The social and political events of the times are unsettling to many. But despite the regular dose of misery that comes from the news, there are great things happening. Between the various tech, research, and innovation hubs in the world, the beneficial application of cutting edge technology is flowing into the wider world. Three areas of particular importance are energy, information, and health.

Utilising the energy of the sun sounds like a no brainer, and likely our grandchildren’s children will wonder why we didn’t do so earlier. One of the best factors about renewable energy is the positive externalities. A reliable output of clean energy not only improves the environment directly through eliminating polluting elements, it also reduces waste across almost every industry.

This list of 2017 apps shows just a tiny sample of all the tools everyone with a smartphone can access, tools that were unthought of 20 years previously. We all expect our smartphones to do nearly everything short of physical labor, and that expectation is getting closer to being a reality. Note that at this very moment, anyone with a decent internet connection can get a high school and university level education from their phone for free.

Tech is opening a world of possibilities in the field of health, from age extension to rehabilitation. Harvard Medical school is working to develop brain implants that would allow for the movement of artificial body parts and regained eyesight. Organs grown from patients’ DNA will one day allow for unprecedented regenerative care, and non-invasive brain surgery using ultrasound is already in development.

So while the geopolitical situation we find ourselves in may give concern to many, remember that there is a current of advancement beyond the control of any one organisation that is relentlessly furthering the cause of a bright future. If you focus on that, everything seems a tad bit cheerier.