OGN Sunday

Today's round up of positive news.

  • A decade ago they were the buccaneering capitals of the 21st century, haunts of modern-day Blackbeards armed with Kalashnikovs rather than cutlasses. Today, the good news is that Somalia's once-lawless pirate towns are aiming for a more honest future - as freight ports. Three of the most notorious pirate havens - Hobyo, Eyl and Garacad - are all now earmarked for port construction projects, which will see them cater to the shipping trade they once preyed upon. It's hoped the ports will finally bring prosperity to the so-called 'pirate coast', which lies on one of the most remote and impoverished parts of Somalia.

  • A team of Nepalese climbers including a former Gurkha soldier, Nirmal Purja, has claimed one of mountaineering's last great prizes by completing the first winter ascent of K2. The team reached the peak of the world's second highest mountain yesterday afternoon. The 8,611m (28,251ft) peak, located on the Pakistan-China border, is notorious for its perilous climbing conditions and until today had been the only one of 14 worldwide peaks above 8,000m to never be conquered in the winter.

  • World's most exciting cycling projects: The recent Bicycle Architecture Biennial in Amsterdam featured forward-thinking, creative and quirky infrastructure projects aimed at encouraging people to turn to peddle-power. Some of them are amazing!

  • Take inspiration from 10 year old Corey Williams. He's raised thousands of pounds to buy tablet computers for hospital patients in Wales who are unable to see visitors - and he's done it in a very novel way - by carrying sacks of potatoes two miles up one Rhondda mountain, cycling up a second, and running up a third. He aimed to raise £1,000, but smashed that target on GoFundMe and is now at nearly £3,500. His father, told BBC Wales that Corey's determination was "inspirational". He added: "He was crying half way up and he said 'I can't give up, I'll let people down otherwise'. That was mind-blowing."

  • Ride-hailing company Uber is expanding its electric vehicle and hybrid ride option to over 1,400 new cities in North America. Uber has pledged that all taxis available through its app will be electric by 2030 in US, Canadian and European cities.

  • Johan 'N0tail' Sundstein, a 27 year old Dane, is the highest-earning e-sports player in the world, having taken more than $7.4m (£5.4m) in prize money to date. He lives in his new 17 bedroom mansion in Lisbon that he and his team have adapted to training for, and competing in, high stakes tournaments remotely. Probably not a good idea to tell your kids this...

  • Ways to cultivate peace during a work day: Never fear, Superhero. You are not alone. We live in a relentlessly demanding world. Of course, you are more than capable of rising to the occasion, but it's important to remember to cultivate moments of peace so you don't compromise your greater sense of well-being.

  • The team at OGN Towers all laughed when we were reminded of this great Edinburgh fringe one-liner: “I like to imagine the guy who invented the umbrella was going to call it the ‘brella’. But he hesitated.” But can't decide if it's funnier than: “I have two boys, 5 and 6. We’re no good at naming things in our house.” Tell us if you've got any great one liners?

  • Saudia Arabia to build zero carbon city: The unconventional city will feature zero cars, zero streets, and zero carbon emissions. Could this help provide a blueprint for other new cities around the world?

  • Discover some talented young painters including Michael Chance, Joana Galego, Melissa Kime and more in this virtual pop-up show in a West End shop. Carousel Next Door, London until 31 January.

  • One upside of lockdown is that Brits have rekindled their love affair with literature, with some research claiming 35 percent of people have read more during the crisis. And, in even better news, according to the Booksellers Association, the number of independent booksellers has grown to 967 bookshops in the UK and Ireland - the highest since 2013. If you want to support them further (and give Amazon a miss) independent bookstores have clubbed together to create UKbookshop

  • Every year tech companies descend on Las Vegas to show off their wares at the vast Consumer Electronics Show (although, this year, it was staged online). What's our favourite idea for 2021? Easy. If you're a board game fan, you'll almost certainly be tempted too by The Infinity Game Table.

  • Trump shares 'special drawings' while voicing his views on fisherman wages and other vital issues. Don't watch this if (a) you're against having a good chuckle and (b) you're a Trump fan.


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