10 Mind-blowing Milestones From 2017
2017 has been a big year. While not all of it has been positive, we’ve managed to amass a pretty impressive collection of milestones and achievements. Here’s a collection of some of the best to put a smile on your face and help end the year on a high note.
1. The Big Mac turned 50
McDonald’s most famous burger made its debut in Pittsburgh in 1967, selling for 45c a pop. It quickly became a best seller and was added to the menu of all the franchises across the US the following year. Sales now top 17 Big Macs per second in the US alone and the burger has reached such global cult status that it’s spurned its own economic index, creating an easily-understood measure of purchasing power parity between currencies.
2. Scientists successfully edited the first human embryo
This July, a team of researchers in Oregon broke new ground when they utilised a revolutionary technology - CRISPR - to delete a gene linked to heart conditions from a human embryo. If this result can be reproduced, the technology has the ability to eradicate genetic diseases entirely. It’s a prospect that’s proving equal parts exciting and controversial, thanks to the ethical grey area in which it sits.
3. 3.4 million strangers got behind one man's quest for a year's supply of chicken nuggets
A Nevada teenager with a hankering for fast food campaigned Wendy’s for a year’s supply of chicken nuggets via Twitter. The chain told him he’d need 18 million retweets to claim his prize, but relaxed the rules once his campaign broke the existing Twitter record and received an impressive 3.4 million retweets. They gifted him with a year’s supply of nuggets and also made a $100,000 donation to the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption; a non-profit organisation created by the company’s founder. File this one under humorously heart-warming.
4. The iPhone turned 10
Taking more than two years and $150 million to develop, the original iPhone was revolutionary, blurring the boundaries between phone and personal computer for the very first time. The iPhone X was released this November to coincide with the 10 th anniversary of the device and includes features exponentially more advanced than those of its predecessors, like wireless charging and facial recognition.
5. Australia became the 26th nation to legalise same-sex marriage
After a landmark postal survey showed majority support for legalising same-sex marriage, the Australian government amended the law to allow same-sex couples to wed from December 9th. The first couples exchanged vows one week later, with many more set to follow in the new year.
6. Canningvale celebrated some big birthdays
We turned 40 this year! We've been designing and manufacturing beautiful collections since 1977, and while our business has grown, we’ve maintained the same unwavering commitment to quality and innovation: it’s something we’re pretty proud of. 2017 also marked the 30th anniversary of our Royal Splendour Towel collection. We did the maths and we’ve produced more than one million towels, which - laid end to end - would make the journey from Melbourne to Sydney and back again.
7. Five new species of peacock spiders were discovered in Western Australia
While spiders may not be your top pick for a new species discovery, these little guys are actually pretty cool. They’re small, colourful, and harmless. You can check them out here.
8. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone turned 20
J. K. Rowling’s genius was first revealed to the world on June 26 th, 1997, when Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone first hit the shelves. Seven books, eight movies, and a $15 billion franchise later, the series is one of the most-loved of all time. The 20 th anniversary of its release was celebrated around the world with quidditch matches, scientifically-sound sorting hat quizzes , and Potter movie marathons, which lasted more than 20 hours.
9. We discovered a new continent
An international team of 32 scientists found a new continent - called Zealandia - in the South Pacific. It sits underneath the ocean floor between New Zealand and New Caledonia and takes up an area of 4.92 million square kilometres. Geologists have been studying it for years and finally have enough evidence to classify it as a separate continent. We’d best update our basic geography.
10. Chinese scientists achieved teleportation
But probably not in the way you’re thinking. Rather than teleporting themselves (technology which is, undeniably, still a pipe dream) they teleported photons from the ground into outer space, using a combination of mirrors and lasers. While this may not sound exciting, it represents a huge leap forward for quantum physics and is likely to drastically change how we move energy and information around the world.
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