“With the exception of cricketing victories, India has a terrible sporting record. It has the lowest number of Olympic medals per head of any nation, and has only ever won one gold in an individual sport, the men’s ten-metre air rifle. In recent years this has begun to change, partly owing to the changing role of women.”
The Economist reports on how refugees prize mobile phone connection — even over food. Phones are their primary way to stay connected with family at home as they enter “informational no-man’s land,” not knowing who to trust, and where to go. Phones help them stay motivated with photos of family and successful migrants, and offer a means to contact smugglers to help them with their journey.
Is the ancient Scandinavian tradition of reindeer herding ending? Changes in climate and economics are rapidly changing the industry.
The Economist explores the origins and evolution of Tintin.
The printing of parts and products has the potential to transform manufacturing because it lowers the costs and risks. No longer does a producer have to make thousands, or hundreds of thousands, of items to recover his fixed costs. In a world where economies of scale do not matter any more, mass-manufacturing identical items may not be necessary or appropriate, especially as 3D printing allows for a great deal of customisation. Indeed, in the future some see consumers downloading products as they do digital music and printing them out at home, or at a local 3D production centre, having tweaked the designs to their own tastes. That is probably a faraway dream. Nevertheless, a new industrial revolution may be on the way.
It has become a symbol of conformity. “Suit” was the chosen insult of hippies to describe a dull establishment man. The garment has been ostentatiously rejected by Silicon Valley titans like Steve Jobs of Apple, Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook and Sergey Brin of Google. Yet the business suit has an exciting and mysterious history that should give wearers a tingle of pleasure every time they put one on. It is a garment born out of revolution, warfare and pestilence. The suit still bears the marks of this turbulent past as well as the influence of Enlightenment thinking, sporting pursuits and a Regency dandy. In the year that may well mark the 150th anniversary of the suit it seems a shame that no celebrations were held in its honor.