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OGN Tuesday

Updated: May 25, 2022

Inspiring collection of positive news nuggets to perk up the day.

Good news for people of colour: Jessica Watkins is first such woman on the ISS
Jessica Watkins | Credit: Nasa
Boldly Going

Jessica Watkins makes history as the first black woman on the International Space Station. "Growing up and throughout my career it's been really important to see people who look like me or have my background or similar experiences. That I'm able to do that for others, for other young girls or young people of color, I'm grateful for the opportunity to return the favor," Watkins said. She is a geologist and will perform scientific experiments and maintenance while in orbit.

Smile Please

Archeologists in China have found toothbrushes more than a thousand years old – and they are remarkably similar to modern ones. They had the same shape, although were made of bone, not plastic. And instead of the nylon brushes of today’s equivalents, the ancient ones had hog bristles. There were different varieties, just like today. There were even double-brush ones, with bristles on the front and the back of the toothbrush head. The ancient toothbrushes were discovered in Yangzhou, Jiangsu Province.

Free Transport

The Portuguese city of Lisbon has approved free public transportation for young and elderly residents - for those over 65 and for students up to age 23. The mayor of Lisbon said this is a “historic day”, stating that only two or three other European cities have approved such an initiative to fight climate change. In the future, the city may extend free public transportation to other groups as well.


Obscure Word of the Day: Interrobang - a printed punctuation mark (‽), available only in some typefaces, designed to combine the question mark (?) and the exclamation point (!).


German automaker Volkswagen has 'sold out' of battery-electric vehicles in the United States and Europe for 2022, according to Financial Times. Volkswagen, the world’s second-largest electric vehicle manufacturer, has sold more than 99,000 electric models from its various brands, such as Porsche, Audi, and Škoda, in the first quarter of 2022. The market leader, Tesla, has delivered more than three times that amount in the same period with around 310,000. VW Chairman Herbert Diess said the company's order backlog in western Europe was at 300,000 electric vehicles. A problem. But a nice problem.

Very Brave

Two Russian journalists working for a popular pro-Kremlin website (with 200 million monthly readers) filled it with anti-war articles yesterday in a rare act of dissent as the country celebrated the Soviet Union’s victory over Nazi Germany. The articles on called President Vladimir Putin a “pitiful paranoid dictator” and accused him of waging “the bloodiest war of the 21st century”. “We had to do it today. We wanted to remind everyone what our grandfathers really fought for on this beautiful Victory Day – for peace,” said 30-year-old Egor Polyakov, one of the two journalists. The other was Alexandra Miroshnikova. The articles, of course, have since been taken down, but can be accessed through a web archive tool. We salute you both and, if we could get our hands on some Putin Huylo, would drink your health!

Caltech Research

Following the good news that Stanford is creating a $1bn new school focusing on climate change, it's also wonderful to hear that the California Institute of Technology has broken ground on an environmental sustainability research center that will pursue solutions to challenges including water, energy, food, and waste. The groundbreaking for the Resnick Sustainability Center, was made possible by a $750 million gift from Stewart and Lynda Resnick.

Quote of the Day

"Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail."

Ralph Waldo Emerson

On this Day

10 May 1994: Nelson Mandela became president of South Africa.


Dive in Deeper

Travel Mood Booster

Bulgaria: a cultural melting pot with Greek, Slavic, Ottoman, and Persian influences, it has a rich heritage of traditional dance, music, costumes, and crafts.


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