Some tasty bite-sized chunks of positive news to perk up the day.
Mammoth Tusk Tool
A roughly 35,000-year-old woolly mammoth tusk found in Germany in 2015 was used by early humans as a tool to make rope, scientists say. In an experiment using a replica of the artefact, a small team of researchers successfully created a rope made from cattail reeds. Their rope-making experiences and analyses, published in Science Advances, refute earlier beliefs that the ivory was a piece of artwork, or served other non-utilitarian purposes. Some researchers previously believed the odd ivory baton was ritualistic and used as a noisemaker, sceptre, wand or piece of art.
Super Bowl Prices
$7 million: The cost of a 30-second advertising spot at the Super Bowl, which takes place on Sunday. Last year's game was the most watched programme in US history, with an average audience of 115.1 million. If you’re hoping to score some last-minute Super Bowl LVIII tickets to see the Chiefs take on the 49ers, your big game budget better be as stacked as some ad agencies, with prices rising above $10k-per-ticket - the highest on record.
On Par With Einstein
After receiving the same IQ score as Einstein and Stephen Hawking on a test, a young immigrant to the UK joined a rather exclusive club and hopes to make new friends. Mensa is an international group for high-IQ individuals founded in 1947. The 'club' welcomes children and adults in the 98th percentile of IQs worldwide in order to share ideas and help them reach their full potential. 12-year-old Cyrus Leung was born in Hong Kong, and was accepted into The Mensa Society after passing his test with 160, just two points short of the highest score.
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Voters in Paris have approved an increase in parking fees for SUVs. Vehicles weighing over 1.6 metric tons will have hourly parking fees tripled as the city seeks to become a more bikeable and pedestrian-friendly. Paris Mayor Anne Hidalgo proposed the increased parking rates, noting that these larger vehicles “threaten our health and our planet” as well as take up too much space. The approved proposal means that parking fees for SUVs will now total 18 euros (about $19) per hour for the first two hours, then increases. Non-residents parking in central Paris could pay 225 euros (about $243) for parking for 6 hours.
In the United States, 21.3 million people have signed up for an Obamacare plan during the enrolment period this year, including more than five million people - about a fourth - who did so for the first time. Four in five of all customers were able to find health care insurance for $10 or less per month after subsidies, says CMS.
Pygmy Slow Loris
The Memphis Zoo has announced the good news of the birth of a rare and endangered Pygmy slow loris. The cute little creature, scientifically known as Nycticebus pygmaeus, is native to the forested regions of Southeast Asia. Their faces are individually patterned with light and dark fur, usually including circles around their eyes that almost resemble clown makeup. In fact, the name "loris" comes from an old Dutch word for clown. As the little one continues to grow, keepers will eventually select a name that reflects its personality, says the zoo.
Dubai is full of eye-catching skyscrapers but the newly completed One Za'abeel, by Japan's Nikken Sekkei, is sure to stand out, even there. The building takes the form of two adjacent towers which support a horizontal bridge section that forms the world's longest cantilever. According to engineer WSP, the two skyscrapers were actually purposefully built with a very slight lean to them, so that when the Link was lifted up and welded into place, its additional weight gradually returned the towers to a straight upright position. "The Link's 66-meter cantilever is now the world's longest cantilever, providing visitors with the illusion of floating in mid-air," explained Nikken Sekkei. The Link is topped by an infinity swimming pool and viewing points.
"Good news is rare these days, and every glittering ounce of it should be cherished and hoarded and worshipped and fondled like a priceless diamond." Hunter S. Thompson
On This Day
7 February 1964: The musical British Invasion began when the Beatles landed in New York City, and two nights later, as Beatlemania stormed America, their performance on The Ed Sullivan Show was watched by 73 million viewers.
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