Rachel Lopez

Rachel Lopez

Rachel Lopez is a a writer and editor with the Hindustan Times. She has worked with the Times Group, Time Out and Vogue and has a special interest in city history, culture, etymology and internet and society.

Articles by Rachel Lopez
The coronavirus pandemic changed the phrases that we used. (Shutterstock/ Representative)
The coronavirus pandemic changed the phrases that we used. (Shutterstock/ Representative)

Phrases we never thought we’d say but for 2020 !

PUBLISHED ON MAR 01, 2021 02:16 PM IST
Sentences we never thought we’d say, and then 2020 happened
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Keep your clues simple and relatable. Like this South American river, that lends its name to a global online brand. (Shutterstock)
Keep your clues simple and relatable. Like this South American river, that lends its name to a global online brand. (Shutterstock)

Planning a quiz? Here’s how to pop the questions

UPDATED ON FEB 28, 2021 07:13 AM IST
What makes for a perfect quiz? Clues that go past Googled facts, and an audience that enjoys discovering what they didn’t know they knew. Here’s how good quizmasters do it
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Lisbeth Salander, aka the titular Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, is a believable hacker, out on a mission to unearth a long-buried crime (Sony Pictures)
Lisbeth Salander, aka the titular Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, is a believable hacker, out on a mission to unearth a long-buried crime (Sony Pictures)

All right, I’m in! Our favourite on-screen hackers, programmers and techies

PUBLISHED ON FEB 26, 2021 08:52 PM IST
Need a plot device? Bring in the IT experts. See how our understanding of tech evolved with pop-culture
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Intel employees in 1971. This California facility is where the 4004 was initially manufactured. (Image courtesy: Intel)
Intel employees in 1971. This California facility is where the 4004 was initially manufactured. (Image courtesy: Intel)

The microprocessor is 50 years old. But what makes it so special?

PUBLISHED ON FEB 26, 2021 08:19 PM IST
Half a century ago, Intel’s 4004 chip was born, ushering in the digital revolution. Take a closer look at the little chip that changed the world, altered India’s place in it, and quietly powers modern life
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Visions of hell have long been shaped by Dante, as in The Third Circle, by the 16th century Flemish painter Johannes Stradanus.
Visions of hell have long been shaped by Dante, as in The Third Circle, by the 16th century Flemish painter Johannes Stradanus.

Why Dante, 700 years later, is still a hell of a journey

UPDATED ON FEB 20, 2021 07:32 AM IST
See how The Divine Comedy’s ideas of hell, demons and the afterlife continue to shape our imagination.
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The Mount Mary church in Bandra grew out of a simple mud oratory built by the Portuguese. (HT Illustration: Gajanan Nirphale)
The Mount Mary church in Bandra grew out of a simple mud oratory built by the Portuguese. (HT Illustration: Gajanan Nirphale)

The beginnings of Bombay: Tracing a Portuguese legacy

PUBLISHED ON FEB 05, 2021 07:54 PM IST
It’s been 360 years since the Portuguese handed over a few malarial islands to the English, jumpstarting the story of Mumbai. What still remains of that era?
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 (Shutterstock)
(Shutterstock)

How to survive the 24x7 sale season

PUBLISHED ON FEB 05, 2021 06:27 PM IST
What used to be an annual event is now a year-round medley. If you want to join the resistance, here’s how to frame the fight-back.
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In the running for the tag of Object 101 was this sculpture by the Syrian artist Issam Kourbaj — a flotilla of small craft, filled with burned matchsticks, a reminder of the global migrant crisis. (IMAGE: KINGS COLLEGE, CAMBRIDGE)
In the running for the tag of Object 101 was this sculpture by the Syrian artist Issam Kourbaj — a flotilla of small craft, filled with burned matchsticks, a reminder of the global migrant crisis. (IMAGE: KINGS COLLEGE, CAMBRIDGE)

What will define the decade gone by? Recharge by Rachel Lopez

PUBLISHED ON JAN 29, 2021 07:18 PM IST
Ten years after the phenomenal success of the radio show, podcast and book A History of the World in 100 Objects, experts try to choose an item to symbolise the 2010s. What will it be?
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An image of the Bubble Nebula taken by NASA’s Hubble space telescope. It’s 7,100 light years away, in the constellation Cassiopeia, and has a star 45 times the size of our sun. The bubble is formed by strong solar winds pushing interstellar gasses around. (NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA))
An image of the Bubble Nebula taken by NASA’s Hubble space telescope. It’s 7,100 light years away, in the constellation Cassiopeia, and has a star 45 times the size of our sun. The bubble is formed by strong solar winds pushing interstellar gasses around. (NASA, ESA, and the Hubble Heritage Team (STScI/AURA))

Good morning, Starshine! Scroll through the universe with the most iconic images of space

UPDATED ON JAN 30, 2021 04:40 PM IST
As telescopes gets smarter and space voyages more adventurous, take a look at the best recent views of worlds beyond our own, and what it takes to create them.
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Her father, Billy Ray Cyrus, sported a mullet in his heyday. But it’s Miley’s version that has triggered the hairstyle trend among A-listers this time around. (IMAGE COURTESY INSTAGRAM/ @MILEYCYRUS)
Her father, Billy Ray Cyrus, sported a mullet in his heyday. But it’s Miley’s version that has triggered the hairstyle trend among A-listers this time around. (IMAGE COURTESY INSTAGRAM/ @MILEYCYRUS)

Run and hide! The mullet is rearing its ugly head again

UPDATED ON JAN 24, 2021 06:36 AM IST
Everyone’s hair nightmare has made another comeback. Here’s why it keeps returning, and why celebrities love it so much.
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The Wikipedia Monument, an art work by Mihran Hakobyan, was installed in Poland in 2014. It’s a tribute to the site’s anonymous contributors. (Wikimedia Commons)
The Wikipedia Monument, an art work by Mihran Hakobyan, was installed in Poland in 2014. It’s a tribute to the site’s anonymous contributors. (Wikimedia Commons)

Wikipedia at 20: The internet’s go-to reference site, by the numbers

PUBLISHED ON JAN 16, 2021 04:56 PM IST
Did you know it’s reached the moon, makes an update every second, and made its billionth edit last week?
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Life is not an episode of Suits. You may not have a face-to-face interview anymore. Consider these pitfalls before your next job hunt. (IMAGE COURTESY USA NETWORK)
Life is not an episode of Suits. You may not have a face-to-face interview anymore. Consider these pitfalls before your next job hunt. (IMAGE COURTESY USA NETWORK)

Hire calling: How to update your CV for a pandemic-era work world

PUBLISHED ON JAN 15, 2021 09:34 PM IST
Should you mention that you were laid off? That you prefer to work from home? That you have excellent skills on TikTok? Recruiting is getting a reboot. Catch up here.
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Singapore’s hawker stalls are a beloved part of city life. But even the regulated model has flaws. New chefs find it hard to survive, get subsidies, and innovate. (SHUTTERSTOCK)
Singapore’s hawker stalls are a beloved part of city life. But even the regulated model has flaws. New chefs find it hard to survive, get subsidies, and innovate. (SHUTTERSTOCK)

Singapore’s street food has a Unesco tag. Can India’s hawkers get one too?

UPDATED ON JAN 16, 2021 10:13 AM IST
Indian street food isn’t confined to hawker centres. It’s spread across the country, with small vendors often selling a single item. But our diversity alone deserves being celebrated as our intangible heritage. Experts weigh in
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Ancient calendars could be intricate, beautiful, but confusing. Above is a section of the ancient Mayan calendar.(Shutterstock)
Ancient calendars could be intricate, beautiful, but confusing. Above is a section of the ancient Mayan calendar.(Shutterstock)

Lend me your years: How the Indian National Calendar came into being

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON JAN 02, 2021 08:29 PM IST
See how, back in 1955, an elite team headed by astrophysicist Meghnad Saha untangled India’s confusing variety of almanacs.
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Among the 3,500-odd found shopping lists on Grocerylists.org is this colourful one from 1986. What does an analysis of all the discarded lists show? That for many, mayonnaise is a challenge to spell.(IMAGE COURTESY GROCERYLISTS.ORG)
Among the 3,500-odd found shopping lists on Grocerylists.org is this colourful one from 1986. What does an analysis of all the discarded lists show? That for many, mayonnaise is a challenge to spell.(IMAGE COURTESY GROCERYLISTS.ORG)

Love lists? You’ll love these books that celebrate them

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON JAN 02, 2021 11:53 AM IST
A compilation of writings about our fondly held obsession with sorting, creating order and extracting sense from nonsense.
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A statue in Bruges, Belgium, of Moses holding up the Ten Commandments. Christianity, like most organised religions, is full of lists that describe and prescribe.(WIKIMEDIA COMMONS)
A statue in Bruges, Belgium, of Moses holding up the Ten Commandments. Christianity, like most organised religions, is full of lists that describe and prescribe.(WIKIMEDIA COMMONS)

1, 2, 3: How lists keep us safe, sane and stress-free

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON JAN 01, 2021 07:41 PM IST
In resolutions season, here’s a look at what lists do for us, why we make them, and our long and colourful relationships with them.
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(IMAGE COURTESY: FOX BROADCASTING COMPANY)
(IMAGE COURTESY: FOX BROADCASTING COMPANY)

How to ace the to-do list

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON JAN 01, 2021 06:10 PM IST
Done right, it can save time, even lives. But a mess of a list is just a waste of time and effort. Here’s what to do and what to avoid — in the form a handy list.
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The Carol Singers by William M Spittle (1858 - 1917). Most carols started out as folk songs, and the term carolling originally meant “to dance in a ring”.
The Carol Singers by William M Spittle (1858 - 1917). Most carols started out as folk songs, and the term carolling originally meant “to dance in a ring”.

Surprise, all ye faithful! The odd history of Christmas carols

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON DEC 18, 2020 04:50 PM IST
The best-loved seasonal songs aren’t as old as you think, were borrowed from raunchy folk songs and might even have been written for Thanksgiving.
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(Penguin Random House)
(Penguin Random House)

What happens when you let a science geek loose in an Indian kitchen?

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON DEC 18, 2020 04:46 PM IST
Krish Ashok is neither a scientist nor a chef. But his new book Masala Lab breaks down the science of Indian cooking to help novices master recipes faster.
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Is Christian Bale, angry, raspy, beat-up, the best actor to portray the caped crusader? Let’s line them up and check.(Image courtesy Warner Bros)
Is Christian Bale, angry, raspy, beat-up, the best actor to portray the caped crusader? Let’s line them up and check.(Image courtesy Warner Bros)

Superhero showdown: Who’s the best Batman on screen?

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON DEC 11, 2020 10:59 PM IST
There are Hollywood stars, voice actors and even animated Lego. Tell us if your favourite is in here.
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The suit from the Dark Knight rises was military grade, just what a billionaire would use.(Image courtesy Warner Bros)
The suit from the Dark Knight rises was military grade, just what a billionaire would use.(Image courtesy Warner Bros)

On your radar: A real-life guide to Batman’s tech

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON DEC 12, 2020 02:46 PM IST
Take a closer look at some of Gotham City’s futuristic gizmos and inventions, drawn from the real world.
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(Image courtesy DC Comics)
(Image courtesy DC Comics)

Why is Gotham in the entertainment spotlight?

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON DEC 13, 2020 02:19 PM IST
There are new films, new shows, headlined by new heroes and villains. There’s even going to be a show for pre-schoolers about the Batmobile. More than 80 years after Batman debuted, the DC Universe is welcoming new fans who take their cues from screen, not comic.
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(HT Illustration: Mohit Suneja)
(HT Illustration: Mohit Suneja)

Could you remember everything at a memory championship?

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON DEC 12, 2020 07:56 PM IST
New research is changing how we understand mind and recollection. But at national and global events of total recall, it’s all about speedy storage and retrieval.
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Say it in style: The woke fashion glossary

By Madhusree Ghosh & Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON DEC 12, 2020 09:13 AM IST
Say ”dripping” instead of ”flattering”, choose conscious over organic, and always question the fat tax.
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Monolith that was placed in a red-rock desert in an undisclosed location in San Juan County southeastern Utah.(AP photo)
Monolith that was placed in a red-rock desert in an undisclosed location in San Juan County southeastern Utah.(AP photo)

Are you on top of this week’s news?

UPDATED ON DEC 06, 2020 02:09 AM IST
The HT quiz is for know-it-alls and those who want to know it all. Ten questions every Sunday, covering events of the week. So, what’s your score?
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Mortician Carla Valentine’s show, Mortem, looks at the tales corpses tell.(Image courtesy The Chic and the Dead)
Mortician Carla Valentine’s show, Mortem, looks at the tales corpses tell.(Image courtesy The Chic and the Dead)

Case in point: True-crime podcasts that break the mould

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON DEC 04, 2020 07:20 PM IST
After a while, all true-crime podcasts start to sound the same. These shows break format and enter new territory
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(HT Illustration: Mohit Suneja)
(HT Illustration: Mohit Suneja)

Lesson from Kerala: How to hatch a bird atlas

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON DEC 04, 2020 07:05 PM IST
It’s the largest systematic bird survey in Asia. See how 1,000 citizen volunteers spent five years tracking flight paths, nesting spots and migration dates, keeping count of flying friends.
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(Shutterstock)
(Shutterstock)

The Playbook: How to get your office to let you work from home

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON DEC 04, 2020 06:47 PM IST
Lockdown restrictions have lifted but the pandemic is still on. You reasons to prefer your home to a cold cubicle may vary, but they’ll need delicate approaches to become a reality.
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You’ll love them yeah, yeah, yeah. Reena & Lindsay’s Saturday night gigs play The Beatles, Dolly Parton, Elvis and stuff your uncle hums. But there’s a dash of contemporary sounds too.(Image courtesy Reena & Lindsay)
You’ll love them yeah, yeah, yeah. Reena & Lindsay’s Saturday night gigs play The Beatles, Dolly Parton, Elvis and stuff your uncle hums. But there’s a dash of contemporary sounds too.(Image courtesy Reena & Lindsay)

Click hear: This Mumbai duo beat pandemic blues with radio-era live gigs

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON NOV 21, 2020 02:03 PM IST
‘The next song goes out to...’. Reena & Lindsay’s revival of AIR’s Saturday Date is giving house-bound music lovers worldwide a way to rewind to a simpler, groovier time
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(HT Illustration: Malay Karmakar)
(HT Illustration: Malay Karmakar)

Clocking out: Is India ready to disrupt the workweek?

By Rachel Lopez | Hindustan Times
UPDATED ON NOV 13, 2020 08:07 PM IST
Around the world, the pandemic and lockdowns have forced companies to break away from the Monday-to-Friday, 9-to-5 template. In a world of remote working, four-day weeks, uncapped leave and free therapy, see how work and play are being reinvented for the future.
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