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Are Facebook and Internet Addictions Affecting Our Minds?

We recently learned that the teenage brain may develop through a unique pathway, which gives some parents reassurance that there may be some method to the seeming madness. But we also hear a lot of chatter about Internet addiction. If you or a loved one thinks there may be a problem, there is even an…

Is it Green to be Green?

In more than a decade of writing about green living, one of the most common complaints I hear about it is that it costs more up front. I have learned that this is a deceptive and surprisingly complicated query, with no one answer. Sure, shopping at Whole Foods (aka Whole Paycheck) can cost more than…

The DNA of a Successful Book

As a book author, I’m very interested in what makes a title successful. The other day I was listening to a podcast of the NPR show On the Media, and they had a publishing expert on talking about how new digital tools like the Kindle are providing new data sets on reader behavior. Publishers can…

Malcolm Gladwell’s 10,000-Hour Rule Visualized: Practice Makes Perfect

One of the most interesting parts of Malcolm Gladwell’s fantastic book Outliers is his discussion of the “10,000-hour rule,” which posits that it takes about 10,000 hours of dedicated practice to truly master a skill, be it playing the violin, computer programming, or skateboarding. Gladwell covers several tantalizing examples, from the Beatles to Bill Gates,…

Teens, Texting, and Driving by the Numbers

Last September, I attended a live production of the NPR show Talk of the Nation, which featured National Geographic magazine writer David Dobbs and several experts on the developing teenage brain. Dobbs’ article “Beautiful Brains” featured recent science that probes deep into young minds and shattered some of the pervading myths about them in our…

10 Green Ways to Improve Our Cities

We’ve been writing a lot recently about how cities can transform themselves by going greener, from rooftop gardens, to buildings made of shipping containers, or even making entire floating cities. (Learn more at our new innovation hub.) At the recent Aspen Environment Forum, Rohit Aggarwala said most major world cities have plans to address climate change…

Gambling’s Storied History in the U.S.

Gambling is perhaps as old as humankind, and it has a long and storied history in the U.S. Although legal gambling is becoming increasingly popular, it is not without controversies, including addiction and association with crime and other social problems. As this infographic by Nowsourcing shows, more and more states have been legalizing some forms…

Great Depression vs. Great Recession

The economy has been at the top of mind for some time across much of the world. We have learned that the global economy is increasingly inter-related, and although the Great Recession may have officially ended a few years ago, its effects are very much still being felt. A lot of people have drawn parallels…

Does This Look Infected? Medical Procedures Then and Now

By Kevin Fletcher So many things have changed in medicine over the past few centuries. Procedures that used to take hours of grueling, grotesque labor can now be done in just a matter of minutes and are dramatically less painful or almost completely pain free. In simpler times, when bullets had to be extracted and…

Body Hacks for a Longer Life

If Ray Kurzweil is right, we may all soon be living forever in our new digital bodies. If you want to make it to see the Singularity, you’re going to want to live as long as possible. Perhaps these hacks can give you a leg up.   Source: BestHealthDegrees.com

The World’s Biggest Heists

Planning the heist of the century? Before you get your grappling hooks and black turtlenecks out, you may want to take a look at this infographic. There have been some massive robberies in the past, and anything you may have planned now will likely pale in comparison. Having in mind to make off with millions…

The Evolution of Solar Technology

(View infographic larger.) By Priyeshu Garg In a world where most energy production comes from non-renewable resources, people are trying to find efficient and price-effective ways to use renewable energy. One of the great leaps in renewable technology has been the solar panel, which is composed of several solar cells that convert light into electricity.…

Magnifying the Universe [Infographic]

Ever seen that Simpsons intro when the “camera” zooms out from Springfield, all the way past the Earth, the Solar System, Milky Way, and beyond, only to depict the Universe as a tiny marble in yet another dimension? This beautifully produced infographic from Number Sleuth lets you have that experience from the comfort of your…

How We’re Endangering Animals [Infographic]

Wildlife face many threats around the world, from poaching to habitat loss. Global climate change also threatens to destabilize already stressed ecosystems. This infographic takes a quick look at some of the biggest threats, as well as some of the better known species under assault. Unfortunately, for every charismatic animal listed — polar bears, penguins,…

How Beer Saved the World

It’s almost St. Patrick’s Day, so what better time to reflect on beer? (Even if you prefer your beer in space.) Beer, like all alcohol, has often been controversial, and it’s unquestionable that it has resulted in great loss of life. But it’s also unquestionable that beer has had a profound impact on the history…