OGN Thursday

Updated: Mar 16

Another lovely day of uplifting, good news snippets.


  • Europe’s oldest person survives Covid and will celebrate her 117th birthday this week. French nun Sister Andrée tested positive in her retirement home in Toulon but had no symptoms. She told Var-Matin newspaper: “I didn’t even realise I had it.”

  • In 1927 in Belgium, 29 people gathered for what has been called “the most intelligent photo of all time". It's a simple snapshot taken at one of the most exciting moments in scientific history and includes more brilliant scientists than ever before, or since. A remarkable moment.

  • Federal legislation has been introduced to create a tax incentive for the purchase of electric bicycles in the US, saving buyers 30 percent. That’s thanks to the Electric Bicycle Incentive Kickstart for the Environment (E-BIKE) Act. A clever name devised by the little known DSA (Department for Snappy Acronyms). In the UK, if you buy through your employer’s Cycle to Work scheme, you can save up to 42 percent of the total cost of the bike and accessories.

  • Imagine you're a 17 year old who's just landed a summer internship at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. That's what happened to a lucky guy called Wolf Cukier, and he was tasked with examining data collected by the Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite (TESS). He got even luckier when, on day three of his internship, he discovered a new planet. It has the snappy name of TOI-1338B, and joins a roster of several other circumbinary planets (orbiting two stars) known to NASA.

  • Natural woodland sculptures delight hikers: Most of us have started doing things to help our physical and mental health that we never did before the pandemic struck. For one Canadian woman, this involved going into the woods near her home in British Columbia with some twine, clippers and an idea.

  • Grocery store employees have kept us fed and orchestrated safe shopping conditions throughout the pandemic, but often don’t get the recognition that other frontline workers do, like nurses and doctors. The City of Oakland now requires that grocery stores pay their staff an additional $5 per hour for the duration of the pandemic.

  • Great one for your next pub quiz or for showing off at parties: Joining a handful of other US states, Massachusetts now has a state dinosaur....

  • In good news for the environment, the future of a proposed coalmine in Cumbria, in north west England, has been thrown into doubt after an abrupt U-turn by the county council, which will now reconsider planning permission for the mine in the light of the government’s greenhouse gas targets. Hallelujah!

  • Deep space food challenge: NASA is offering foodies and boffins $500,000 to find ways for astronauts to make their own dinners on the Moon, and beyond.

  • Man buys expensive bike for £80, realising it's clearly been stolen. But his motive was kind-hearted: he wanted to try and get the £1,350 bike back to its rightful owner, so posted on local Facebook groups. The grateful owner got in touch and the good Samaritan posted: 'Happy days!'

  • Busker on Boston Subway: Subway performer began playing Sweet Caroline at the red line station of Park Street. And the whole crowd joined in!