Science and Technology: The breakthrough subject of the year
The ATLAS experiment's spokesperson and coordinator, Fabiola Gianotti, announced to the world on July 3rd 2012 that a particle consistent with the Higgs Boson was discovered by a team at the CERN, The Large Hadron Collider. [cite]
Maria Corte Maidagan
An international team of scientists concludes that anthropogenic CO2 emissions over the last 100 to 200 years have already raised ocean acidity far beyond the range of natural variations. [cite]
Filmmaker James Cameron became the first solo explorer to descend to the bottom of the Mariana Trench (7 miles below sea level) in March 2012. [cite]
- David William Donald Cameron, Current Prime Minister of the United Kingdom
Mark T. Smith
"History has many records of crimes against humanity, which were also justified by dominant commercial interests and governments of the day... Today, patenting of life forms and the genetic engineering which it stimulates, is being justified on the grounds that it will benefit society... But in fact, by monopolising the 'raw' biological materials, the development of other options is deliberately blocked. Farmers therefore, become totally dependent on the corporations for seeds."
- Hans Herren, Director General, International Centre of Insect Physiology and Ecology, Kenya, winner of the World Food Prize 1995
"This summer I have discovered something totally useless."
- Peter higgs, writing to a colleague about his proposal for a particle at the origin of mass (1964), as quoted in The Hunt for the Higgs Boson, Science Scotland, issue no. 3.
The Voyager 1 probe, sent out to document the outer planets in 1977, is now in the process of leaving our solar system, being the first man-made object to do so. Under the direction of scientist Carl Sagan, it carries a gold record with the sights of human culture just in case it comes into contact with other intelligent beings in the universe. [cite]
Andrew R. Wright
"There's no greater sign of the failure of the American educational system than the extent to which Americans are distracted by the possibility that Earth might end on December 21, 2012. It's a profound absence of awareness of the laws of physics and how nature works. So they're missing some science classes in their training in high school or in college that would empower [them] to understand and to judge when someone else is basically just full of it. Science is like an inoculation against charlatans who would have you believe whatever it is they tell you."
- Neil Degrasse Tyson
"Scientists have become the bearers of the torch of discovery in our quest for knowledge.
- Stephen Hawking
Marking an incredible step forward in the technology of mechanical limbs, this year for the first time, a quadriplegic woman was able to control a bionic arm with her brain. [cite]
"We gaze continually at the world and it grows dull in our perceptions. Yet seen from another's vantage point, as if new, it may still take our breath away."
- Dr Manhattan, Watchmen
Nanoparticles injected into the skin can strengthen the body's response to vaccines, among other things. [cite]
On October 14th, Felix Baumgartner set the world record for the highest jump (from 24 miles up) as well as breaking the sound barrier with his body on the way down. [cite]
"Research is formalized curiosity. It is poking and prying with a purpose."
- Zora Neale Hurston
The United States Army develops a tactical 3D printing capability to allow it to rapidly manufacture critical components on the battlefield. [cite]
"Kevin Dutton's book "The Wisdom of Psychopaths", published in 2012, proposes that there is something to learn about success from serial killers, tyrants, etc. [cite]
For the first time ever, scientist captured a photo of the double helix structure of DNA using an electron microscope. [cite]
California's Proposition 37, an effort to label all genetically modified foods, was rejected in November 2012. [cite]
Superstorm Sandy was one of the most damaging hurricanes to hit the northeast in the past century. In the aftermath, scientists are working out ways to help coastal cities be better prepared for increasingly aggressive weather patterns due to global climate change. [cite]
The potential uses for spider silk are rapidly expanding, from bullet proof vests, to computer chips, to medical engineering. [cite]
Better management of agricultural systems could provide enough food for the expected global population of 9 billion by 2050, according to a new study. [cite]
"Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has."
- Margaret Mead
Arizona State University researchers develop a new software system capable of estimatinggreenhouse gas emissions across entire urban landscapes, all the way down to roads and individual buildings. Previously, scientists quantified carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions at a much broader level. [cite]
"Chemical weapons are something that scares everybody. "