While Boston didn't get several big-name events it bid on, competing for them changed the city's development.

Globe staff photoillustration

While Boston didn't get several big-name events it bid on, competing for them changed the city's development.

The 1976 World Expo in Boston would have created a whole new swath of Boston from the sea.

Boston Society of Architects

The 1976 World Expo in Boston would have created a whole new swath of Boston from the sea.

Boston didn’t get NASA’s Manned Spacecraft Center in the 1960s.

NASA

Boston didn’t get NASA’s Manned Spacecraft Center in the 1960s.

Event locations for the 1980 alternative Olympics that never were.

Boston Mayor's Committee

Event locations for the 1980 Freedom Games that never were.

Olympic dreams: How Boston was shaped by the trophies it didn’t win

The city tried and failed to host the 1980 alterna-Olympics, the 1976 World Expo, and NASA Mission Control. They ended up changing the landscape anyway.By Christopher Klein

Uncommon Knowledge

Why you should beware of names like ‘A1 Plumbing’

And more surprising insights from the social sciences.

Brainiac

Does living in Boston make people unhappy?

And more recent highlights from the Ideas blog.

Books

Marc Songini (left) traces the violent deeds of Joseph “The Animal” Barb-oza (above, in 1965) and other mob-sters in his new book, “Boston Mob.”

Book Review

‘Boston Mob’ by Marc Songini

In “Boston Mob: The Rise and Fall of the New England Mob and Its Most Notorious Killer,’’ Songini recounts the saga of organized crime in Boston and Providence in the 1950s and 1960s.