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Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-28

The Seattle Seahawks Signed A Player Just To Immediately Cut Him. The Reason Why Is Amazing It’s good to read a story of generosity—not greed—in professional sports.

This 'Little Hero' Saved His 10-Year-Old Neighbor From Being Abducted In An Incredible Way We tell our karate students that, when faced with a “bad guy,” they should scream and fight. This story affirms that.

99-year-old Maine woman receives college diploma 75 years later The cynic in me wonders why she didn’t pay for the diploma in those intervening years. But her life-long love of learning made my day.

Daily TED Talk

A Circle of Caring (3 min) His attire may take you aback, but I think it’s part of the point—and he jokes about it. A seemingly simple example of love, but not so simple in reality.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-27

Missed several days. Two were due to trying to recover my wife’s failing hard drive. The other was Memorial Day off.

Solar-Powered Pump Makers Want to Bring Clean Water to Millions Who Need It The Austrian company is crowd-funding a way to make the pump’s parts easier to obtain. DIY plans are available.

A Simple, Elegant Invention That Draws Water From Air The WarkaWater looks like modern art, and gathers up to 26 gallons of drinkable water a day.

Human ‘suspended animation’ trials to start this month This might not be good news to everyone, but it is to those who would die during surgery without it. And, really, it’s totally cool.

Daily TED Talk

Try something new for 30 days (5min) “Is there something you've always meant to do, wanted to do, but just ... haven't? Matt Cutts suggests: Try it for 30 days. This short, lighthearted talk offers a neat way to think about setting and achieving goals.”

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-21

Firefighter Posts Selfie After Battling Blaze, Gets Thousands of Grateful Messages on VIral Pic The fire isn’t good news, but hearing something positive about it is.

China Unveils the Future of Travel. Magnetic Levitation Trains Could Reach Speeds of 1,800 MPH I don’t know. Sounds a little slow to me.

Daily TED Talk

A skateboard, with a boost (5min) “Imagine an electric vehicle that can get you to work — or anywhere in a six-mile radius — quickly, without traffic frustrations or gasoline. Now imagine you can pick it up and carry it with you. Yes, this souped-up skateboard could change the face of morning commutes.”

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-20

Texas High Schoolers Create Hand for Toddler It might seem that all they’d have to do is take the adult blueprint and make it smaller, but I suspect the differences go far beyond size.

Random Strangers Freestyle Together, Show us ‘The Power Music Can Have on the Soul’ Some people think this was staged, but I think if it had then the result would have been more varied and complex. This is just some guys who started spontaneously jamming and enjoying the groove.

Possibly the Largest School of Mobular Rays Caught on Film It’s a video heavy day, continuing with this footage of tens of thousands of rays off the coast of Baha. Why not fly?

Daily TED Talk

Haunting Photos of Polar Ice “Photographer Camille Seaman shoots icebergs, showing the world the complex beauty of these massive, ancient chunks of ice. Dive in to her photo slideshow, ‘The Last Iceberg.’”

Monday, May 19, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-19

A Big Break Realized Amidst Fluorescent Lights and Slurpee Machines Terry Boring said the right thing and the right time to the right person. The punch line is the difference it made.

This fifth-grader raised $200,000 to clean up the Gulf oil spill Twelve –year-old Olivia Bouler asked the Audubon Society how she could use her art skills to help after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill.

Kid with Autism Confronts His Bullies in Front of the Whole Class “I see you guys laughing over there.” That part alone chilled me.

Daily TED Talk

High School Training Ground (3min) Malcom London’s slam poem about high school. This hits hard. “Homework is stressful, but when you go home every day and your home is work, you don't want to pick up any assignments.”

Friday, May 16, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-16

Today’s posts have consistently long headlines. Is this a result of short attention span, that we have to fit almost the entire story into one sentence?

How a water bottle gave birth to a whole new world of self-healing products A new polymer that’s “super strong, flexible and self-healing.” Could replace aluminum (great for the US, which imports all of ours).

New Mattress Lets You Cuddle Without Your Arm Going Numb This is on the lighter side of “good news,” but might be valuable to those who want or need to sleep on their sides—with or without cuddling partners.

‘Speechless’ Teacher Left Crying After Mystery Patrons Cover Tab For Students With Autism More anonymous goodness. I love it when people essentially say, “You know, we’ve got the money, let’s give it away.”

Daily TED Talk

Love Letters to Strangers (5 min) “Hannah Brencher's mother always wrote her letters. So when she felt herself bottom into depression after college, she did what felt natural — she wrote love letters and left them for strangers to find. The act has become a global initiative, The World Needs More Love Letters, which rushes handwritten letters to those in need of a boost.”

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-15

Anonymous benefactor leaves car on paralysed mother’s front lawn I love stories about anonymous good deeds.

New Patlz Students Find $40K in a Couch They faced an ethical dilemma and didn’t take the easy way out. The positive lesson is that kids will try to do the right thing and try to figure out what “the right thing” means. The life lesson is: don’t save your money in a couch.

Daily TED Talk

The hidden light of Afghanistan  Beautiful photography from Monika Bulaj, walking in Afghanistan for 20 years:

“Behind the destruction, I found a soul of places. I met humble people. I heard their prayer and ate their bread. Then I have been walking East for 20 years -- from Eastern Europe to Central Asia -- through the Caucasus Mountains, Middle East, North Africa, Russia. And I ever met more humble people. And I shared their bread and their prayer. This is why I went to Afghanistan.”

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-14

World’s oldest sperm discovered And it’s huge! Relatively speaking.

Pharmacist’s Intuition Saves Customer’s LIfe A good reminder to sometimes follow your gut even if it might turn out to be nothing. Because it might also be something important.

After Tweet, Saudis Flock to Visit Paralyzed Man in Hospital This is wonderful, I agree. My only criticisms are: 1) did the patient’s family start visiting again, and 2) are other patients now being visited more? I worry that these huge expressions of doing right replace everyday behaviors. That, by being part of a movement, people feel off the hook for daily good behavior.

Daily TED Talk

A life lesson from a volunteer firefighter (5min) Often our egos mask reality. A great story of doing good, well and funnily told.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-13

Cuddling Babies: Hospital Volunteers Show the Power of Human Touch It’s no news to me that cuddling babies is healthy. There was a (dreadful) experiment a century ago that showed babies who aren’t touched will die. More positively, my wife’s mother was the first healing touch therapist to be employed full time by a hospital, in its premature births ward.

The little light that helped one man raise over $1.5 million A solar-charged, collapsible lamp for poor nations and also for campers and others “off the grid.”

Mom Jumps Out Of Burning Building To Save Her Son... 'He Mattered Way More Than I Did' She jumped out of a second story apartment, and may never walk again. Is she a hero? She doesn’t use that word.

Bubblegum That Cleans Your Teeth--For Kids Where There Are No Dentists I’ve never heard of Xylitol, a sweetener that’s beneficial for dental health, but it was discovered over a hundred years ago. It also decreases middle ear infection in children.

Daily TED Talk

A happy song about global warming, from Jill Sobule. (5 min) “Manhattan in January,” cute and funny.

Monday, May 12, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-12

Honest Toilet Cleaner Gets to Keep $80,000 I love it when doing the right thing gets rewarded.

This Soldier Waged A 10-Year Campaign To Transform The Life Of A Disfigured Child Wayne Ingram raised money to help Stefan Savic, “born with a rare Tessier facial cleft, a disfigurement that split his nose in half and forced his eyes several inches apart….”

Daily TED Talk

A new missions for veterans – disaster relief (5 min) This is a fantastic effort for veterans to retain the purpose, community and self-worth they experienced while serving in the military. Not just valuable, but literally critical to many’s survival. A striking talk by Jake Wood.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-09

In Stanton, Iowa, human chain of 400+ passes books from old library to new Apparently it took longer than expected because the kids--and adults--kept looking at the books saying "I've read this," or "I want to read this."

South Mississippi GED graduates' persistence earns them the cap and gown Stories of several GED recipients. Well done!

This Dad Built A Roller Coaster In His Backyard For His Son For A Very Cool Reason The "cool reason" seems to be "because I could," but he maintains it was about applied mathematics.

Longwood University makes dream come true for dying father, graduating daughter Great story about a university bending the rules for good reason.

Daily TED Talk
The Power of Vulnerability (20min) A fantastic talk from a researcher who discovered that her job--and life--of "control and predict" was at odds with her study's results. Illuminating and valuable science on how to live "whole heartedly."

Read more here:

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-08

Arizona will get non-stop clean energy from hot air drafts More alternative energy news coming out of Arizona. In this case, use a little water to create downdrafts from the ever-present heat, leading to continuous energy output.

K9 finds missing autistic boy standing in creek The boy was lost, and hard to find in thick woods, but the police dog went right to him.

Blind Pole Vaulter Soars into State Meet Charlotte Brown is legally blind. When vaulting she sees black. This is a fantastic story of persistence, cleverness and support.

This Artist Turned A Major Street In Bristol Into A Huge Water Slide What fun! Bristol is closing this street the first Sunday of each month to allow doing something different on it. This crowd-sourced water slide was the first project.

The Entire History Of Western Civilization From Ancient Greece To Today Has Occurred While This Axe Has Existed That is one old axe. 3600 years old.

Daily TED Talk
Print Your Own Medicine Chemist Lee Cronin is working on a 3D printer that, instead of objects, is able to print molecules. An exciting potential long-term application: printing your own medicine using chemical inks.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-07

Beethoven's 9th Symphony Premiers 190 years ago today, the "Chorale" symphony premiered, composed when Beethoven was completely deaf.

Man With Down Syndrome Fulfills Life Goal, Sings National Anthem At Red Sox Game The title says it all. There's a five minute video of Michael Mullins singing the anthem. Such joy!

This Guy Digs Through Trash To Create Something We Often Take For Granted Gregory Kloehn builds moveable micro houses for the homeless from available scrap.

Daily TED Talk
The Demise of Guys? Psychologist Philip Zimbardo asks, "Why are boys struggling?" He shares some stats (lower graduation rates, greater worries about intimacy and relationships) and suggests a few reasons — and challenges the TED community to think about solutions. Funny, informative. The comments include both support and challenges to Zimbardo's talk.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-06

Giant solar farm uses molten salt to keep power coming This Arizona solar station stores energy for use when the sun isn't available.

Chemist Turns Software Developer After Son's Cancer Diagnosis Brian Shaw and his wife discovered evidence of a specific cancer in their baby's earliest pictures (just a few days old). Now he wants cameras to check for it automatically.

Daily TED Talk
The discovery that could rewrite physics (5min) "What they found on Monday was evidence of the ringing of the space-time of the early universe." A quick explanation of the recent confirmation of the Big Bang inflationary universe theory.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Curated Good News 2014-05-05

Scruffy’s Story Captured a Nation and Saved Hundreds of Dogs From Execution (The Tuesday Dog)This is an old story, but I read this book in the last year and enjoyed it. A stray dog has Lassie-like adventures, meeting both good and bad strangers.

Family Who Lost Dog In Superstorm Sandy Gets Huge Surprise At Adoption Shelter A more recent dog story, also true, also wonderful.

Rivers' garbageman named CNN Hero of the Year This guy's cleaning up the Mississippi--and other rivers. He was awarded $250K by CNN. Best part of the article: "During the show, Pregracke pledged to spread some of his Hero of the Year money to the rest of the top 10 Heroes: 'I've met so many great people today, the other Heroes, and I'm really moved by all their stories and all the things they do around the world. ... I'm going to give 10 grand to each of them, because they're awesome.'

Daily TED Talk
Eric Lewis: Chaos and harmony on Piano (5min)  I could joke about not knowing if he's playing wrong notes, but I have a background in music: even any wrong notes would be right for the piece. Listen to the thunderclaps, the rain, the wind!