” or “sensory marketing” – is constantly deciding what we hear as we go about our everyday business. The biggest player in the industry, Mood Media, supplies music to 560,000 locations across the world, from Sainsbury’s to KFC.
The Great American Tax Haven: Why The Super-Rich Love South Dakota
Last year billionaire Sun Hongbin quietly transferred $4.5bn worth of shares in his Chinese real estate firm to a company on a street corner in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. Thanks to its relish for deregulation, the state is fast becoming the most profitable place for the mega-wealthy to park their billions.
‘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.
“Il Capo”, A Striking Look At Marble Quarrying In The Italian Alps
Italian artist and filmmaker Yuri Ancarani captures the otherworldly landscape of Carrara’s marble quarries in the Apuan Alps, Northwest Italy, as Il Capo (The Chief) guides his men through the extraction process in this excerpt by Yuri Ancarani.
Peter Hotez Vs. Measles And The Anti-Vaccination Movement
Texas is at risk of a deadly measles outbreak, and yet few have been willing to cast blame on the state’s combative anti-vaccine movement. Enter Peter Hotez, an affable, bow-tie-wearing scientist who decided he’d had enough.
The Imaginary American Town That Became A Tourist Attraction
Map-makers insert fake towns or trap-streets to catch out plagiarists. The most notable cartographic curiosity is Agloe, immortalized in John Green’s 2008 novel, Paper Towns. When its protagonist Margo disappears, she leaves oblique clues as to her whereabouts. The trail leads to somewhere and nowhere – Agloe.
As Fires Rage In The Amazon, Brazil Massacres Activists Trying To Save The Rain Forest
Jane de Oliveira set out to protect the world’s largest rain forest from the corporate interests that are burning it to the ground. Then the armed men showed up.
The Whale Arctic Visitor Center By Dorte Mandrup
300 km North of the Arctic Circle, on the tip of the island Andøya lies Andenes. A small town located amid dramatic landscapes – both above and below the ocean’s surface. The new Arctic attraction, The Whale, tells the story of the big inhabitants of this underwater world, rising as a soft hill on the rocky shore– as if a giant had lifted a thin layer of the crust of the earth and created a cavity underneath.
Days of Night/Nights of Day
Daily life, work and play, in the northernmost city in the world, Norilsk, Russia (also the 7th most polluted city in the world) — a fascinating, detailed photo report with 45 exquisite images by Elena Chernyshova.
Inside The All-Star Café Baseball Card Heist
A Coen Brothers-esque tale about knuckleheaded kitchen staffers at the All-Star Café, a Hollywood A-lister, the Mona Lisa of baseball cards and a plan that went horribly wrong.
Why Are Millions Of Chinese Kids Parenting Themselves?
Generations of Wang Ying’s family farmed the misty mountains of Liangshan, one of China’s poorest regions. But now, the 14-year-old girl lives on her own as the sole caretaker of her two younger siblings. They are among an estimated 9 million “left-behind children” raising themselves in the Chinese countryside.
The World’s Oldest Winery in Armenia
The Areni-1 complex, uncovered in 2007, contains a 6,100-year-old winery replete with fermenting vats, a grape press, and subterranean clay storage vessels. Altogether, it’s the best-preserved archeological site in the ongoing search for winemaking’s birthplace.
The Climate Crisis Isn’t Coming, It’s Already Here
The climate crises will spell our doom, a disaster that’s not merely on its way—it’s already here. Rosecrans Baldwin embeds with the government agents and the doomsday experts preparing now for the plagues, and the panics, and the fast-approaching day when life on our warming planet finally falls apart.