Welcome to this week’s edition of Reading List, Gizmodo’s weekly gathering of fascinating science and technology stories from around the internet. This week, we’ll attend an Indonesian funeral, explore the darker side of tourism, and join an expedition to the unforgiving Greenland ice sheet.
- What motivates people to visit sites of tragedy and atrocity? Whether it’s morbid curiosity, empathy, or schadenfreude, it’s fueling a multi-million dollar “dark tourism” industry. Sociologists and tourism experts are trying to understand what drives people’s interest in places known for death, violence, and sadness. [Motherboard]
- Do you remember the Sports Illustrated football phone? One unlikely moment of inspiration led to a unexpected cultural phenomenon (and sold a lot of magazines). [Rolling Stone]
- In many cultures around the world, the dead are still part of the family. Some traditions may seem morbid and taboo to Western eyes, but a closer look can teach us a lot about grief, love, and finality. [Motherboard]
- Greenland’s ice sheets are melting as the air and sea around them get warmer, and we need better models to help us understand how melting Arctic ice will impact the rest of our planet. Gathering data straight from the cold, swift waters of Greenland’s ice-melt rivers could help us understand what’s happening inside the ice sheet in much greater detail. [New York Times]
Top image: Visitors at the World Trade Center Memorial, April 2015. Malcolm Manners via Wikimedia Commons.