Business Is Booming for America’s Survival Food King

By capitalizing on the growing unease about our unstable world, Wise Co. is expanding its business to average Americans and stores like Walmart. The logic: if you have a flashlight and first-aid kit, shouldn’t you stockpile some Mylar food pouches, too?

Published: Dec 22, 2017
Length: 12 minutes (3,167 words)

The U.S. Flooded One of Houston’s Richest Neighborhoods to Save Everyone Else

During Hurricane Harvey, the Army Corp of Engineers decided to flood Houston’s Buffalo Bayou instead of risking a dam collapse, destroying one of the city’s most affluent suburbs. This meant that Harvey’s legacy wouldn’t be death, but something just as enduring — the lawsuit.

Published: Nov 16, 2017
Length: 18 minutes (4,500 words)

The Godfather of Mexican Manufacturing Couldn’t Care Less About Donald Trump

The 45th President can try to build a wall along the US-Mexican border and renegotiate NAFTA, but nothing can contain the role Mexican manufacturing plays in the global economy, and the role Jaime Bermúdez Cuarón plays in particular.

Published: Oct 12, 2017
Length: 13 minutes (3,369 words)

Nestlé Makes Billions Bottling Water It Pays Nearly Nothing For

Why do consumers let the world’s biggest water-bottling company sell us water that’s already ours?

Published: Sep 21, 2017
Length: 14 minutes (3,597 words)

Nobody Knows What Lies Beneath New York City

Satellites can map the earth’s surface, but the world underneath cities is the last cartographic frontier. One team is mapping New York City’s subsurface infrastructure in 3-D to improve safety, streamline growth, and allow New York to lead the world to becoming a “smart city.”

Published: Aug 10, 2017
Length: 14 minutes (3,683 words)

The Hijacking of the Brillante Virtuoso

A mysterious assault. An unsolved murder. And a ship that hasn’t given up all its secrets.

Published: Jul 27, 2017
Length: 25 minutes (6,275 words)

The Mad Cheese Scientists Fighting to Save the Dairy Industry

Amid an historic glut, a secretive, government-sponsored entity is putting cheese anywhere it can stuff it.
Published: Jul 19, 2017
Length: 12 minutes (3,093 words)

These Truckers Work Alongside the Coders Trying to Eliminate Their Jobs

“We basically have people from two worlds, neither of which has ever talked to each other.” At Starsky Robotics, a driverless trucking startup in San Francisco, truck drivers and software engineers work side by side.

Published: Jun 22, 2017
Length: 13 minutes (3,391 words)

This Lawsuit Goes to 11

This Is Spinal Tap is a comedy classic, but its creators made practically no money from it. Robert Kolker looks at the legal battle over what Hollywood owes Harry Shearer, Rob Reiner, Michael McKean, and Christopher Guest.

Published: Apr 22, 2017
Length: 13 minutes (3,428 words)

What’s the Maker of Post-it Notes Doing in the Ankle Monitor Business? Struggling

When corrections agencies started using electronic ankle monitors to relieve overcrowded prisons, 3M capitalized on the market opportunity. Their products’ failures caused innocent people to suffer and challenged the company’s long-heald philosophy about design and innovation.

Published: Apr 6, 2017
Length: 13 minutes (3,311 words)