The Marina Bay street circuit is illuminated at dusk after a downpour in Singapore September 11, 2014. The Singapore Formula One Grand Prix night race will take place on September 21, 2014. Picture taken with a fish-eye lens. REUTERS/Edgar Su (SINGAPORE - Tags: SPORT MOTORSPORT CITYSCAPE) - RTR45TEJ

Will Robocars Kick Humans Off City Streets?

Self-driving cars could encourage policies that end public access to America’s roads.

Whenever people go from one place to another, they don’t think much about the roads and sidewalks that pass beneath them. But this infrastructure, known as the public right-of-way, doesn’t work by magic. It is managed and regulated by specific laws. People don’t own the roads they travel on, but streets and sidewalks provide an easement—a right of use or… read more

Actors Suzanne Callaghan (L) Mahon Kelly and Jim Corcoran (R) perform a 'Ulyses' chapter to celebrate Bloomsday in Dublin's city centre, June 16. Thousands of Dubliners turned out to celebrate the city's most famous author on 'Bloomsday' named after Leopold Bloom, the central character of James Joyce's 1922 novel "Ulysses", which centres on the single day, June 16 of 1904 in Dublin.



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Ulysses and the Lie of Technological Progress

How a broken Twitter adaption of James Joyce’s novel reveals the secret of Bloomsday

Today is Bloomsday, a folk holiday adopted to celebrate the life and work of the Irish writer James Joyce, in particular his 1922 novel Ulysses. The name derives from the book’s protagonist, Leopold Bloom, one of the Dubliners the book follows through the day of June 16, 1904. First celebrated mere years after the novel’s publication, Bloomsday festivities have been… read more

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Daniel Tiger is Secretly Teaching Kids to Love Uber

The Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood Trolley introduced a generation to public transit. Now it’s gone off the rails.

As a kid growing up in a car-centric American city, my first introduction to public transit came from Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. Fred Rogers’ bright-red Trolley conveyed me and all my fellow television neighbors from the rug in front of the living room console television to the Neighborhood of Make-Believe. It was just a model train, but even as a very… read more

Republican U.S. presidential candidate Donald Trump arrives for a rally with supporters in Fresno, California, U.S. May 27, 2016.  REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst - RTX2EJCT

I’m Retweeting Her

What a Twitter fight between Clinton and Trump says about politics and politicking on the internet.

There’s politics, and there’s politicking. Politics relates to the process of governing and making policy. Politicking refers to the tactics needed to acquire or retain the power of politics itself. Politics is an esteemed term, while politicking is usually used in a derogatory way. And the two exist in tension. Today, Hillary Clinton posted a good tweet, responding to Donald… read more

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Elegy for the Capital-I Internet

It’s silly to capitalize it, but doing so gave the global network a needed sense of awe and terror

We’ve long stopped referring to the Internet as “the information superhighway,” but there was a reason for the metaphor. Back in the 1990s, when the phrase gained popularity, it worked because a highway is fast, and online life offered access to information—and later shopping, services, and socialization—at previously unthinkable levels of speed and convenience. The irony of “information superhighway” as… read more

Peter Thiel, partner of Founders Fund, takes part in a panel discussion titled "When Past Performance Is a Guide: Using History to Make Sense of the Post-Crisis World" at the Milken Institute Global Conference in Beverly Hills, California May 1, 2013. REUTERS/Gus Ruelas  (UNITED STATES - Tags: BUSINESS) - RTXZ6O1

Peter Thiel vs. Gawker: The Flame War’s Logical Conclusion

What the billionaire’s financing of lawsuits against the gossip rag says about Internet culture

What could be stranger than a former professional wrestler winning an eight-figure jury award in a lawsuit against an online gossip site that distributed his sex tape? If the lawsuit also had been secretly funded by a technology billionaire. It sounds like something out of a pulpy television script, but, nope, apparently it’s the sort of thing that really happens… read more

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The Future of Writing Looks Like the Past

The Freewrite, a “smart typewriter,” wants to liberate writers from their computers.

These days, I write with my fingertips. We all do. And so, anything that changes that sensation stands out. Today, instead of chiclet keys on an Apple laptop, I am clacking at the white, mechanical keys of the Freewrite, a “smart typewriter” made by Astrohaus. It’s the latest and most extreme entry in the distraction-free writing wars. The idea: by… read more

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When Cars Fly

How driverless vehicles could change meetings, manufacturing, safety, and more

The automobile has long been a symbol of everything great and everything terrible about America. On the one hand: freedom, individualism, power, speed. The taming of millions of miles of varied wildernesses through roads, then highways, then interstates. The capacity of American industry—Pittsburgh’s steel, Akron’s rubber, Detroit’s factories. But on the other hand: gas-guzzling SUVs. Traffic and sprawl. The abandonment of… read more

Facebook's logo is seen through a magnifier in front of a displayed PC motherboard, in this illustration taken April 11, 2016. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic/Illustration - RTX29IF2

Go Tweak Yourself, Facebook

Talking about social-network service changes as mysterious changes to algorithms turns software companies into false idols.

Last week Facebook “tweaked its algorithm” again. The latest update promises to show users links that people spend more time reading, which might be a good thing for media outlets like this one. Another update, this one purely hypothetical, concerns the company’s hypothetical ability to affect the outcome of elections by altering its news feed—to prevent a President Trump, for… read more

A Tesla Motors mass-market Model 3 electric car is seen in this handout picture from Tesla Motors on March 31, 2016. REUTERS/Tesla Motors/Handout via ReutersATTENTION EDITORS - THIS PICTURE WAS PROVIDED BY A THIRD PARTY. REUTERS IS UNABLE TO INDEPENDENTLY VERIFY THE AUTHENTICITY, CONTENT, LOCATION OR DATE OF THIS IMAGE. IT IS DISTRIBUTED EXACTLY AS RECEIVED BY REUTERS, AS A SERVICE TO CLIENTS. FOR EDITORIAL USE ONLY. NOT FOR SALE FOR MARKETING OR ADVERTISING CAMPAIGNS. EDITORIAL USE ONLY. - RTSD3DN

The Tesla Model 3 Is Still a Rich Person’s Car

And that’s all it may ever be.

Tesla calls the Model 3, which the company revealed last week, “our most affordable car yet.” At a starting price of $35,000, they’re not wrong, but affordability is relative. In their eagerness to see Elon Musk’s electric car empire overthrow the old, traditional combustion engine, Tesla supporters might overlook how the Model 3 makes the auto market more uncomfortable for… read more