I recently finished Highbrow’s excellent 10-day course on inventions that changed the world.
In keeping score, half of the cited inventions quickened the sharing of information (writing, printing press, telephone, personal computer, internet). A third hastened our transportation (steam engine, automobile, airplanes). One marginalizes or maximizes physical dominance, depending on who owns more of it (gunpowder). And the last one lengthens our days (light bulb).
Interestingly, every one of these inventions involve some element of speed. The speed of a bullet. The speed of light. The speed of travel. The speed of knowledge. That’s why the world moves at an increasing rate. Our greatest inventions all involve speed.
Even this century’s greatest inventions largely involve speed. How fast you can get new or old music to your ears (iTunes, Spotify). How fast you can get answers to questions (Google). How fast you can connect with friends and family (Facebook, SMS). And how fast you can see the latest cat videos (YouTube).
Of course, many of these inventions involve size, frequency, and power. But when it comes to bigger, stronger, better, and faster—always bet on faster. It’s the future. And it’s likely what the “next big thing” will do more than others.
If I may paraphrase comedian Louis C.K., “Aviation is amazing and nobody’s happy.” That’s the argument Living in the Age of Airplanes succeeds in making. Continue reading…
Courtesy Warner Bros.
My travel column entries from last month:
Feedback if you got ’em.
Courtesy Fox Searchlight
Last month I started a travel column for Paste Magazine. Here’s what I wrote about this month:
Thanks for reading.
Lindsey and I took the kids to fabulous Mesquite, Nevada last month for spring break. The city bills itself as “The way Vegas used to be.”
With only three casinos and extremely limited food options, I’m not so sure about that. But I was charmed by the place and plan on returning soon the next time I crave a desert oasis. Here’s why. Continue reading…
Photo: Wikimedia Commons
I just started a new travel column for Paste Magazine. It’s called “Off the Grid.” You should read it.
First one up: 5 overlooked National Parks. To help you along the way, I’ll follow it up every week with all things awesome.
Thanks for reading (and for sharing if you like what you read).
Newfoundland & Labrador Tourism
An edited version of this story first appeared on USA Today
North American is known for a lot of things. Transcendent, soaring, and gaping fjords isn’t one of them. For that, most travelers understandably head to Norway, New Zealand, or Chile first—all renowned for their glacier-carved “canyons” that outlet into swallowing seas.
But the northern half of the continent has its fair share of majestic cliffs cut by frozen (instead of liquid) water, especially in parts of southern Alaska and Canada. As a bonus, they’re more proximitous than Europe’s beloved Grainger Fjord, less travelled, and still rate at least 4.5 out of 5 stars, according to average visitor reviews on Google and Tripadvisor.
Behold, the most fantastic fjords of North America: Continue reading…
I watched Nicholas Nickleby over the holidays with my soulmate.
It’s worth watching, at least according to this romantic. Charlie Hunnam’s performance was uneven—brilliant when confronting his uncle, not so much when mourning the death of his friend. But it was obvious to me after watching it: Charles Dickens is a masterful storyteller. He’s proved it many times over. As have his contemporaries, including Jane Austen.
Upon finishing the movie and while channeling the most formal English I could muster, I commented to my wife, “We gotta go to England! The source of such great storytelling deserves to be honored with our presence.”
Plus, I’m a sucker for Ferris wheels, and I hear London has a rather considerable one.
As the value of higher education continues to decline, these are some great alternatives: Start a business, travel the world, create art, make people laugh, write a book, work for a charity, master a game, master a sport. Splendid!
Starting two years ago with a trip to Arches/Dead Horse Point, Lindsey and I took an interest in exploring our own backyard (aka Utah and its neighboring states). We’ve since visited and enjoyed a handful of other nearby parks on weekend getaways with the kids and are already itching for more. Continue reading…
I have never believed in traditional retirement, the complete withdrawal from one’s occupation, business, or office near the end of one’s life. It’s a pipe dream. As millions of ex-retirees quickly realize after an uneventful year on the beach, idleness never was happiness.
But leisure and periodic breaks from work are an important part of life. When used properly, regular vacations can inspire and rejuvenate a willingness to work harder. And contrary to popular belief, you don’t have to be rich or wait until the end of your life to vacation. Here’s how: Continue reading…
Findings from an Expedia.com global survey of 4000 hoteliers confirm some embarrassing stereotypes: that Americans are loud, demanding, and have no fashion sense when traveling abroad. Take it away, Divine Caroline.
photo credit: random stranger
UPDATE: Visited in 2014. ORIGINAL STORY: I remember seeing this marvel in an early Bond movie as a young boy. Apparently, it’s the deepest lake in America. Not only that, but it’s strikingly beautiful. Any readers ever been? It’s only an 11 hour drive from my house. (Asks wife if we can go this summer.)