Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Top science news stories of 2005

This is the time of year that everyone in the news business offers an opinion on the top stories of the year, so we're not going to be any different.

Science Magazine selected "Evolution in Action" as the year's top story.
Equipped with genome data and field observations of organisms from microbes to mammals, biologists made huge strides toward understanding the mechanisms by which living creatures evolve.

To round out the top 10, the runners-up were:

  • 2. Planetary probes - missions to Mars, Saturn and its moons, and others
  • 3. Plant development - molecular biology of flowers
  • 4. Violent neutron stars - magnetars and short-duration gamma-ray bursts
  • 5. Genetics of brain disease - schizophrenia, Tourette syndrome, dyslexia
  • 6. Earth's differentiation - meaningful differences between earthly and extraterrestrial rocks
  • 7. Potassium channels - molecular structure of an essential component of nerve and muscle cells
  • 8. Climate change - a crescendo of evidence that it's real
  • 9. Systems biology - understanding cells as complex systems
  • 10. ITER - a site for the International Thermonuclear Experimental Reactor is finally chosen

We don't disagree with these choices, but our own list is mostly different, if only because it's limited to stories we have written about (or plan to soon). In the following list, there are references to some (but not all) of our relevant articles.

  1. Accelerating progress on cancer - here, here, here, here
  2. Climate change is real - here, here
  3. Gamma-ray bursts - here
  4. Dark matter and dark energy - here, here, here, here, here
  5. Gene expression and epigenetics - here, here, here
  6. Star formation - here, here
  7. Video conferencing - here
  8. Quantum computing - article coming real soon now

Other lists of top science stories for 2005

Top Science Stories of 2005 - Scientific American

Review of the year - Physics World

The Top Physics Stories for 2005 - Physics New Update

NewScientist.com's top 10 news stories of 2005

2005: The year in astronomy - New Scientist

2005: The year in the solar system - New Scientist

2005: The year in biology and medicine - New Scientist

Most Overlooked Science and Tech Stories of 2005 - by RJ Eskow - also here


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