Experience the day Pearl Harbor was attacked in virtual reality



The day of Dec. 7, the moment in history when the U.S. was attacked by Japan’s forces on American soil at Pearl Harbor in 1941, continues to be a special day of remembrance for citizens of both countries, as it led to a turning point in World War II

Now, at the 75th anniversary of the attack at Pearl Harbor, we can take a trip back into history thanks to Time’s new “Remembering Pearl Harbor” virtual reality experience on Viveport for the HTC Vive and in the LIFE VR app. 

Told primarily through the accounts of 103-year-old WWII veteran Lt. James Downing, the experience uses information and artifacts from the National WWII Museum and the Library of Congress, as well as gripping visuals and sound design, to transport you back to that fateful day.  Read more…

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Rare photos capture the attack on Pearl Harbor from the Japanese perspective, 75 years ago



Bomber pilots who participated in the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Image: ullstein bild/ullstein bild via Getty Images

In 1941, it seemed to many in Japan that war against the United States was inevitable

Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, commander-in-chief of the Combined Fleet, had opposed Japan’s alliance with Germany and Italy and its invasion of China

He had also traveled and studied throughout the United States, and understood that Japan’s island empire could not hope to defeat the Americans’ vast resources and industrial capacity in a prolonged war.

Despite his reservations, the pro-war political climate ultimately forced Yamamoto to devise a plan to strike the United States. Read more…

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Witness the devastation of Aleppo in this 360-degree video



One of the biggest and most horrific stories of 2016 has been the ongoing destruction in the Syrian city of Aleppo and a new 360-degree video gives viewers a more complete, immersive view of the of the crumbling historic city.

The video, shared on Tuesday by the Aleppo Media Center, shows the ruins of the city’s eastern al-Shaar neighborhood.

The video isn’t the first such experience to show the utter devastation in Aleppo. Earlier in 2016, Amnesty International Australia used footage shot in 2015 to put together a “virtual reality” experience of the damage in the city, the first time a war zone was seen in this format.  Read more…

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Spaghetti source: Inside the history of pasta production




A worker hangs pasta to dry in a factory in Italy.

Image: Alfred Eisenstaedt/ullstein bild via Getty Images

Pasta, the most famous staple of Italian cuisine, was first recorded in Sicily in the 12th century, a few centuries after Arab invaders brought a dried, noodle-like dish to the island.

Mainly made with durum wheat and eggs or water, pasta (from the Latin for “dough”) was for many centuries a food reserved for the rich and privileged. It was not until the 18th century that industrialized production made it a cheap staple food for large numbers of Italians.

Soft and pliable pasta dough is shaped into hundreds of different forms, from the simple strands and sheets of spaghetti and lasagne to bowties, seashells, wagon wheels and bicycles. Read more…

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Never-before-seen photos capture the wild audience at a 1970 Bowie performance



Image: Tom Busby/The Roundhouse

In March 1970, London music venue The Roundhouse (a one-time railroad structure celebrating its 50th anniversary this year) held what they billed as “Seven Nights of Celebration” in a “Living Theatre Environment.”

The weeklong festival, “Atomic Sunrise,” was a collaboration between regular performers at the venue’s Sunday Implosion gigs and The Living Theatre, a radical experimental theatre company.

While the Living Theatre performers moved among the dancing and reveling audience, a succession of bands played onstage, including Genesis and David Bowie with one of his early bands, The Hype. Read more…

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These incredible color postcards of 1890 Switzerland are anything but neutral



Vispach Bridge and the Matterhorn, Valais.

Image: Library of Congress

These pictures of the sublime landscapes and stately towns of Switzerland were created using the Photochrom process, a technique for applying color to monochrome images with nuance and precision.

Invented in Switzerland by an employee of a printing company, Photochrom was a time-consuming and delicate process.

First, a tablet of lithographic limestone would be coated with a light-sensitive emulsion, placed under a photo negative and exposed to sunlight for several hours.

The emulsion would then harden in proportion to the tones of the negative. The softer portions would be removed with a solvent, leaving a fixed lithographic image on the stone. Read more…

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‘Vikings’ creator previews Ragnar’s journey of redemption in Season 4 return



This recap and interview contains spoilers for the midseason premiere of Vikings — Season 4, episode 11, titled “The Outsider.”

When we last saw Ragnar Lothbrok (Travis Fimmel), he had just returned to his home in Kattegat after a six year absence. Much to the disapproval of his people, he had abandoned his responsibilities as king in the wake of the Vikings’ crushing defeat in Paris at the hands of the Frankish forces led by his brother, Rollo (Clive Standen), and hadn’t been heard from in years.

Much had apparently changed in Ragnar’s time away — his young sons, Ivar (Alex Høgh Andersen), Ubbe (Jordan Patrick Smith), Hvitserk (Marco Ilsø) and Sigurd (David Lindstron), had all grown into headstrong young men, disillusioned by their absent father, while his eldest son Bjorn (Alexander Ludwig), was preparing to sail to the Mediterranean, eager to forge his own legacy away from his father’s shadow.  Read more…

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When NASA intentionally crashed a passenger jet, it somehow went even worse than expected



Image: NASA

On Dec. 1, 1984, scientists from NASA and the FAA took a passenger jet out to the desert and crashed it on purpose.

The Controlled Impact Demonstration was an experiment to test a new fuel additive which could potentially reduce catastrophic fuel fires in a crash scenario. The FM-9 additive had shown promise in simulated impacts, but a real test was necessary.

NASA obtained an aging Boeing 720 for the project and brought it out to Rogers Dry Lake at Edwards Air Force Base in California

Crashing a jet was a rare opportunity. In addition to testing the fuel additive, scientists outfitted the cabin with an array of instruments for other survivability experiments, from new seat and luggage bin designs to fireproof materials. Read more…

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Soldiers on WWI’s Italian Front fought enemies, frostbite and avalanches




Soldiers hoist a field gun up a cliff face.

Image: Robert Hunt/Windmill Books/UIG via Getty Images

While the muddy and horrific trench warfare of the Western Front has become the most enduring image of World War I, some of the conflict’s bloodiest battles were fought high in the mountains of the Italian Front.

At the start of the war in 1914, the Kingdom of Italy was part of the Triple Alliance with Germany and Austria-Hungary, but refused to commit troops to their allies’ campaigns, arguing that their obligations were purely defensive.

The Italians also had their eyes on several territories controlled by Austria-Hungary along the Adriatic coast and the Alps Read more…

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During WWI, interned German sailors built a charming village in North Carolina



German internees playfully stage an “alligator attack” on the shore of the French Broad River.

Image: North Carolina Museum of History

During World War I, the sleepy North Carolina resort town of Hot Springs more than doubled in population as it became host to one of the largest internment camps in the country.

When the United States abandoned neutrality and declared war on Germany in April 1917, thousands of German commercial sailors were unlucky enough to be docked at American ports, including the crew of the world’s largest passenger ship, the SS Vaterland, which had been stuck in Hoboken, New Jersey since the outbreak of hostilities three years earlier. Read more…

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