The Most Extreme Railway In The World
At 430 miles long, the formidable Mauritania Railway, nicknamed the “backbone of the Sahara,” boasts some of the longest and heaviest trains in the world. Its journey begins in Zouerat, Mauritania, and runs across the searing desert to the port city of Nouadhibou, on Africa’s Atlantic coast.
The Strange Persistence Of First Languages
Czech was the only language I knew until the age of 2, when my family began a migration westward, from what was then Czechoslovakia through Austria, then Italy, settling eventually in Montreal, Canada. Along the way, a clutter of languages introduced themselves into my life.
For 40 Years, A Russian Family Was Cut Off From All Human Contact, Unaware of World War II
Six members of the Lykov family lived in the Siberian taiga for more than 40 years—utterly isolated and more than 150 miles from the nearest human settlement. In 1978, Soviet geologists prospecting in the wilds of Siberia discovered them.
“The Jigsaw”, Award-Winning Horror Short Film
The purchase of a mystery Jigsaw Puzzle from a strange and unsettling vendor leads a man to an evening of frightening consequences. “The Jigsaw” is a short horror film that won over 30 awards worldwide.
The Food Deserts Of Memphis: Inside America’s Hunger Capital
In the ‘food deserts’ of Memphis, Tennessee, dominated by fast food outlets and convenience stores, locals lack what seems a basic human right in the richer half of the city: a supermarket. With a big gap in life expectancy, are these Americans doomed to die younger than their neighbours – or can they fight for their right to nutrition?
Surprising Images From Inside North Korea
Magnum photographer Carl De Keyzer is one of very few to have been given unprecedented access to Democratic People’s Republic of North Korea.
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?
Photoprovocations By Russian Sergey Chilikov
Photography wasn’t given credence as a legitimate art form and even classic Soviet photography wasn’t included in museum exhibitions. In order to get their work seen, photographers started their own clubs, exchanging work with other clubs and organizing their own exhibitions and festivals.
The Rise And Fall Of Pan Am
Pan Am was once the largest international airline in the US. In 1970 alone, it carried 11 million passengers to 86 countries worldwide. But after 60 years of flight, decades of financial turbulence, and a devastating terrorist attack above the skies of Lockerbie, Scotland, Pan Am went bust.
Conman: The Life And Crimes Of Mark Acklom
Watch the full story of the cunning fraudster who posed as an MI6 agent to con his ex-girlfriend out of £800,000. The documentary features the first TV interview with Diana Acklom, his mother. In it, she has an extraordinary theory for her son’s prolific crimes.
How An Obsession With Home Ownership Can Ruin The Economy
Many dream of owning their own home, and thanks to huge financial incentives in the rich world many have been able to so. But government policies to encourage home ownership were a huge mistake.
Africa’s Richest Man Makes A $17 Billion Bid For Immortality
Aliko Dangote’s plan to reduce Nigeria’s dependency on fuel imports will carve out an even bigger slice of the nation’s $376 billion economy for his empire. Dangote’s future—and, as he likes to say, that of the entire continent’s economy—lies to the south on the Nigerian coast: the construction of a vast oil refinery.
Behind The Chinese Internet Wall
What is happening on the other side of the barrier? There we find people who respond to state controls with creativity and spunk. While some spend their days trawling cat videos, others create oases of subversion within the reality that they’ve been dealt.
The Italian Village That Celebrates Ugliness
Celebrating “ugliness” for the past 140 years, Piobbico has become renowned for being the world capital of ugly people. Now, its utopian idea has blossomed into a worldwide movement. Today, the so-called “World Association of Ugly People” counts more than 30,000 members across 25 global chapters.
Mining For Gold In The World’s Highest Permanent Human Settlement
High up in the Andes, La Rinconada is a place where people go to seek whatever fortune they can muster in the gold mines nestled there. Photographer James Whitlow Delano describes it as a place with no running water or sewage system, populated by about 30,000 to 50,000 inhabitants.
Japan’s Yakuza: Inside The Syndicate
With at least 50,000 members, Japan’s Yakuza gangs form one of the world’s largest criminal networks. Anton Kusters, a Belgian photographer, was allowed a rare glimpse inside a Yakuza family in early 2009. He documented the family for two years.
What Happened When A Tiny Nation Got Filthy Rich Overnight
Nauru, an island in the South Pacific, is known for its high rate of poverty and unemployment. Only a few decades ago, the island was listed among world’s richest countries while it was a major phosphate exporter but as the resources exhausted, the national systems started to fail.
Abandoned Russia: Stunning Urbex Photography By Alexei Polyakov
Outstanding abandoned places in Russia by Alexei Polyakov, a gifted self-taught photographer, and urbex explorer from Saint Petersburg. Alexei focuses mainly on abandoned, landscape, and drone photography.
The Controversy Behind Nike’s Vaporfly Running Shoe, Explained
Nike’s Vaporfly shoes have become a popular choice for both elite and amateur runners. But the shoes may soon be banned in professional competitions if World Athletics, the world governing body of track and field, decides they offer an unfair advantage.
Can Eco-Tourism Help Save The Ocean?
Indonesia’s Coral Triangle is one of the most biodiverse places on the planet, but destructive fishing practices are threatening ocean life. Meet the conservation pioneers who are reviving these waters—bringing species back from the brink of extinction.
“AlphaGo”, Artificial Intelligence Taking On The Chinese Game Go
With more board configurations than there are atoms in the universe, the ancient Chinese game of Go has long been considered a grand challenge for artificial intelligence. On March 9, 2016, the worlds of Go and artificial intelligence collided in South Korea for an extraordinary best-of-five-game competition, coined The DeepMind Challenge Match.