Barbed Wire's Dark, Deadly History

In the mid 1800s, not many (non-native) Americans had ever been west of the Mississippi. When Frederick Law Olmstead visited the west in the 1850s, he remarked that the plains looked like a sea of grasses that moved "in swells after a great storm." Massive herds of buffalo wandered the plains. Cowboys shepherded… » 3/25/15 2:10pm 3/25/15 2:10pm

The AI Revolution: How Far Away Are Our Robot Overlords?

Imagine taking a time machine back to 1750—a time when the world was in a permanent power outage, long-distance communication meant either yelling loudly or firing a cannon in the air, and all transportation ran on hay. When you get there, you retrieve a dude, bring him to 2015, and then walk him around and watch… » 2/09/15 2:00pm 2/09/15 2:00pm

Before the Hashtag, There Was the Octothorpe

If you want to follow conversation threads relating to this show on social media—whether Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram, Tumblr—you know to look for the hashtag: #99pi. In our current digital age, the hashtag identifies movements, events, happenings, brands—topics of all kinds. The "#" didn't always have this… » 12/18/14 1:10pm 12/18/14 1:10pm

10 Bizarre Buildings and Their Fascinating Histories

Iconic buildings such as the Flatiron Building and the Empire State Building are revered for their historical and cultural significance. However, few people are aware of the equally important structures scattered around the world—structures that have survived time, nature, and the wrecking ball. » 12/09/14 9:00am 12/09/14 9:00am

The Factories That Churn Out America's Most Iconic Trophies

There's a little trophy shop called Aardvark Laser Engraving down the street from our office in Oakland. It's small but bustling, and its windows are stuffed to the brim with awards made of all kinds of materials and in any shape you can imagine: chalices, orbs, golfers, gavels, apples, and plaques. Plenty of plaques.… » 12/04/14 3:00pm 12/04/14 3:00pm

The Port Authority Bus Terminal: Myth, Mystery, Mess

For many coming to New York City, the available entry is the Port Authority Bus Terminal (PABT). However, if a traveler seeks the charm of a grand entrance, they will be greatly disappointed. The PABT is considered, colloquially, to be a hall of unfathomable nightmares. As one Yelp! reviewer put it: » 12/04/14 1:28pm 12/04/14 1:28pm