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How to Avoid Gate-Checking Your Luggage How to Avoid Gate-Checking Your Luggage

Why are there a million categories that decide when you board a plane? The Intelligencer explains: Airlines figured out that random boarding is faster than back-to-front boarding, because it spreads people throughout the plane as they stow their luggage and get seated, instead of the back section getting mobbed, then…

How to Read More Books Without Stalling Out

Filmmaker Max Joseph wants to read more than one book a year—he wants to read one a week. So he asked a few voracious readers for advice, in a 38-minute video that includes lengthy tours of European bookstores. Here’s some of the best advice for never-readers who want to start reading more books.

How to Outsmart Algorithms and Take Control of Your Information Diet How to Outsmart Algorithms and Take Control of Your Information Diet

“Certain algorithms,” says Tim Cook, “pull you toward the things you already know, believe, or like, and they push away everything else. Push back.” In a commencement speech to Tulane University, the Apple CEO tells graduates to take charge of their information diet. And much as we want to sneer at the irony of a…

What's the Best Outdoor Event in Your City? What's the Best Outdoor Event in Your City?

In New York we’ve got Shakespeare in the Park, the Mermaid Parade, the weekly Smorgasburg food court, the Socrates Annual, Summer Streets, Rooftop Films, and my favorite, the annual Brooklyn Book Festival at Borough Hall. Albuquerque has a hot air balloon festival. Pittsburgh has the Three Rivers Regatta. Rochester,…

How to Talk Shit Online How to Talk Shit Online

“People are just as allowed to dislike things as they are permitted to enjoy them,” writes cultural critic Kate Wagner in the Baffler essay “Don’t Let People Enjoy Things.” Wagner (creator of the architectural critique blog McMansion Hell) shuts down one of the dumber memes going around right now, where fans bravely…

What to Watch After Game of Thrones Ends What to Watch After Game of Thrones Ends

Ask not for whom the game thrones; it thrones for thee. This weekend Game of Thrones, the television show that invented death, finally ends. Now you can move on, at least until the prequel starts. What should you watch next to scratch that itch? It depends on what you’ll miss about Thrones.

Celebrate Beautiful Microcosms With the Miniworlds Subreddit Celebrate Beautiful Microcosms With the Miniworlds Subreddit

Each subforum on Reddit is a microcosm. Unlike the chaos of a Twitter or Facebook feed, a subreddit sticks to one format or topic. It has its own rules, customs, and in-jokes. And on r/Miniworlds, every post is a microcosm too. Each r/Miniworlds post is a photo of a tiny scene that looks like a whole world. Some are…

Thrill Your Cat With These Videos of Songbirds and Squirrels

If you want to entertain your cat, or get some juicy phone footage of your cat going nuts and peeking behind your computer screen, then play these YouTube videos of English songbirds and squirrels. Cornwall resident Paul Dinning shot hundreds of wildlife videos, in which birds (and the occasional squirrel or mouse)…

Ogle These Vintage Public-Domain Cat Pictures From the Library of Congress Ogle These Vintage Public-Domain Cat Pictures From the Library of Congress

The Library of Congress hosts a vast library of public domain images that can be used for anything you want, including commercial use. And they occasionally curate small collections from their database of over 800,000 photos, prints, and drawings. The Library has built 28 themed collections of images, including a…

Listen to Our Playlist While You Write Listen to Our Playlist While You Write

Writing is 1% writing, 1% staring into space, and 98% doing little errands to “prepare” for writing. My favorite method of not writing is to compose a very specific playlist to “soundtrack” the thing that I’m writing. If you go hunting for the right music to write to, sorry, I’ve just ruined your excuse: here is…

The Best iPad Keyboard Shortcuts You Didn't Know About The Best iPad Keyboard Shortcuts You Didn't Know About

If you work on an iPad with an external keyboard, you can take advantage of some of the same keyboard shortcuts that come on a Mac. The Sweet Setup lists good keyboard shortcuts that particularly matter to iPad users, including these less obvious ones:

How to Live in a World That's Obsessed With Game of Thrones How to Live in a World That's Obsessed With Game of Thrones

One more episode of Game of Thrones left. A lot of people are gonna have some postpartum feelings. I’m going to feel relieved. I’ve spent eight years deciding not to watch our decade’s defining TV show. For a while I felt like an outcast, like Jon Snow, or Arya Stark, or Theon Greyjoy, or Tyrion Lannister. Okay so I…

We're the Founders of the Hard Times, and This Is How We Work We're the Founders of the Hard Times, and This Is How We Work

For years, there was one good satirical news site on the internet. The Onion (now a sister blog of Lifehacker) had many imitators, none of them successful. Then the field opened up: Reductress parodied women’s media; Babylon Bee and Landover Baptist made fun of Christian culture; the Onion launched a weirder site…

What's the Most Interesting Bar in Your City? What's the Most Interesting Bar in Your City?

Every bar should have a “thing.” My very favorite bar, Burp Castle in the East Village of Manhattan, is themed like a monastery; the bartenders wear monks’ robes and gently shush the patrons to keep the noise down. My local Brooklyn bar, High Dive, isn’t quite so distinctive, but it serves popcorn and has pinball in…

Oh God, Sinemia Has a New 'Unlimited' Movie Plan [Updated] Oh God, Sinemia Has a New 'Unlimited' Movie Plan [Updated]

Movie-theater subscription service Sinemia just announced a new “unlimited” plan for $15/month. You can only see one movie a day, but you can see it at any theater at any time. Update 3/29/19 4:25 p.m.: Sinemia tells Lifehacker there are no blackouts on particular movies—a common problem with competitor MoviePass. On…

How to Appreciate Home After a Vacation How to Appreciate Home After a Vacation

On a good vacation, I always catch myself thinking, “Man, it would be nice to live here.” I might be right, but only accidentally—of course living in a city feels nice when you don’t have to do any work. That feeling makes for a letdown when I get back home, and all my normal responsibilities are waiting for me.…

Diversify Your Stock Photos With Broadly's Gender Spectrum Collection Diversify Your Stock Photos With Broadly's Gender Spectrum Collection

Stock photos tend to lag behind the culture. They fill business photos with just men, or under-represent minorities, or only show people filling outdated cultural roles. It’s an issue we run into a lot at Lifehacker, where we have to illustrate upwards of 15 posts every day on a limited photo budget, and want to…

I Wish I'd Learned This Phrase Before I Went to Another Country I Wish I'd Learned This Phrase Before I Went to Another Country

Learning a language for a trip is different from learning it on a large scale; Duolingo is way too comprehensive, as is anything that tries to build up from fundamentals of grammar. You need a few phrases, like “please” and “thank you,” “What does this mean?” and “Where is the bathroom?” But most of the time, I needed…

How Tokyo Hacks Its Streets and Subways How Tokyo Hacks Its Streets and Subways

New York is actually a great city to wander in—it’s pretty safe, pedestrian friendly, and laced with public parks and waterfronts. But when Lifehacker sent a team to Tokyo to find the local hacks, damn was I jealous of the city planning. There are lots of touches that make Tokyo easy to navigate and pleasant to wander.

Gmail's 'Canned Responses' Feature Is Finally Good Gmail's 'Canned Responses' Feature Is Finally Good

Gmail’s template feature just got a badly needed redesign. Poorly named “canned responses,” this isn’t the feature where Gmail suggests a two-word reply to an email. (That’s “smart reply.”) This is a much more useful feature, buried in the “Advanced” settings menu on Gmail’s desktop interface, that lets you save…

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