Wired’s Guide to Surviving a Volcanic Eruption

Using the eruption of Mount Vesuvius and its impact upon Pompeii as an example, Wired writer Cody Cassidy (author of Who Ate The First Oyster?) delves into the factual ways people survived the perils of magma, raining ash and explosive gas. With the help of Pier Paolo Petrone (forensic anthropologist at the University of Naples) and James Moore (volcanologist and scientist emeritus at the US Geological Survey), …

Japan’s New Earthquake-Proof Bullet Train

Commissioned by the Central Japan Railway Company to offer support during the now-postponed 2020 Olympics, the new N700S (Supreme) bullet train runs the roughly 250-mile stretch between Tokyo and Osaka. Though it can reach 224mph, it’s being capped at 177 for safety reasons—and it incorporates better brakes and running controls for slowing and stopping. Its makers also claim that the train is earthquake-proof thanks to …

The UN’s Floating City Concept

Presented by a group of designers, architects and engineers at a United Nations roundtable last week, this floating city could be the future of sustainable (and affordable) living. Built in a lilypad-like array of hexagonal platforms, nearly 10,000 citizens could live in this sea-based city, which would float—but also be moored to the ocean floor—just a mile off the coastline. The citizens would also, in …