The Electric Typewriter

Great articles and essays by the world's best journalists and writers.

25 Great Articles and Essays
about Transportation

The best writing about getting from A to B

Cars

Farewell, My Lovely by E.B. White

The Model T Ford, an American legend.

The Pedal-to-the-Metal, Totally Illegal, Cross-Country Sprint for Glory by Charles Graeber

A crazy dream: to beat the legendary Cannonball Run record by crossing the country in under 32 hours and 7 minutes.

Motorhead Messiah by Clive Thompson

Johnathan Goodwin can get 100 mpg out of a Lincoln Continental, cut emissions by 80%, and double the horsepower. Does the car business have the guts to follow him?

Rocket Car: Urban Legend? by Anonymous

Once upon a time, in some out-of-the-way part of the country a maniac took a rocket of some sort and mounted it on the back of a car...

Lithium Dreams by Lawrence Wright

Can Bolivia become the Saudi Arabia of the electric-car era?

The Traffic Guru by Tom Vanderbilt

Traffic engineers are rather obscure characters, though their work influences our lives every day…

Between the Lines by Dave Gardetta

A journey through the world of parking

What Goes 95 Miles Per Hour for 17 Days Straight? by Jonathan Miles

The Paris Dakar Rally, is a bone-crushing off-road race through the deepest Sahara

Flying

Making it fly by Peter Rinearson

A special report on the conception, design, manufacture, marketing and delivery of a new jetliner — the Boeing 757

The Mother Load by P. J. O'Rourke

An inside look at the A380, the world's biggest passenger plane

Something's Got to Give by Darcy Frey

All the way down the bank of radar scopes, the air traffic controllers have that savage, bug-eyed look, like men on the verge of drowning...

The Turn

At the very heart of winged flight lies the banked turn, a procedure that by now seems so routine and familiar that airline passengers appreciate neither its elegance and mystery nor its dangerously delusive character.

Frequent Flight by Ian Bogost

Freeway, parking lot, door S-3, South security checkpoint, wallet, shoes, laptop, zip-lock, escalator, train, SkyClub, jetway, seat, jacket, bourbon, nap, tarmac, sky, sky, sky…

Congo from the Cockpit by William Langewiesche

The Democratic Republic of the Congo, where old airplanes go to die

Slam and Jam by William Langewiesche

For all the reports of equipment failures and "close calls" and controller burnout, the nation's air-traffic-control system is in fact far less precarious than people imagine it to be.

Commuting

Learning About Humanity on Public Transportation by Chris Gethard

Notable moments spent on a subway usually do nothing more than expose human awfulness at its most pronounced...

There and Back Again by Nick Paumgarten

People who feel they have smooth, manageable commutes evangelize. Those who hate the commute think of it as a core affliction.

Slugging by Emily Badger

How commuters have taken thousands of cars off highways via a homegrown rideshare system.

Up and Then Down by Nick Paumgarten

The lives of elevators.

The People on the Bus by Adam Gopnik

Bus-blindness is a standard New York illness...