A puppy runs for the first time, thanks to 3D printing
Speaking of prostheses, earlier this month, a video of a puppy using prosthetic legs to walk and run for the first time went viral.The prosthetic limbs were designed and made by a 3D printing firm called 3D Systems. The result is absolutely delightful.
A child with autism finds a friend in Siri
There's been quite a bit of documentation of how tablets and smartphones have helped children with autism. But this year, The New York Times profiled a particularly touching relationship between journalist Judith Newman's son and Siri, the personal assistant software on the iPhone.
"For children like Gus who love to chatter but don’t quite understand the rules of the game, Siri is a nonjudgmental friend and teacher," Newman wrote in October.
A teen programmer gets featured at Facebook's developers conference
Facebook featured a particularly special guest at its developers conference this year -- teenage developer Michael Sayman. Sayman lives in Florida and has been making apps since he was 13. Pando Daily's Carmel DeAmicis reported that his app income has helped him support his family. Sayman's mother said that Michael's supplementary income has gone to help them pay the private school tuition for him and his sister, as well as mortgage payments.
See Michael talk about his latest app, 4 Snaps. He shows up around the 20-second mark:
Redditors helped find a lost woman
It’s hard to write about uplifting tech stories without mentioning the online community, which does a lot of good along with all the silly gifs and obsessive conspiracy theories. There are actually quite a few stories to choose from this year, from the lovely to the bittersweet.
Perhaps one of the best is the search that went on for Alzheimer’s patient May Goldberg, who was found after her son, Josh Goldberg, posted in the r/NYC community that she’d gone missing on April 21.
By the end of the afternoon, a user who'd seen the post and May's picture saw the woman, spoke to her and stayed with her while they waited for the police to arrive. "I approached her, asked for her name, told her that her family is looking for her, and took her to Hyatt Hotel lobby to contact the police," the reddit user explained. "The gentleman and lady at the Hyatt front desk were extremely helpful and they contacted the police. Two police officers arrived within 3 minutes."
Do you have an uplifting story to share? Leave it in the comments and start 2015 off on a high note.