The Flimsy Veneer of Gigantic Advertisements

The Flimsy Veneer of Gigantic Advertisements

Times Square wouldn’t be Times Square without all the flashy billboards and blinking signage, but if you’re the type who’d rather see it without them, you’re not alone. Photographer Theo Derksen is also peeved by commercial displays and how they’ve overrun the builtscape, a subject he brilliantly documents in Disneyfication.The book depicts the myriad glitzy,…

Why Creating a Covid-19 Vaccine Is Taking So Long

Why Creating a Covid-19 Vaccine Is Taking So Long

The race is on for a Covid-19 vaccine, but the pace is less hare and more tortoise. And necessarily so: Developing a vaccine that’s both effective and safe is grueling, methodical work.“When experts optimistically say that they expect a Covid-19 vaccine by the end of 2020, they’re talking about an emergency use authorized vaccine, not…

This Lab ‘Cooks’ With AI to Make New Materials

This Lab ‘Cooks’ With AI to Make New Materials

At the University of Toronto, Ted Sargent runs a test kitchen of sorts. His team, composed of researchers and students, develops recipes, measures and mixes ingredients carefully, and then evaluates the aftermath. The concoctions mostly—if not always—turn out to be inedible. Fortunately, though, flavor is not the point. They’re not making food. Sargent’s team cooks…

Let’s Rebuild the Broken Meat Industry—Without Animals

Let’s Rebuild the Broken Meat Industry—Without Animals

The Covid-19 pandemic has exposed the underlying flaws in many of America’s most iconic industries. In times of stability and abundance, we have staked our national identity on our ability to transform cottage goods into global behemoths, democratizing access to all the luxuries money can buy. Lurking just below the surface are fragilities that this…

Lenovo Duet Chromebook Review: The Right Notes

Lenovo Duet Chromebook Review: The Right Notes

The vast majority of laptops that cross my desk are dull pieces of plastic and metal, but every now and then I get to test a machine that feels genuinely fun, innovative, and exciting. Lenovo’s Duet Chromebook is exactly that. The fact it’s relatively cheap to boot only adds to the appeal.The Duet isn’t right…

This AI Maestro Wants to Serenade You

This AI Maestro Wants to Serenade You

Philip Sheppard has recorded solo cello albums, composed more than 60 soundtracks, and adapted 206 national anthems for Olympic Games medal ceremonies. He knows every corner of the famed Abbey Road Studios. His work is the process of creating music, but sometimes he just wants to listen, preferably while walking in the woods. During one…

A Reading List for Kids on Their Very Long Summer Break

A Reading List for Kids on Their Very Long Summer Break

So your normal, too-short summer vacation has suddenly become a hyper-extended, undifferentiated snake-dragon thing. You have a lot of time to read. (And play Minecraft yes, but also to read.)Closed stores are no excuse, either! Apps like Libby and Overdrive let you borrow almost anything, including some of the newest books and audiobooks, and have…