OGN Tuesday

Updated: Jan 17

Today's round up of positive news nuggets to brighten the day day.

  • Stuck indoors for lockdown? This witty online show suggests it’s a bit like being James Stewart in Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window. In this cinema classic, Stewart plays an ace photographer trapped in his apartment with a broken leg. Like Stewart’s curious voyeur watching his neighbours, you are tempted here to “spy” on seductive artworks by Jeff Wall, Ellen Altfest, Gillian Carnegie and more. Good fun. White Cube online.

  • Scientists have discovered a potential cure for diabetes: Scientists at Canada's Alberta University just cured diabetes in mice, opening the floodgates for research on adapting this cure for humans.

  • The good news about vaccines continues! Now the vaccine by AstraZeneca and Oxford University can be added to the successful trial results from Pfizer and Moderna, so we now have three options. AstraZeneca's has the significant advantages of being cheaper and much easier to store and distribute.

  • Yoda returned to space from whence he came last week. The galaxy's cutest sage hitched a ride on a SpaceX craft to the International Space Station. His business there is unknown, but the NASA astronauts on board with him said he's a welcome source of joy and inspiration - something they hope to be for all of us back on planet Earth.

  • Thank you to an OGN reader for sending this to us: "When I was a proof-reader, I shared with my colleagues this example to illustrate how writing can skew things, based on gender: A professor wrote on the blackboard, “Woman without her man is nothing.” The students were then instructed to insert the proper punctuation. The men wrote, “Woman, without her man, is nothing.” The women wrote, “Woman! Without her, man is nothing.”

  • Britain has thrown its weight behind a new global agreement to tackle the plastic pollution crisis, which Lord Goldsmith said would go 'far beyond' existing international agreements. The minister said he believes it's time to start negotiations on a UN treaty on plastics similar to the Paris agreement on the climate crisis.

  • Invenergy is investing $1.6bn to build America's largest solar farm in Texas. It will be constructed in five phases over the next three years, with each phase commencing operation upon completion, and be fully operational in 2023. It will then produce enough energy to power nearly 300,000 homes.

  • Previously unknown drawings by one of Britain’s most important artists, John Constable, have been discovered hidden among a jumble of letters and poems collected in a family scrapbook made over the course of the late 18th and 19th centuries.

  • You probably heard that Dolly Parton generously donated $1m to vaccine research, contributing towards Moderna's vaccine discovery. Well, now we learn that's she's the first ever country music star to be credited in the New England Journal of Medicine. "I just felt so proud to have been part of that little seed money that will hopefully grow into something great and help to heal this world," she told the BBC, beaming. Cheers to you, Dolly.

  • Faced by inaction on national and state level, San Francisco has decided to go it alone and tackle the huge wealth gap. From 2021, the city's new law will levy an extra 0.1 percent tax on companies that pay their chief executive more than 100-times the the median of their workforce, and use the money to improve the housing and healthcare provision for the city’s poorest people.

  • From an accident to a free car to an orphanage, there is no end to the ripple effect kindness can have: Looking to unload a car that had belonged to his late grandmother, Cory Schneider decided to pay it forward. "1997 Ford Crown Victoria - white - around 100k miles, almost all driven by grandma,” Schneider posted on Reddit last week. “I want to help someone who needs it with a free vehicle.” From the messages that flooded in, he picked 31-year-old Mark Selby, a substitute teacher who’d been living with his mother while recovering from a car accident that had totaled his own vehicle. “When I first got the call, I felt like I was going to cry,” Selby told the Tampa Bay Times. Then came another assist. Local entrepreneur Marcel Gruber slipped $400 into the glove box to cover registration and other associated costs. Selby’s dream is to one day build an orphanage.

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