Nautilus

How Enormous Dominoes Can Help You Rethink Saving for Retirement

A still from Prudential’s commercial, showing the largest domino to ever be toppled. The point was to make a spectacle of the power of compound interest.Courtesy of Prudential

It’s a clear warm day in early August, and the Harvard psychologist Dan Gilbert is lucky it isn’t windy. Towering right behind him stands a 30-foot tall domino. It’s 15 feet wide, four feet long, and weighs two tons. Gilbert, who is bald and has a thick white goatee and oval spectacles, looks puny by comparison. Passersby, noticing

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from Nautilus

Nautilus8 min readScience
Can New Species Evolve From Cancers? Maybe.
Reprinted with permission from Quanta Magazine’s Abstractions blog. Aggressive cancers can spread so fiercely that they seem less like tissues gone wrong and more like invasive parasites looking to consume and then break free of their host. If a wild
Nautilus6 min read
Butterfly Wonk Robert Pyle Pens His First Novel 44 Years in the Making
Last year marked a first for 71-year old Robert Michael Pyle, the acclaimed author, naturalist, and ecologist: the publication of his long-awaited first novel, Magdalena Mountain, nearly half a century in the making. Pyle has been investigating the b
Nautilus15 min read
How American Tycoons Created the Dinosaur: The story of dinosaurs is also the story of capitalism.
The dinosaur is a chimera. Some parts of this complex assemblage are the result of biological evolution. But others are products of human ingenuity, constructed by artists, scientists, and technicians in a laborious process that stretches from the di