Why Is the Live-Event Ticket Market So Screwed Up?

The public has almost no chance to buy good tickets to the best events. Ticket brokers, meanwhile, make huge profits on the secondary markets. Here’s the story of how this market got so dysfunctional, how it can be fixed – and why it probably won’t be.

Are We Running Out of Ideas?

Economists have a hard time explaining why productivity growth has been shrinking. One theory: true innovation has gotten much harder – and much more expensive. So what should we do next?

Is America Ready for a “No-Lose Lottery”? (Update)

Most people don’t enjoy the simple, boring act of putting money in a savings account. But we do love to play the lottery. So what if you combine the two, creating a new kind of savings account with a lottery payout?

An Astronaut, a Catalan, and Two Linguists Walk Into a Bar…: TMSIDK Episode 36

Why New York has skinny skyscrapers, how to weaponize water, and what astronauts talk about in space. John McWhorter is co-host; Bari Weiss is live fact-checker.

Farming Without Sun or Soil and Eating Manna From Heaven: TMSIDK Episode 35

This week, we work on our survival skills: in the desert, on the tundra, and growing food in abandoned warehouses. Actress Sas Goldberg is co-host; A.J. Jacobs (author of It’s All Relative) is live fact-checker.

Mind Games: TMSIDK Episode 34

This is not a riddle: Why would water run uphill in Antarctica? According to researcher Robin Bell from Columbia’s Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory, some Antarctic ice sheets sit two miles above rivers, squishing everything below them and squeezing water up the side of mountains — against gravity — for 60 to 70 miles. When the water gets […]

Jon Batiste, Gail Simmons, and Strange Smells: TMSIDK Episode 33

Things we learn this week: dogs aren't so great at sniffing, men aren't so lazy, and New York doesn't smell so bad (anymore). Gail Simmons (Top Chef) is co-host; Jon Batiste plays his melodica for us; the live fact-checker is Mike Maughan.

All About Bugs (of the Animal and Computer Varieties): TMSIDK Episode 32

Musical crickets, crop-saving wasps — and why you should pre-bug your software. John McWhorter is co-host; the live fact-checker is Bari Weiss.

School Start Times, Brand Names, and Too Much Ground Beef: TMSIDK Episode 31

We filled this episode with insights about the true value of ground beef, sleeping in, company names, and more. Alex Wagner (CBS This Morning Saturday, The Atlantic) is our special guest co-host, with AJ Jacobs (author of It's All Relative) as real-time fact-checker.

How to Count to Infinity: TMSIDK Episode 30

Mary Roach (author of Stiff, Spook, Bonk, Gulp, and Grunt) is our special guest co-host, with AJ Jacobs (author of It's All Relative) as real-time fact-checker. If the promise of tractor beams doesn't pull you in, our guests also explore robotic fish, counting to infinity, and more.