A New Glimpse Into the Gigantic Construction Project Hidden Below NYC

What do you want to be when you grow up? A baseball player? A doctor? A blogger (LOL)? How about a badass who carves caves through the Earth to improve the lives of millions in America's greatest city? That sounds pretty heroic. And right now, hundreds of hard hat-wearing workers are tackling that grand task » 12/18/14 2:53pm 12/18/14 2:53pm

Protests, Slums, Bass Pro Shops: What's Ruining Our Cities This Week

Protesters are shutting down freeways, bridges, and tunnels across the U.S. The country's largest shantytown is being dismantled in the heart of Silicon Valley. And a proposal from a famous outdoor retailer could threaten Memphis's strangest landmark. It's What's Ruining Our Cities this week. » 12/07/14 3:00pm 12/07/14 3:00pm

Highway sound barriers were first proposed to keep movie studios quiet

Los Angeles is widely considered to be the home of the freeway. It's also considered to be the home of the film industry. A fascinating story from Nate Berg over at Re-Form chronicles the way that two emerging forces which would come to define LA ended up making the sound of our ever-noisier roadways (somewhat) more… » 12/03/14 4:16pm 12/03/14 4:16pm

How Facebook Is Hacking Together a Better Data Center 

Data centers are boring. They have to be; these are spaces of control, consistency, security. You wouldn't expect to find much creativity inside the plain facades of these highly-regulated structures—much less hacked-together experiments involving robotic Blu-ray storage systems and thousands of Mac Minis.
» 12/03/14 1:20pm 12/03/14 1:20pm

Subway Etiquette Posters From 1970s Japan Are Just as Relevant Today

Don't smoke in the train station. Don't spit your gum on the floor. And please, god, don't splay your legs out like no one else is around you. These sound like basic rules of today's public transit, but they're actually messages that graced the walls of Tokyo's subway forty years ago. » 11/27/14 9:00am 11/27/14 9:00am

What's Your Worst Holiday Travel Horror Story?

We all have one of those holiday travel stories. That time you got to the airport and realized you forgot to click the buy button on the ticketing site. That time you stepped onto the train platform and the zipper on your suitcase broke sending all of your sweaters onto the tracks. That time you got on a bus and your… » 11/25/14 6:20pm 11/25/14 6:20pm

1 Out of Every 9 Bridges in the US Is Structurally Deficient

There are about 630,000 bridges in the United States, ranging from impressive new structural creations like Margaret Hunt Hill bridge in Dallas to deteriorating slabs of concrete in desperate need repair. It's that last growing group of bridges, ports, and highways that represent the slowing decaying infrastructure… » 11/25/14 2:32pm 11/25/14 2:32pm

The World's First Solar Road Is a Bike Path in the Netherlands

There are only so many roofs in the world, so the Dutch are getting creative about where to put their solar panels. SolaRoad is exactly what it sounds like—solar panels that pull double duty as road surface and electricity generator. And this being the Netherlands, they of course made a solar road for bikes. » 11/05/14 1:54pm 11/05/14 1:54pm

This Algae Farm Eats Pollution From the Highway Below It

A highway overpass is the last place most of us would think to install a farm. But algae, that wonderful little ecological miracle, is different. Since it consumes sunlight and CO2 and spits out oxygen, places with high emissions are actually the perfect growing area. Which is why this overpass in Switzerland has its… » 10/31/14 10:51am 10/31/14 10:51am

Why Cybersecurity Threats Are About to Get Much, Much Worse

Let me state the obvious just to get it out of the way: our nation's cybersecurity sucks and everybody knows it. The president knows it. The Pentagon knows it. And, worst of all, the hackers know it, too. That's why I'm so alarmed by a new Pew Internet survey that says we'll likely get hit with a deadly cyberattack by… » 10/30/14 3:34pm 10/30/14 3:34pm

Boston's Thinking of Building Canals Like Venice Because Climate Change

Imagine taking a scenic gondola tour through Boston's historic Back Bay as Red Sox fans saunter towards Fenway over arched bridges. Not far away, the Charles River Basin is padded by wetlands that soak up the rising sea water. This surreal scene, a sort of Venice in New England, could be the reality in a few years. » 10/28/14 5:23pm 10/28/14 5:23pm

Philadelphia's Newest Park Is Built on Top of a Sewage Overflow Tank

Venice Island, which officially opened this month in Philadelphia, has all the amenities you might expect from a nice city park—gardens, basketball court, amphitheater—but also something unexpected: a 4 million gallon sewage overflow tank. And you know what? A park built on top of the sewer is a very good thing. » 10/17/14 3:56pm 10/17/14 3:56pm