Made by humans on Earth. Since 2003.
A Tiki statue in a Tiki bar


The imaginary Polynesian culture

You'd probably recognize a Tiki bar if you walked into one, but what is Tiki exactly? This faux Polynesian culture (along with the fruity drinks) is a pure American invention.
New Year's Eve in Times Square

The Experience of Things

An editorial aside

You can learn a lot by reading books, watching TV, or talking to other people. But there's another kind of knowing you can get only from having an experience yourself.
A Tundra Buggy comes upon a polar bear

Churchill, Manitoba

Polar bear capital of the world

A tiny town in northern Manitoba is accessible only by rail or air, but it still manages to draw more tourists each year than it can handle. The big draw? Polar bears, which you can observe from the comfort of a huge, heated Tundra Buggy.
The Little Girl Giant, from "Royal de Luxe" (on parade at Trafalgar Square in London, in May 2006)

The Giants of Royal de Luxe

Taking storytelling to new heights

A French theater group put on a series of traveling shows featuring the world's largest marionettes, which acted amazingly lifelike despite being suspended from cranes by ropes.
Principality of Sealand


Starting your own country

It sounds like a dream come true: starting a tiny country of your own. Quite a few people have tried, but the results have been less than spectacular. The biggest trick: getting other countries to recognize your new nation.
Shipping containers as apartment buildings for students, Le Havre (France, Normandy)

Shipping Container Architecture

Ship-shape design

The ubiquitous steel shipping containers that move goods all over the world by ship, rail, and tractor trailer are increasingly being recycled into low-cost yet sturdy housing.
Tulips at an Amsterdam flower market


The quest for the perfect tulip

The rise and fall of the market for tulips in the Netherlands in the 17th century is often told as a cautionary tale of greed and misfortune. But there is more to the story than the popular view of the tulip craze as an irrational, frenzied pursuit.
A De'Longhi Superautomatic Coffee Machine

Superautomatic Coffee Machines

The lazy way to make a perfect cup of coffee

High-end coffee machines do everything with the single press of a button: grind the beans, tamp them down, custom-brew coffee to your specifications, and eject the used grounds into a holding bin. Great coffee, effortlessly, for a price.
Illustration of a cochlear implant

Cochlear Implants

The sound and the fury

With an external microphone and processing circuitry and tiny electrodes implanted into the cochlea, some deaf people can regain partial hearing. But is this a cure or an assault on entire culture?
An old clock

Quantized Time

Split-second thinking

Is there such a thing as an instant of time, a moment so short that it cannot be subdivided any further, or is time continuous? Some scientific theories say yes, some say no, and other say probably, but it doesn't make any practical difference.

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Take Control of Your Digital Photos cover
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