Friday High Five: Basketball for Gaddafi, Winds Pause Global Warming and More

Playing basketball for Gaddafi

In this incredible article for BBC News, Alex Owumi tells the story of how he moved to Libya to play basketball on a team for president Gaddafi - a team where players were abused and beaten if they lost or played badly, lived in luxury apartments with photos of their ‘benefactor’ on the walls, and were flown to games on private jets. Owumi was inadvertently caught up in the revolution against Gaddafi, and ate cockroaches and worms to survive while trapped in his apartment for a fortnight. Eventually, he escaped to Egypt.

The Lean In/Getty photo gallery doesn’t feature women laughing with salad

Stock photography is predictably rife with cliches - and stock photos featuring generic women have spawned complaints and spoofs alike in recent years. In an effort to broaden the range of images available of women, Getty has released the Lean In collection, ‘positive images of women, families and even men’. Less images of women in suits juggling babies and briefcases, more images like the one below, of a woman fixing a robot.

Making Her real: Why you might fall in love with your computer

Software designer Barry Saunders looks at the technology that makes the fictional near-future shown in Her look a little more possible - and questions the ethics of a world where an operating system can understand you completely (by reading all your personal emails).

Paris’s abandoned Metro stations as restaurants, pools and more

The Paris Metro extends over 200 kilometres, with more than 300 stops. There are also 11 unused stations, most of them shuttered during the occupation of World War II and never reopened. Mayoral candidate Nathalie Kosciusko-Morizet wants to reclaim the stations for the citizens of Paris, and has commissioned an architect and an urban planner to draw up possibilities - including for a pool, a restaurant, a nightclub and a theatre. Here’s what they’d look like.

Strong winds pause global warming

Strong winds have resulted in an apparent pause in global warming, as excess heat is driven into the ocean, climatologists have found. ‘The effect of the strengthened winds is equivalent to 0.1–0.2C of surface cooling – which accounts for almost all of the observed slowdown in global surface temperatures.’ This pause is expected to eventually and inevitably lift.