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  • Letters to the Editor

    These are the most-read Science News stories of 2018

    More than 11 million people visited the Science News website this year. Check out this recap of the most-read stories of 2018, and the most popular stories published this year on each of our blogs.

    Top 10 stories

    1. Male birth control pill passes a safety testMen who took a prototype once-daily contraceptive pill for about a month saw their testosterone and other reproductive hormones...

    12/28/2018 - 12:03 Astronomy, Animals, Anthropology
  • Year in Review

    What will be the big science stories of 2019? Here are our predictions

    Entire disciplines are devoted to predicting the future. Trained forecasters use data, trends, human behavior and more to predict what lies ahead.

    Exactly no one at Science News is a quantitative forecaster or futurist. But we do hear what scientists are buzzing about at meetings, on social media and while reporting stories. So when we asked our writers to predict the big science stories...

    12/28/2018 - 06:00 Science & Society
  • Year in Review

    Artificial intelligence is mastering a wider variety of jobs than ever before

    In 2018, artificial intelligence took on new tasks, with these smarty-pants algorithms acing everything from disease diagnosis to crater counting.Coming to a clinic near you

    In April, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration permitted marketing of the first artificial intelligence that diagnoses health problems at primary care clinics without specialist supervision (SN: 3/31/18, p. 15...

    12/27/2018 - 11:46 Artificial Intelligence
  • 50 years ago, astronauts orbited the moon for the first time

    Apollo 8: Options on the way

    Just two months after the end of the successful first manned Apollo flight ... three astronauts are ready to fly this Saturday to within 70 miles of the lunar surface.... The Apollo 8 plan is for the astronauts to fly as many as 10 orbits around the moon before heading home.  — Science News, December 21, 1968

    Update

    Apollo 8 launched on December 21...

    12/27/2018 - 05:30 Astronomy, Technology, History of Science
  • Year in Review

    2018 was a busy year in space

    Several new space probes got their starts in 2018, while some sang swan songs.

    Hello

    1. TESS is on the lookout for planets

    There’s a new planet hunter in town. The Transiting Exoplanet Survey Satellite, or TESS, launched April 18 to search the nearest, brightest stars in the sky for signs of orbiting planets.

    TESS has already spotted at least two new worlds, one of which may...

    12/26/2018 - 07:00 Astronomy
  • Year in Review

    These 2018 findings could be big news — if they turn out to be true

    Here’s our short list of discoveries reported in 2018 that could shake up science, if they hold up.

    Not so standard

    Dangling from a helium balloon high above Antarctica, the ANITA detector spied two odd signals that hint at the existence of new subatomic particles. Such extremely energetic particles, if they exist, could upend the standard model, the theory that describes the elementary...

    12/21/2018 - 11:00 Astronomy, Paleontology, Particle Physics
  • Year in Review

    The #MeToo movement shook up workplace policies in science

    Science is catching up to Hollywood in coming to terms with its own #MeToo moment. In the last year or so, several high-profile scientists left their posts after investigations of sexual harassment allegations, including geneticist Francisco Ayala, cancer biologist Inder Verma and astrophysicist Christian Ott. But getting rid of the “bad actors” isn’t enough, according to a report...
    12/20/2018 - 12:14 Science & Society
  • Year in Review

    E-cigarettes caught fire among teens

    On November 15, Scott Gottlieb, commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, announced new sales restrictions on certain e-cigarette flavors preferred by teens. The move was a response to a worrying rise in vaping among adolescents in the last year. “E-cigs have become an almost ubiquitous and dangerous trend among teens,” he warned, calling it an “epidemic” in a September...
    12/19/2018 - 06:00 Health
  • Science Visualized

    Erosion has erased most of Earth’s impact craters. Here are the survivors

    When it comes to impact craters, Earth is the pauper of the solar system.

    Even with a recent, still-to-be-confirmed crater discovery under Greenland’s ice, there are fewer than 200 known impact craters on the planet. Mars, for comparison, has hundreds of thousands.

    Produced by falling space rocks, most impact craters on Earth have been wiped away over time by wind, rain, shifting...

    12/18/2018 - 06:00 Earth
  • Feature

    Top 10 stories of 2018: Climate change, gene-edited babies, hidden craters and more

    In 2018, we saw just how much power science has to make a real impact. 

    Science News’ top stories of the year include a literal impact — the hidden contours of what appears to be a massive crater created when a meteorite slammed into Greenland long ago. That discovery ranks among our Top 10 partly because it’s just cool, but also because it raises the tantalizing prospect of solving a...

    12/17/2018 - 08:36 Science & Society