The Influencer And The Hit Man
How a years-long domain name feud for DoItForState.com ended in a bloody shootout. “Do It For State” is the hyperviral tagline associated with the social media company State Snaps, which aggregates and posts debaucherous college-aged behavior on its Instagram, Snapchat, and Twitter.
The Great Whiskey Heist
A police investigation rippled throughout greater Frankfort, Kentucky, revealing a web of theft that ensnared husbands and wives, fathers and sons, CrossFit instructors and jealous ex-girlfriends — and lots of locals with stolen whiskey on their shelves.
The Great Buenos Aires Bank Heist
They were an all-star crew. They cooked up the perfect plan. And when they pulled off the caper of the century, it made them more than a fortune—it made them folk heroes.
Why Government Websites Fail
While the rest of the world has evolved to a place where we can track anything at all times and order anything from anywhere, government has been hopelessly stranded on an island in 1993.
Inside The Most Watched YouTube Channel In The World
India’s T-Series built an online empire from Bollywood. Now it has to survive Netflix. Bhushan Kumar argues that T-Series has no reason to fear this invasion, and not just because it sits behind a moat filled with more than 200 million YouTube subscribers.
We Asked An AI To Write A Column For Us. The Results Were Wild
We’ve been testing weekly short fiction pieces scribed by GPT-2, a text-generating artificial intelligence algorithm originally built by OpenAI. We give the algorithm a sentence from a real article, and the algorithm iteratively generates what it thinks the next word should be.
The Day We Discovered Our Parents Were Russian Spies
For years Donald Heathfield, Tracey Foley and their two children lived the American dream. Then an FBI raid revealed the truth: they were agents of Putin’s Russia. Their real names were Andrei Bezrukov and Elena Vavilova. Their sons tell their story.
How Technology Is Shaping The World Of Footwear
Over the past decade, one of the best examples of where tech has flourished is the footwear industry. From self-lacing tech to cushioning systems made from tiny foam particles, brands like Nike, Adidas and others have gone all out trying to change what footwear design means.
Who Killed Two Journalists In Ukraine? And Why?
An investigation and trial has answered some of the questions about what happened to Andrei Mironov and the Italian photographer he was accompanying. Yet so much remains uncertain. Theirs is a story of the murky nature of facts in a war zone. It’s a story of elusive moral clarity in a land where death comes from who knows where.
Is Big Tech Good For Your Health?
Health care is in the midst of a digital revolution and it is generating an ocean of data. Tech giants including Google and Microsoft want to work with hospitals and health-care systems to improve lives. But should people trust them with their medical data?
La Linea, Europe’s Narco City
La Linea is a Spanish coastal city built on the drug trade. Smugglers and policemen often come from the same street. Off the Grid met people on both sides of the divide.
The School Shooting That Austin Forgot
John Ray barely remembered the details of that day—May 18, 1978—when a friend at his Austin junior high school walked into class and, in front of Ray and twenty other eighth graders, shot and killed their teacher, Wilbur “Rod” Grayson. Ray and his classmates still wonder: What really happened?
Silicon Valley’s #MeToo Moment Didn’t Change Anything
Despite tech’s reckoning with equality over the past few years, the industry’s storied history of inequality carries on. A small sampling: Only 11% of executive positions in Silicon Valley are held by women, and women make up only 9% of partners at the top 100 venture capital firms.
Nine Trillion Dollars: Global Trade Hi-Jacked By Criminals
Global Financial Integrity (GFI) analysts have identified a global trade ‘value gap’ of $8.8 trillion between what states declare as the value of trades with other countries – and what their trade partners declare for the same deals.
How Technology Is Hijacking Your Mind
I spent the last three years as a Design Ethicist at Google caring about how to design things in a way that defends a billion people’s minds from getting hijacked. When using technology, we often focus optimistically on all the things it does for us. But I want to show you where it might do the opposite.
Inside A Pro-Trump YouTube Disinformation Network That Spans Vietnam To Bosnia
YouTube removed at least 20 channels posting false or divisive content to generate ad dollars. The channels used voice-over actors to read scripts. A sampling of recent clips included: “BREAKING: Trump Just Made One Bold Move – Obama Must Scream”; and “They Did It! – Supreme Court Ends It For Dems.”
The Collapsing Crime Rates Of The ’90s Might Have Been Driven By Cellphones
It’s practically an American pastime to blame cellphones for all sorts of societal problems, from distracted parents to faltering democracies. But the devices might have also delivered a social silver lining: a de-escalation of the gang turf wars that tore up cities in the 1980s.
MDMA Researcher Is Fixing The Bad Science That Sent Him To Prison
As a teenager, Christopher Medina-Kirchner went to prison for selling ecstasy, but now his MDMA research is debunking the bad science that got him there. He’s also creating a pipeline to help other formerly incarcerated people transition into scientific research.
VW Car2X: Networked Driving Comes To Real Life
Volkswagen Car2X technology warns the driver of problems such as roadside breakdowns, the end of a traffic jam or the location of an accident. But also emergency braking situations: if a driver slams on the brakes, other vehicles are informed of sudden braking maneuvers by other traffic participants.
Google And Amazon Are Now In The Oil Business
Google, Microsoft, and Amazon have been very vocal about their efforts to reduce the world’s dependence on fossil fuels. But as The Wall Street Journal has reported, these same companies are currently teaming up with fossil fuel industry to help them squeeze as much oil and gas out of the ground as possible.
Murder at Sutton Place: The True Story Of Joey Comunale’s Death
After the surrogate son—and alleged lover—of New York’s “jeweler to the stars” was involved in a brutal killing, tabloid drama engulfed a swath of the city’s rich and powerful. But what really happened the night of Joey Comunale’s murder?