Only Good News Nuggets

Thursday's uplifting collection of eclectic good news nuggets to get the day off to a bright start.

  • Electric cars are great, but it’s going to be a long time before any of them on the market today become true classics. But a firm called Lunaz Group, which specializes in restoring vintage cars, has begun producing a bespoke, electrified version of Aston Martin’s iconic DB6. The cars, which will surely cost a pretty penny (price on application only, sorry) undergo an entire restoration and re-engineering process to accommodate a battery and electric drivetrain. But you’ll also want modern conveniences like air conditioning and Apple CarPlay, so those are also added. Lunaz says its clients can make other special requests to create a DB6 that’s truly one-of-a-kind (while retaining its classic, unmistakable style, of course).

  • The oldest known footprints of pre-humans have been found on the Mediterranean island of Crete and are at least six million years old, says an international team of researchers. The footprints from fossilized beach sediments were found near the west Cretan village of Trachilos. Using geophysical and micropaleontological methods, researchers have now dated them to 6.05 million years before the present day, making them the oldest direct evidence of a human-like foot used for walking. The tracks are almost 2.5 million years older than the tracks attributed to Australopithecus afarensis (Lucy) from Laetoli in Tanzania.

  • Gigawatt: The solar energy term you need to know about. A gigawatt is a unit of measurement of electrical power. For some context, a gigawatt is equal to one billion watts. Here's a more practical measurement, though: One gigawatt is enough energy to power about 750,000 homes. Simple!

  • A record sum of £8.4 million has been raised by Kiltwalk Kindness this year. £2.2 million of this total was raised during the first physical Kiltwalk in two years, which saw around 4,000 tartan-clad walkers stride from Glasgow Green to Dumbarton. Sir Tom Hunter of The Hunter Foundation said, "at a time when those in need really needed help, the Kiltwalk community went beyond the call of duty".

  • In Japan, scientists have created 3D-printed Wagyu beef. Produced using bioprinters and bovine stem cells, it took scientists three to four weeks to generate a cubic centimetre of cultured meat. While that may seem like a long time, the techniques could see dramatic advances and applications in food shortage responses and human medicine.

  • Good news for bibliophiles: a study in the journal Dementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders has found that those who grew up surrounded by books perform better on cognitive tests than their peers. The data, which was drawn from over 8,000 participants aged 65 and over, suggests that exposure to books in childhood can help protect against dementia in later life.

  • Wouldn't it be good news if the spike in oil and gas prices were a blessing in disguise? It might hasten the switch to a zero-carbon world sooner than expected.

  • Hats off to William Shatner, who has issued an impassioned plea for humanity to look after the planet and the beautiful "comforter of blue" that surrounds us after he became the oldest person in space aged 90. In an extraordinary convergence of science fiction and reality the actor, who played Captain James T. Kirk in Star Trek, was the first nonagenarian to make such a trip, atop a rocket launched by Jeff Bezos's Blue Origin space tourism company. After his capsule touched down in the Texas desert, Mr Shatner said: "It was unbelievable, unbelievable, the little things, weightlessness...but to see the blue cover whip by you and now you're staring into blackness, that's the thing."

  • Fun Fact: The city with the longest name is Krung Thep Mahanakhon Amon Rattanakosin Mahinthara Yuthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udomratchaniwet Mahasathan Amon Piman Awatan Sathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukam Prasit. Rather than going by this 21-word name, the city goes by its widely known nickname: Bangkok. This true name is the longest name of any place on earth.

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Hilarious!

Another 'best of' from the hilarious BBC show: Funny Talking Animals. It's good to laugh!