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The Best Articles of the Year
Bonfire of the humanities
It has long been fashionable to say that the globe is shrinking. In the wake of the telegraph, the steamship and the railway, thinkers from the late 19th century onwards often wrote of space and time being annihilated by new technologies.
The Inside Story of Oculus Rift and How Virtual Reality Became Reality
The reception that the Rift got was rapturous. “The level of immersion was unlike any other gaming experience I’ve ever had,” one site wrote. “It transforms the experience of playing a first-person videogame,” another wrote.
Tim Cook, Making Apple His Own
Tim Cook, Apple’s chief executive, was an adolescent boy in a small Alabama town in the early 1970s when he saw something he couldn’t forget. Bicycling home on a new 10-speed, he passed a large cross in flames in front of a house — one that he knew belonged to a black family.
The End Of Apps As We Know Them
The experience of our primary mobile screen being a bank of app icons that lead to independent destinations is dying. And that changes what we need to design and build. How we experience content via connected devices – laptops, phones, tablets, wearables – is undergoing a dramatic change.
What Happened to Motorola
On the 18th floor of the Merchandise Mart, in a soaring two-story space underneath a vast industrial-looking stairway, a small crowd of business types, pols, and journalists gathers.
The Secret Life of Passwords
Howard Lutnick, the chief executive of Cantor Fitzgerald, one of the world’s largest financial-services firms, still cries when he talks about it.
The internet is fucked
Here’s a simple truth: the internet has radically changed the world.
Drones and Everything After
Recently, it has been getting harder to disappear on this planet. A surveilling drone began passing over the remote forests of northeastern Nigeria earlier this year, tracking the separatist group Boko Haram, catching glimpses of hasty encampments and escapes along dirt trails.
Aliens in the valley
For months leading up to his resignation, Yishan Wong looked beaten down. Employees say he was noticeably stressed and no longer enjoying his work. One business associate who stopped by the office in October thought Yishan was just having a bad day, but the bad day never seemed to end.
Mobile Is Eating the World
There is no point in drawing a distinction between the future of technology and the future of mobile. They are the same. In other words, technology is now outgrowing the tech industry.
Ten years of Ubuntu: How Linux’s beloved newcomer became its criticized king
In October of 2004, a new Linux distro appeared on the scene with a curious name—Ubuntu. Even then there were hundreds, today if not thousands, of different Linux distros available.
The future that everyone forgot
I came across a website whose purpose was to provide a super detailed list of every handheld computing environment going back to the early 1970's. It did a great job except for one glaring omission: the first mobile platform that I helped develop.
What if Apple bought Beats not for headphones, but wearables?
Nobody knows why Apple is buying Beats, but many are taking a guess. Business reporters and financial analysts are keen to tell you about all the known pieces of Beats that kind of, sort of, probably add up to a good reason to buy a company.
Comcast’s deal with Netflix makes network neutrality obsolete
For the past two decades, the Internet has operated as an unregulated, competitive free market. Given the tendency of networked industries to lapse into monopoly—think of AT&T's 70-year hold over telephone service, for example—that's a minor miracle.
The best entrepreneurs don’t start companies, they invent categories
Starting a new company is difficult. The numbers say that 75 percent of startups fail, but that doesn’t change the fact that lots of people do it every day. Inventing a new category, however, is downright herculean.
Do We Really Need to Learn to Code?
“Learn to Code!” This imperative to program seems to be everywhere these days. Bill Gates and Mark Zuckerberg recently donated ten million dollars to Code.
Meet the new Apple
While I watched Apple's WWDC 2014 opening keynote on Monday morning, I couldn't stop thinking about the infectious mixture of fun and confidence everyone onstage seemed to be exuding. It was something new for this era of Apple, and it felt like a mirror image of the announcements being made.
How to Survive the Next Wave of Technology Extinction
Don’t mock the beleaguered Nook owner. That could have been you.
How we end up marrying the wrong people
Anyone we could marry would, of course, be a little wrong for us. It is wise to be appropriately pessimistic here. Perfection is not on the cards. Unhappiness is a constant.
Masters of Love
Science says lasting relationships come down to—you guessed it—kindness and generosity.
Multiple Lovers, Without Jealousy
When I met Jonica Hunter, Sarah Taub, and Michael Rios on a typical weekday afternoon in their tidy duplex in Northern Virginia, a very small part of me worried they might try to convert me. All three live there together, but they aren’t roommates—they’re lovers.
This Infographic Reveals the Secrets of the Happiest Couples
PSA: Valentine's Day is next week. Whether or not you celebrate the occasion, this infographic from happiness training app Happify could help you improve your romantic relationship. It sums up several important findings from studies on what makes couples happy.
Does a More Equal Marriage Mean Less Sex?
Not long ago, I was at a dinner party with several couples in their 40s, all married except for my boyfriend and me. The mood was jovial until, over dessert, one guest made an offhand joke about Internet porn.
How to Pick Your Life Partner – Part 1
And at first glance, research seems to back this up, suggesting that married people are on average happier than single people and much happier than divorced people.
How to Pick Your Life Partner – Part 2
This is Part 2. Part 1 is here. Often, the key to succeeding at something big is to break it into its tiniest pieces and focus on how to succeed at just one piece.
These 4 Things Kill Relationships
Eric Barker writes Barking Up the Wrong Tree. John Gottman can listen to a couple for 5 minutes and determine, with 91% accuracy, whether they’ll divorce.
Here's The Best Advice From A Single Guy Who Spent A Year Interviewing Couples
Nate Bagley says he was sick of hearing love stories that fell into one of two categories — scandal and divorce, and unrealistic fairytale. So he started a Kickstarter and used his life savings to tour the country and interview couples in happy, long-term relationships.
10 facts about infidelity
1. Pairbonding is a hallmark of humanity. Data from the Demographic Yearbooks of the United Nations on 97 societies between 1947 and 1992 indicate that approximately 93.1% of women and 91.8% of men marry by age 49. More recent data indicates that some 85% of Americans will eventually marry. 2.
9 Good Signs You’re in the Right Relationship
It’s not always where you are in life, but who you have by your side that matters. Far too often, we make our relationships harder than they have to be.
Lock up your wives!
In April this year, the Meredith Corporation announced that it would reduce Ladies’ Home Journal to a shadow of its former self.
6 Healthy Relationship Habits Most People Think Are Toxic
About six months ago, I wrote a post titled 6 Toxic Habits that Most People Think Are Normal. It became very successful.
The First Lesson of Marriage 101: There Are No Soul Mates
Research shows that practically every dimension of life happiness is influenced by the quality of one’s marriage, while divorce is the second most stressful life event one can ever experience.
Putin Goes to War
Vladimir Putin, the Russian President and autocrat, had a plan for the winter of 2014: to reassert his country’s power a generation after the collapse of the Soviet Union.
The Battle in Ukraine Means Everything Fascism returns to the continent it once destroyed
We easily forget how fascism works: as a bright and shining alternative to the mundane duties of everyday life, as a celebration of the obviously and totally irrational against good sense and experience.
Everything you know about Ukraine is wrong
Although I’m deep into the reporting of my next story about the Silicon Valley Techtopus, it’s hard for me not to get distracted by events in Ukraine and Russia.
Behind the Masks in Ukraine, Many Faces of Rebellion
SLOVYANSK, Ukraine — The rebel leader spread a topographic map in front of a closed grocery store here as a Ukrainian military helicopter flew past a nearby hill. Ukrainian troops had just seized positions along a river, about a mile and a half away. The commander thought they might advance.
I spent the majority of this summer at Middlebury College, studying at l’École Française. I had never been to Vermont. I have not been many places at all. I did not have an adult passport until I was 37 years old. Sometimes I regret this. And then sometimes not.
The Plot Against Public Education
Bill Gates had an idea. He was passionate about it, absolutely sure he had a winner. His idea? America’s high schools were too big. When a multibillionaire gets an idea, just about everybody leans in to listen.
Is Coding the New Literacy?
In the winter of 2011, a handful of software engineers landed in Boston just ahead of a crippling snowstorm. They were there as part of Code for America, a program that places idealistic young coders and designers in city halls across the country for a year.
Why Do Americans Stink at Math?
When Akihiko Takahashi was a junior in college in 1978, he was like most of the other students at his university in suburban Tokyo. He had a vague sense of wanting to accomplish something but no clue what that something should be.
Don't Send Your Kid to the Ivy League The nation's top colleges are turning our kids into zombies
In the spring of 2008, I did a daylong stint on the Yale admissions committee. We—that is, three admissions staff, a member of the college dean’s office, and me, the faculty representative—were going through submissions from eastern Pennsylvania.
Who Gets to Graduate?
For as long as she could remember, Vanessa Brewer had her mind set on going to college.
Finnish Education Chief: 'We Created a School System Based on Equality'
Finnish education often seems paradoxical to outside observers because it appears to break a lot of the rules we take for granted. Finnish children don’t begin school until age 7. They have more recess, shorter school hours than many U.S.
The Myth of Chinese Super Schools
Who’s Afraid of the Big Bad Dragon? Why China Has the Best (and Worst) Education System in the World Jossey-Bass, 254 pp., $26.
How A Disgraced College Chain Trapped Its Students In Poverty
Not long ago, Amber Brown, a student at Everest University, saw an article on Facebook about one of the many lawsuits against her school.
Inside the Mammoth Backlash to Common Core
ONE NIGHT LAST SEPTEMBER, a 46-year-old Veterans Administration research manager named Robert Small showed up at a public meeting with state education officials in Towson*, a Maryland suburb, with a pen, a notebook, and an ax to grind.
The New Yorker
Late one night in December, 2009, a black Chevy Tahoe in a caravan of cops and residents moved slowly through some of the most dangerous neighborhoods of Newark. In the back sat the Democratic mayor, Cory Booker, and the Republican governor-elect of New Jersey, Chris Christie.
Teacher spends two days as a student and is shocked at what she learns
Do teachers really know what students go through? To find out, one teacher followed two students for two days and was amazed at what she found.
Why Poor Schools Can’t Win at Standardized Testing
You hear a lot nowadays about the magic of big data. Getting hold of the right numbers can increase revenue, improve decision-making, or help you find a mate—or so the thinking goes. In 2009, U.S.
A New SAT Aims to Realign With Schoolwork
Saying its college admission exams do not focus enough on the important academic skills, the College Board announced on Wednesday a fundamental rethinking of the SAT, ending the longstanding penalty for guessing wrong, cutting obscure vocabulary words and making the essay optional.