Thumbs up? Map shows Europe’s hitchhiking landscape

Average waiting time for hitchhikers in Ireland: Less than 30 minutes. In southern Spain: More than 90 minutes.

Image: Abel Suyok
  • A popular means of transportation from the 1920s to the 1980s, hitchhiking has since fallen in disrepute.
  • However, as this map shows, thumbing a ride still occupies a thriving niche – if at great geographic variance.
  • In some countries and areas, you'll be off the street in no time. In other places, it's much harder to thumb your way from A to B.
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Strange Maps

New insights into ​hikikomori​ — people who withdraw from society for months or years on end

What causes people to retreat into their homes indefinitely?

Hikikomori is a dark term that describes people who stay holed up in their homes, or even just their bedrooms, isolated from everyone except their family, for many months or years.

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Mind & Brain

Fascism and conspiracy theories: The symptoms of broken communication

The lost practice of face-to-face communication has made the world a more extreme place.

  • The world was saner when we spoke face-to-face, argues John Cameron Mitchell. Not looking someone in the eye when you talk to them raises the potential for miscommunication and conflict.
  • Social media has been an incredible force for activism and human rights, but it's also negatively affected our relationship with the media. We are now bombarded 24/7 with news that either drives us to anger or apathy.
  • Sitting behind a screen makes polarization worse, and polarization is fertile ground for conspiracy theories and fascism, which Cameron describes as irrationally blaming someone else for your problems.
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Videos
  • We all exprience self-doubt — sometimes called 'imposter syndrome'.
  • NASA astronomer Michelle Thaller explains how the universe itself has been a salve for her fears.
  • The universe chooses people to be interested it, she says. What has the universe chosen you for?
Videos
  • High-conflict personalities possesses 4 qualities that may encourage them to become politicians.
  • Overly emotional communication suits high-conflict personalities and drives the media to cover them.
  • As with any conman, relationships with high-conflict personalities are calculated and transactional.


Videos