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Move the World.

Welcome back to another edition of This Week In Ideas, where we share with you the coolest stories we’ve shared amongst ourselves. Our theme this week? The future is already here.

No more grocery store checkout lines: “Customers will be able to scan their phones at the entrance using a new Amazon Go mobile app. Then the technology will track what items they pick up or even return to the shelves and add them to a virtual shopping cart in real time, according a video Amazon posted on YouTube. Once the customers exit the store, they’ll be charged on their Amazon account automatically.”

A new type of propulsion is causing a stir in the physics community: “The basic idea of the EM Drive is an asymmetrical cavity where microwaves are bounced around inside. Since the microwaves are trapped inside the cavity, there is no propellent or emitted electromagnetic radiation to push the device in a particular direction, standard physics says there should be no thrust on the device. And yet, for reasons even the researchers can't explain, the EM Drive does appear to experience thrust when activated.”

Photoshop, but for your voice: “The same company that gave the world Photoshop wants to do for the human voice what it did for the human image—give people the tools to warp it in anyway they see fit. At the Adobe Max Creativity Conference, the company premiered VoCo: an audio editing suite that will allow users to make people say whatever they want just by typing.”

A new chapter for AirBNB: The renting company is making a big push into the world of experience booking. “The first batch of Airbnb Trips will include lessons from a samurai master in Japan, training with long-distance runners in Kenya, and surfing with a local pro in Malibu.”

Watch an ad, go for a ride: “Would you watch a few ads on your smartphone if it meant you got a free ride on the tram or subway? Of course you would, especially if you discovered you didn't have any change for a ticket.”  

Explore More Stories

Global Health
The Next Pandemic Is Out There. Is the Private Sector Ready?
Event 201 works with private sector for global pandemic preparedness.
Global Health
The Next Pandemic Is Out There. Is the Private Sector Ready?
Johns Hopkins' simulated, international catastrophe is helping business, government, and public health leaders improve global pandemic preparedness.

Johns Hopkins' simulated, international catastrophe is helping business, government, and public health leaders improve global pandemic preparedness.

#fixingjustice - Harm Reduction
A Day in the Life of a 'Violence Interruptor'
A Day in the Life of a 'Violence Interruptor'
#fixingjustice - Harm Reduction
A Day in the Life of a 'Violence Interruptor'
Freethink followed Andre T. Mitchell, the founder of Man Up!, and his violence interrupter team for a day in...
By Michelle Frankfurter

Freethink followed Andre T. Mitchell, the founder of Man Up!, and his violence interrupter team for a day in Brooklyn as they responded to a recent shooting in a nearby neighborhood.

#fixingjustice - Policing
Independent Watchdogs Invisible Institute Helps Police Accountability
How to Hold Police Accountable
Watch Now
#fixingjustice - Policing
Independent Watchdogs Invisible Institute Helps Police Accountability
The Invisible Institute is making Chicago police complaints easily available to the public—and is helping hold police accountable.
Watch Now

A Freethink update: It's been several months since we first brought you the story of journalist Jamie Kalven and his influential "Sixteen Shots" expose in Slate that depicted a corrupt Chicago police department in the midst of a cover-up following the racist killing of teenager Laquan McDonald, who was shot 16 times by Officer Jason Van Dyke on October 20, 2014. Since then, Kalven has written another critical piece, this...

#fixingjustice - Harm Reduction
Why Drugs Are Hurting More People Than Ever – And What to Do About It
Why Drugs Are Hurting More People Than Ever – And What to Do About It
#fixingjustice - Harm Reduction
Why Drugs Are Hurting More People Than Ever – And What to Do About It
Is the solution to dangerous drugs... making them safer?

Is the solution to dangerous drugs... making them safer?

Dispatches
Is a "Global Village" a Pandemic Waiting to Happen?
Is a "Global Village" a Pandemic Waiting to Happen?
Dispatches
Is a "Global Village" a Pandemic Waiting to Happen?
New research suggests that our hyper-connected world might be protecting us against devastating plagues.

New research suggests that our hyper-connected world might be protecting us against devastating plagues.

The Phoenix
How The Phoenix Is Fighting Addiction with Fitness
How The Phoenix Is Fighting Addiction with Fitness
Watch Now
The Phoenix
How The Phoenix Is Fighting Addiction with Fitness
Meet the group that is helping thousands of people transform their lives and unlock their potential.
Watch Now

Meet The Phoenix, the free sober active community that’s using fitness to change how we treat addiction. Scott Strode, the founder, got sober with the help of a gym and wanted to help others with their recovery. Now thousands of people are transforming their lives and unlocking their potential. In doing so they are challenging the stigma around drug rehabilitation by publicly embracing their sobriety and talking about it...

Hudson Link
For People in Prison, a Second Chance to Give Back
For People in Prison, a Second Chance to Give Back
Watch Now
Hudson Link
For People in Prison, a Second Chance to Give Back
50% of people released from prison return within three years. This program is changing that.
Watch Now

Nearly 50% of people released from prison return within three years. But less than 1% of graduates from Hudson Link for Higher Education in Prison ever return. By offering college degree programs, their mission is to give people the tools to turn their lives around and give back to their communities when released. Freethink is proud to present this story in partnership with Stand Together. For more information on other...

Innovation
Why Prisons are Showing Nature Videos to Inmates
Why Prisons are Showing Nature Videos to Inmates
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Innovation
Why Prisons are Showing Nature Videos to Inmates
Watching nature videos in the unlikeliest of places
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At a maximum security prison in Oregon, select inmates watched 60 minutes of nature videos every day for a year. Inspired by the research of Dr. Nalini Nadkarni, the study was intended to measure the psychological benefits of exposure to nature. The results were incredible. Nearly half the inmates said the images soothed them, while violent acts in the prison dropped by 26%. Additionally, guards reported the inmates...

Rise
5 Fascinating Ways Humans are Adapting to Cities
5 Fascinating Ways Humans are Adapting to Cities
Rise
5 Fascinating Ways Humans are Adapting to Cities
There’s a global transformation happening - millions of people are migrating to cities from the countryside.
By Michael O'Shea

There’s a global transformation happening - millions of people are migrating to cities from the countryside.