Coolest News of 2017


By Newmanity Team

Earlier this month, we asked our community to share their favorite positive news from 2017. Newmanity’s team members also contributed and, on this post, we bring you our top positive news of 2017. Because not all was bad this year and it’s always worth remembering the good stuff happening out there!


Paul McCartney’s 1965 Christmas mixtape has surfaced

This year, someone managed to get their hands on a recording of a custom vinyl mixtape that Paul McCartney put together for his fellow Beatles band members in 1965. Sir Paul McCartney prepared it as a Christmas gift and it included sampled songs (by The Rolling Stones, The Beach Boys, Martha and the Vandellas, and Elvis Presley), original sketches, and avant-garde loops, while McCartney himself played the role of a radio DJ throughout the mix. Thankfully, this person uploaded the audio segment to Youtube so we can all enjoy it here!


Student Invents Device That Captures Tailpipe Pollution So He Can Turn it Into Ink

It was during a trip home to Mumbai, India, that this MIT student noticed that his t-shirt was accumulating something that seemed like dirt. Anirudh Sharma realized that this was air pollution in the form of black particles released from the exhaust of vehicles. Back to MIT, he set out to help solve this issue and after years of research and development, Sharma’s startup Graviky Labs was able to develop a technology that can be attached to exhaust systems of diesel generator chimneys to capture particulate matter. The particles are then treated and turned into ink, called Air-Ink, for artists around the world. Not only does this help solve a serious health issue, that there is a practical use for the end product! Know more here


Kerala vows to provide free WiFi to all state citizens after declaring it a basic human right

Also this year, the Indian state of Kerala has declared that internet is a basic human right and that all citizens should have access to WiFi. It was the Finance Minister who made the announcement and said that the government would be providing free internet access across the entire state. Thanks to this decision, more than 30 million people in Kerala will get free internet access, through an investment of 1 billion Rupees (approximately €14 million ). Read more here.


French employees win ‘right to disconnect’

Each year, more and more employees report being dissatisfied with their work-life balance. A study in the UK pointed to 20%, with 43% of the respondents reporting reading or sending work-related emails outside of office hours. With the aim of ensuring respect for rest periods and balance between work and family and personal life, the ‘right to disconnect’ law came into force on January 1st in France, requiring companies with more than 50 employees to draw up a charter of good conduct, detailing when staff should not send or respond to emails. Learn more here.


Genius School Replaces Detention With Meditation

A school in Baltimore, Maryland, has come up with an original way incentivise children to behave in class. Instead of sending them to detention, they send kids to a Mindful Moment Room for meditation. This meditation room was introduced in partnership with the Holistic Life Foundation, a non-profit organization that promotes wellness, and it is filled with lamps, plush pillows, and bean bags. In there, students are taught deep breathing exercises, meditation, and mindfulness, in order to calm them, reduce their stress and help them deal with any anger or anxiety. See more here.


Parents Now Spend Twice as Much Time With Their Children as 50 Years Ago

More and more parents are spending time with their children, as shown by a study published by the Journal of Marriage and Family, reporting that parents in western countries are spending twice as much time with their kids as they did 50 years ago. The study looked at families from several countries: Italy, the United States, Canada, Germany, Britain, the Netherlands, Denmark, Spain, and Slovenia – which all showed remarkable improvement between 1965 and 2012. While it is estimated that in 1965 the average mother would spend 54 minutes with her children per day, in 2012, that number jumped to 105 minutes, according to the Economist. And even though fathers still spend less time with their kids than mothers, the average time also increased from 16 to 59 minutes per day. Read more here


Kenyan Schoolgirls Invent App to Stop Female Genital Mutilation

Five teenage girls, calling themselves “The Restorers”, took a stand to end female genital mutilation (FGM) with their innovative smartphone app. The i-Cut app is a program that allows girls to call for help, seek assistance and report abuse to law enforcement organizations. The app connects the user with the legal, medical, and therapeutic counseling and resources required. The Restorers were invited to attend the Technovation Challenge in Silicon Valley, California, and became the only Africans to participate. Know more here.

As you can see, good things are always happening, and you will find them if you just pay attention. We hope to bring you an even more amazing list at the end of 2018!

What about you? Would you add any other news to this list? What made you smile in 2017?