Illustration: an eleventh century Byzantine depiction of King Solomon

Source: https://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e4-380c-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99

How People Paid Their Taxes in Biblical Times

Think doing your taxes is annoying? Imagine trying it without a computer, a calculator… or even the Arabic numeral system.
uber driver gig economy

Working More for Less: Dangers of the Gig Economy

The "gig economy" benefits startups and tech companies, but it may be unsustainable, and unethical for the economy, and workers, at large.
Car junkyard

The Birth of Planned Obsolescence

Before WWII, American businesses began embracing “creative waste”—the idea that throwing things away and buying new ones could fuel a strong economy.
mens magazine

How Magazines Created a New Culture of Manhood

Middle-class American manhood changed in the mid-twentieth century. And the new ideal of masculine consumption was captured by men’s magazines.

How America Tried (and Failed) to Solve Its “Servant Problem”

In the early part of the twentieth century, most middle-class American homes had at least one servant. Then the "servant problem" arose.
Tiananmen Square

Will Engagement in the Middle East Change China?

Saudi Arabia’s King Abdullah visits China this month, marking China’s increasing involvement in the Middle East. China has long had a Muslim minority group.
Cotton gin

Automation in the 1940s Cotton Fields

Automation is a bit of a Rorschach test for anyone interested in workers’ rights. In the 1940s, the mechanization of cotton farming changed the US economy.
Michael Galinksy super tv mall

The Rise and Fall of the Shopping Mall

Is the shopping mall a thing of the past? A look at how the suburbs helped to create the mall--and what is now killing those same shopping centers.
honest ed's signage

The Candid Appeal of the Advertising Show Card

A hand-painted show card evokes a certain nostalgia and humanity that machine-made signs can never arouse: It suggests honesty.
Peter Thiel

How Tech Companies Got In the White House

What role will technology companies—and tech CEOS—play in Donald Trump's White House?