Every month we cast around for the best things happening both internally and at home.
Here are our top 5 pics right now:
1. Signs of the times
Looking at the emojis on offer, you could be forgiven for thinking women are only capable of being princesses, dancers and lovestruck partners (as opposed to the number of emojis embracing diversity among fruit and sushi).
That’s hopefully about to change now a group of Google employees have proposed a batch of 13 female emojis that better reflect our modern lives. They include a businesswoman, doctor, scientist, graduate, factory worker, mechanic and farmer.
Heart, heart, smiley face.
2. Road safety… with bells on
The relationship between road users and cyclists has always been strained, but a clever new initiative aims to solve the problem – in London at least.
About 500 cyclists have been issued with ‘Flic’ buttons, which are connected via Bluetooth to location apps on their phones. When pressed, the button flags an unsafe spot AND emails new mayor Sadiq Khan, who has pledged to “make London a byword for cycling”.
Now his inbox will show if he really is ringing the changes.
3. Seeing the funny side
We know anxiety is no laughing matter, but a Twitter user in the US is aiming to foster understanding of what sufferers go through in a light-hearted but poignant way.
Anxiety, The Magazine gently satirises the effects of the condition with headlines like ‘An Anxiety Exclusive Report: Literally EVERYTHING You Said Yesterday; Let’s Go Through it Again’.
4. Girl on a mission
Armed with only an iPhone, Palestinian Janna Jihad Ayyad is reporting from the Israeli-occupied West Bank – and she’s just 10 years old.
The youngster began videoing protests and clashes in the war-torn territory three years ago after two family members were killed. Now her Facebook page, where she posts her videos, has more than 200,000 likes.
“Not a lot of journalists are sending our message from Palestine to the world,” she told Al Jazeera.
Ayyad hopes to study journalism at Harvard; we look forward to seeing her up for a Pulitzer one day.
5. Style shift
Move over celebrity bloggers; here come the mum-next-door Instagram stars. A new survey shows our social-media style icons are less likely to be a Posh or a Gwyneth, and more probably a co-worker or school mum.
Just 3 per cent of the 14,000 people surveyed would consider buying a celeb-endorsed item, against 60 per cent who were influenced by a ‘normal’ blogger – and we’re not talking about the bikini-clad, hipster stereotype.
For more of our favourite things, check out the August issue of NEXT.