Clearly, it is that time of year to scutinize all that happened in 2007. There are lists and more lists everywhere you look. Here’s another good one from Wired.com…
WIRED.COM – Top 10 Scientific Breakthroughs of 2007 2007 was an amazing year for science. Unlike 2006, there were no high-profile cases of scientific fraud — none that went uncovered, anyway. Journal publishers took extra care, requiring scientists to duplicate results in an effort to avoid scientific, not to mention public relations, fiascoes. And while those are entertaining, we’ll take solid science over the Sturm und Drang of 2006 any day.
It’s nice to see my employer, Intel, made the list with its 45nm technology…
In the race to make computers faster, chipmakers rely on exotic new materials. In January, Intel announced that the element hafnium and some new metal alloys will allow them to make the millions of switches on their microprocessors far smaller. Gordon Moore, co-founder of the company and father of the law that bears his name, called it the biggest change in transistor technology since the 1960s. The tremendous accomplishment allows Intel to squeeze features on each chip down to 45 nanometers from the current standard of 65 nanometers. But the greatest benefit may be an increase in energy efficiency. That improvement comes along with the hafnium alloys that will prevent electricity from leaking across the tiny switches.
If you’ve never been in a modern semiconductor manufacturing facility, well, it’s an amazing thing to behold. In my early years with Intel I spent a lot of time in the cleanrooms doing video production work. Unfortunately, I now spend most of my time in the cubicle farm.
Scanning the list, I’m not quite sure why #6 made the list. Albeit interesting, the dinosaurs’ relationship to birds has been strongly suspected for at least 20 years. A book called Digging Dinosaurs, which I read in 1988, developed the dinosaur-to-bird thesis and had me looking at birds with a renewed curiosity. Even now, when I see a crow, or other large bird, walking on the ground I imagine even larger dinosaurs moving in a similar fashion.
Of course, it is amusing to think the big, bad, scary T-Rex seems to be related to chickens.
Check out the list. There is some interesting stuff going on in the world of science.