Good things from 2017

If global leadership was sending you into a blind panic last year, you may be pleased to hear of a few good things that happened globally ...

1. Cancer deaths have dropped by 25 per cent in the United States since 1991, saving more than 2 million lives. Breast cancer deaths have fallen by 39 per cent, saving the lives of 322,600 women.

2. In October, new research from the Centres for Disease Control revealed that between 2000 and 2016, the measles vaccine saved 20.4 million lives.

3. In July, 1.5 million people in the Indian state of Madhya Pradesh set a new Guinness record for reforestation by planting more than 67 million trees in 12 hours.


4. In October, a new report by the International Labour Organisation revealed that global child labour has plummeted. In 2016, there were 98 million fewer boys and girls being exploited than in 2000.

5. Solar energy is now responsible for one in every 50 new jobs created in the United States, and the clean energy sector is growing at 12 times the rate of the rest of the economy.

6. On January 21, 2017, the Women's March became the largest single-day demonstration in recorded US history.

7. Seventeen per cent of newlyweds in the United States now marry someone of a different race or ethnicity, a fivefold increase since 1967, when interracial marriage was legalised. (Via The 99 best things that happened in 2017, on

'I wonder if I have to prove I qualify!' writes Pauline Pedersen (spotted in the Papakura Courier on January 2).
'I wonder if I have to prove I qualify!' writes Pauline Pedersen (spotted in the Papakura Courier on January 2).

3D printing comes of age

"The price of the cheapest 3D printer came down from $18,000 to $400 within 10 years," writes Adrian Muller. "In the same time, it became 100 times faster. All major shoe companies have already started 3D printing shoes. Some spare aircraft parts are already 3D printed in remote airports. The space station now has a printer that eliminates the need for the large amount of spare parts they used to have in the past. At the end of this year, new smartphones will have 3D scanning possibilities. You can then 3D scan your feet and print your perfect shoe at home. In China, they have already 3D printed and built a complete six-storey office building. By 2027, 10 per cent of everything that's being produced will be 3D printed."