The Lie That Helped Build Nintendo
In 1981, a young Swede called Owe Bergsten strolled through Singapore to pass the time before his flight home. Passing a camera shop, he spotted a two-button LCD game called ‘Fire RC-04’ in the window. The story of a man, a lie, a video game handheld, and a business empire.
Beyond The Growth Gospel
The Hotel Belvédère du Rayon Vert symbolizes the very empire these adherents of “degrowth,” as the movement is known, wish to overthrow: consumption, wealth, inequality, travel, and cement, the whole modern industrial condition.
Inside London’s £18BN New Railway
Join Fred Mills inside London’s new Tottenham Court Road (TCR) station – part of the £18BN Elizabeth Line that is being constructed by Crossrail beneath the UK’s capital.
How Global Trade Runs On U.S. Dollars
Nearly 90% of international transactions in 2019 were in U.S. dollars, giving the U.S. extraordinary power over nearly every entity that imports or exports anything anywhere. Here’s how the global economy runs on the U.S. dollar — and why some countries are trying to chip away at its dominance.
That Wonderful Summer
On July 4, 1988, FIFA awarded the 1994 World Cup to the United States. At the time, there was no top-flight professional league in the U.S., and it had been 38 years since the country had participated in a World Cup. As a condition for awarding the tournament, FIFA required the United States to create a new professional league.
Should We Abolish Private Schools?
A disproportionate number of people who occupy the top jobs across the UK – from the prime minister and leading politicians to judges and entertainers – were privately educated. Campaigners who think this situation has gone on too long are asking why we have private schools and whether it is time to get rid of them.
The Wealth Detective Who Finds The Hidden Money Of The Super Rich
Thirty-two-year-old French economist Gabriel Zucman scours spreadsheets to find secret offshore accounts. The minimum amount Zucman calculated the wealthy stash in offshore accounts: $7.6 trillion.
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.
How Cities Became Childless
American cities are getting more expensive, and families are being pushed out. Welcome to the future of urban living, where young people have to make a choice: money or babies?
Inside X, Google’s Top-Secret Moonshot Factory
Within Alphabet, Google’s parent company, it is grouped alongside Deepmind in “Other Bets”, although in that metaphor, X is more like the gambler. Its stated aim is to pursue what it calls “moonshots” – to try to solve humanity’s great problems by inventing radical new technologies.
Drought And Floods — The Climate Exodus
More people around the world are fleeing from climate change than from war. If human-induced climate change continues at the current rate, the World Bank warns that by 2050 there could be as many as 180 million climate refugees.
The Economic Failure Of Venezuela
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.
How Online Shopping Makes Suckers Of Us All
Will you pay more for those shoes before 7 p.m.? Would the price tag be different if you lived in the suburbs? Standard prices and simple discounts are giving way to far more exotic strategies, designed to extract every last dollar from the consumer.
Uncanny Valley: Inside The Craziness That Is Silicon Valley Hiring Processes
How many square feet of pizza are eaten in the United States every year? How would you explain the internet to a medieval farmer? If you can answer those questions, you might stand a chance at getting hired at one of Silicon Valley’s most hotly tipped data-gathering startups.
Cryptoqueen: How This Woman Scammed The World, Then Vanished
Ruja Ignatova called herself the Cryptoqueen. She told people she had invented a cryptocurrency to rival Bitcoin, and persuaded them to invest billions. Then, two years ago, she disappeared. Jamie Bartlett spent months investigating how she did it and trying to figure out where she’s hiding.
The Epic Rise And Hard Fall Of New York’s Taxi King
The man known as the Taxi King arrived at his 2014 holiday party in a $384,000 Ferrari, wearing a custom Italian suit. Five years later, that man, Evgeny A. Freidman, stood in a mostly empty courtroom in Albany, N.Y., as a judge sentenced him to probation for tax fraud.
Urban Geography: Why We Live Where We Do
Rich Americans live in the suburbs; Rich Europeans live downtown. Why do cities on the two continents have different structures?
How Drug Companies Make You Buy More Medicine Than You Need
Drug companies make eyedrops too big — and you pay for the waste. The makers of cancer drugs also make vials with too much medication for many patients. The excess drugs are tossed in the trash — another reason health care costs are so high.
In 1933, Two Rebellious Women Bought A Home In Virginia’s Woods. Then The CIA Moved In.
The year was 1933, and Northern Virginia was still the countryside, even with Washington just across the Potomac. So it was the ideal retreat for Florence Thorne and Margaret Scattergood, two pioneers of the American labor movement who defied the gender expectations of their time.
How Small Business Owners Survived The Great Recession
Successful business owners employed a variety of strategies to make ends meet, from entering into strategic partnerships to significantly downsizing staff. When small business owners faced dramatic downward shifts in revenue, they had to get creative and, in some cases, make extremely difficult decisions.
Human Population Through Time
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?