widdastick

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Yuval Noah Harari: ‘The idea of free information is extremely dangerous’

Yuval Noah Harari is an Israeli historian who has written two bestsellers: <i>Sapiens</i>, which examined the course of early human history, and <i>Homo Deus</i>, which speculated on where we might be heading as a post-human species. His new book, <i>21 Lessons for the 21st Century</i>, is an exploration of the …

Fake News

Dying Alone in Japan: The Industry Devoted to What’s Left Behind

Jeongja Han dumps a drawer of pens and lighters into a plastic garbage bag while her client, a recently widowed woman in her mid-50s who asked not to …

Japan

A Photographer’s Journey Through the Heart of UFO Country

From Area 51 to Roswell, a believer’s-eye view of the desert.<p>State Route 375 is a barren stretch of Nevada highway that runs near the top-secret U.S. …

Paranormal

India Train Tour

<b>Expedition Overview</b><p>Travel for five nights aboard the <i>Palace on Wheels</i>, a train that evokes the splendor of the maharajas and travels to places not easily accessible by road.<br>• In the company of a National Geographic expert, explore six UNESCO World Heritage sites, including Fatehpur Sikri and the hill …

Taj Mahal

A motorbike road trip in Bohemia, Czech Republic

Two days’ ride will take you from the ferry terminal at the Hook of Holland to the Czech Republic via Amsterdam and Hanover. Here the trip really begins. Day one is <b>Prague</b>, a capital that’s among the best for stop-and-stare architecture. Standing on the 14th-century Charles Bridge, spanning the …

European Travel

America's Oldest Dog Discovery Helps Solve Canine DNA Riddle

Science & Innovation<p>Think your pup has something in common with dogs that roamed the Americas 10,000 years ago? It may, but not in the way you think.<p>Some 10,000 years ago, in what is now Koster, Illinois, a dog died. Its adopted group of hunter gatherers carefully laid the pup to rest in its own …

Southern Gothic 'Florida' Spins Tales Of Hurricanes, Humidity And Humanity

On the acknowledgments page of her new short story collection, <i>Florida,</i> Lauren Groff thanks Florida, where she lives and which she calls the "sunniest and strangest of states."<p>Strange this collection certainly is, but sunny? Not so much. These are Southern Gothic-inflected tales of hurricanes, …

2,300-year-old Chinese philosophy shows why we should all try to be a bit of mess

Recently, I started hanging out with a group of friends who seem intimidatingly on top of things. They respond to their emails—even non-urgent ones—politely and punctually, they freeze leftovers in neatly labeled Tupperware that they never forget about, and they sort their mail into orderly files, …

Taoism

Your Best Ideas for Dealing With Minnesota’s Rogue Bog

Atlas Obscura readers offer creative solutions to a floating menace.<p>In May, Randy Tesdahl, of the American Legion in Minnesota, is hoping to chain …

Scott Pruitt’s New Rule Could Completely Transform the EPA

It would not only undermine 30 years of clean-air regulations, but radically restrict what science the agency is allowed to use.<p>In one sweeping move, the Trump administration may soon not only destabilize the last three decades of clean air and water rules, but also completely overhaul how the …

Scott Pruitt

The 15 Best 'Dear Sugar' Columns To Read When You Need A Dose Of Compassion & Inspiration

Everyone has their own road to Cheryl Strayed. I first read <i>Tiny Beautiful Things,</i> a collection of "Dear Sugar" columns, when a friend sent me a copy …

I'm British, and I experienced the biggest culture shock when I started working in the US

America. The land of the free and home of the brave. Where your rights include life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness — except if your pursuit of happiness takes you away from your desk for a few days.<p>When it comes to paid time off, Americans are dealt a pretty unfair hand.<p>Two years ago, I …

Culture Shock

Ten Ways to Use Leftover Pickle Juice

When the cukes, okra, or jalapeños are gone, the culinary creativity is just getting started<p>Big <i>dill</i> news from the fast-food world: Sonic Drive-In will debut a pickle slushie in June. Regardless of whether you’re gleeful or gagging in anticipation, it does beg the question: What else can Southerners …

A Cultural Leap at the Dawn of Humanity

New finds from Kenya suggest that humans used long-distance trade networks, sophisticated tools, and symbolic pigments right from the dawn of our species.<p>When Rick Potts started digging at Olorgesailie, the now-dry basin of an ancient Kenyan lake, he figured that it would take three years to find …

New Evidence Fuels Debate over the Origin of Modern Languages

Five thousand years ago nomadic horseback riders from the Ukrainian steppe charged through Europe and parts of Asia. They brought with them a …

A Race Against Time to Excavate an Ancient African Civilization

Archaeologists in Nubia are struggling against erosion, desertification, and government plans to develop the land.<p>In 1905, British archaeologists descended on a sliver of eastern Africa, aiming to uncover and extract artifacts from 3,000-year-old temples. They left mostly with photographs, …

Keeping A Close Eye: Dogs, Social Referencing, And Evolution

When humans talk to each other or walk alongside each other, we tend to match each other's subtle movements.<p>Called interpersonal movement synchrony in the science literature and mirroring in the popular media, it's an often-unconscious process during which we match our gestures and pace to that of …

Here, at last, is a 15-course meal to eat while marathoning the Lord Of The Rings trilogy

If the idea of watching all three <i>The Lord of the Rings</i> movies back-to-back is dangerously indulgent, watching all three <i>extended editions</i> of the movie …

Sausages

Rick Steves Gets Uncomfortable In 'Travel As A Political Act'

In any given episode of <i>Rick Steves' Europe,</i> the world's most unassuming man smiles his way through stunning cities. It's a deeply comforting formula. We admire skylines and busy streets; Steves putters around historical monuments; he nods along as locals explain sausage or glassblowing; he signs …

Get Schooled in the No-Nonsense Art of Survival

Before she climbed onto her snowmobile and drove away, leaving us to the ice, Sarah McNair-Landry had a few parting words. “Don’t burn the tent down,” she said, hugging all of us hard. “Don’t lose each other.”<p>She pulled away and headed to her machine. Soon its red tail light receded in the …

Why Silicon Valley billionaires are prepping for the apocalypse in New Zealand

How an extreme libertarian tract predicting the collapse of liberal democracies – written by Jacob Rees-Mogg’s father – inspired the likes of Peter Thiel to buy up property across the Pacific<p>If you’re interested in the end of the world, you’re interested in New Zealand. If you’re interested in how …

Silicon Valley

'How To Think Like An Anthropologist' — And Why You Should Want To

Civilization originated in the Fertile Crescent region, including parts of modern-day Iraq, Syria, Lebanon, Jordan, Israel and Egypt. That's the lesson most of us learned in school.<p>In it, <i>civilization</i> is used in a highly positive way to refer to the rise of city-states and the development of writing …

Anthropology

9 Essential Anime Movies That Aren’t Made by Studio Ghibli

Everyone knows that Studio Ghibli is basically the Disney of anime—universally beloved by viewers of all ages, with exquisitely crafted tales of …

Anime

27 underrated US destinations everyone should visit in their lifetime

Skull Cult at Göbekli Tepe

<b>Göbekli Tepe is</b> one of the world’s most significant, yet mysterious, archaeological sites. Between the tenth and eighth millennia B.C., people there …

15 Skills Every Adventurer Needs

Adventure<p>Use these essential abilities to slay your next big trip.<p>If you’re well prepared for adventure and can find the humor in things not going according to plan, you’ll never stop exploring. To understand just what will get you to that place, we spoke with endurance athletes, gear gurus, and …

The Meaning of Buddhism

Fundamental principles of the Theravada doctrine<p>The teaching founded by the Buddha is known, in English, as Buddhism. It may be asked, who is the Buddha? A Buddha is one who has attained Bodhi; and by Bodhi is meant wisdom, an ideal state of intellectual and ethical perfection which can be achieved …

Trump Is Vandalizing Our Wild Heritage

America’s wild places survive by the grace of a human promise. For more than 150 years, it has been an article of collective faith and national pride that once we protect a wild place, it is to be safeguarded for all time.<p>But in the coming days, President Trump will try to shatter that promise.<p>The …

Forests

15 holiday destinations you need to visit in 2018

The experts share their top tips

Are These the Oldest Images of Dogs?

Cave art discovered in Saudi Arabia dates back thousands of years and possibly shows hunters leading dogs on leashes.<p>In northwestern Saudi Arabia, a hunter surrounded by a pack of dogs threads an arrow, props it up against the string of his bow, and pulls it back to kill a wild animal roaming …