Adrienne LaFrance

A View From Space So Clear You Can See the Cars Moving

Surreal views of Boston, London, and Barcelona from an ultra-high-definition camera aboard the International Space Station.

How Airbags Are Supposed to Work

A volatile chemical compound is being used as propellant in airbags made by Takata, the company behind the massive auto recall in the United States. Should it be?

Are Taxis Safer Than Uber?

Many major cities don't keep comprehensive data about assaults against passengers—and even FBI-led background checks have limitations.

The Ghost of Earthquakes Past

Mega-quakes trigger massive temblors for years after they first hit.

The Slow, Agonizing Death of the MetroCard

New York's long-heralded swipe-free subway payment system may not arrive until 2022.

Big Data Can Peer Into Your Soul Based on Your Zip Code

Software company Esri's database files Americans into 67 different consumer groups—with eerie accuracy.

Is There a Better Way to Measure Earthquakes?

The logarithmic magnitude scale is confusing to many, but it's here to stay. 

How Man-Made Earthquakes Are Changing the Seismic Landscape

Scientists say fracking is part of why Oklahoma now rivals California in quake activity.

The Robots Are Coming, but Are They Coming for Our Jobs?

Experts are split on whether artificial intelligence will boost—or decimate—the economy.

The Evolution of Slang

For a century and a half, The New York Times has been earnestly—and hilariously—defining the evolving language of cities. 

How the Bicycle Paved the Way for Women's Rights

The technology craze of the 1890s meant fashion freedom and transportation independence.

Why Do We Love Manhattanhenge So Much?

Where nature meets the grid, we find an ancient way of connecting with the cosmos. 

An Acid-Spewing ATM That Protects Itself From Thieves

How scientists turned a beetle's unusual defense mechanism into technology.

The Site of a 1950s Plane Crash Just Became a National Landmark

But the Park Service won't tell you how to get there.

What Happened to Skywriting?

How skywriting rose and fell, and why its instagrammability may lead to a resurgence.