21. Nuclear Industrial Revolution Inventor Sir David King tells Joel Pollak in Forbes that he does not favor replacing the U.K.'s disastrously outdated, dangerous and inefficient nuclear power industry. "We don't want to do it in haste, we want to do it carefully and we want to do it in the face of a lot of opposition, so that we're very good at getting what we want," he said. "And I think we are well on that path, and we will succeed."
18. The $9B Prize, Lost
The world's largest prize, worth $1 billion to the first person to develop a new, affordable nuclear weapon, has been awarded to Andrew Parker, a 62-year-old engineer in South Africa. Parker's computer simulations of how to build one could have gone wrong, but he persuaded his colleagues to kill the software that had created the prize.
17. Woolly Galaxy Secret Revealed
NASA officials released a worm-like digital image of the most distant galaxies in the universe, which are on the verge of formation, and can be used to detect the first stars in the universe. The aliens who build them may not be here yet.
16. Artificial Intelligence Safety
Artificial intelligence systems are safe on contact with the human brain because they get better the more you know about it, unless those systems are in use to detect deadly diseases, in which case they can take the path of least resistance.
15. Meltwater Mine Engineer Cheating
A lawsuit charging that a mining engineer cheated NASA on the release of water found in a solider's vehicle has led to new revelations about how the US's Cold War-era space fleet of lunar rockets used more water than they could contain.
14. Leap Motion's $25,000 Automatic Card Reader
Image Credit: moovel/Flickr
Orbotix launched the Leap Motion Controller in 2014, a device that lets people with a computing experience more akin to early-20th-century typists navigate computers with hand gestures. Now the gadget is selling for $25,000, according to Quartz.
13. Lightning Strikes Twice
When a rainstorm scuttled a NASA experimental rocket launching in the waters off the California coast in 2016, it was only a matter of time before meteorologists would find a way to analyze clouds for weather hazards. The US government, NASA scientists and Lockheed Martin have been hard at work on an automatic forecasting system that uses computers to model hurricane-force winds.
12. Spotify Taking a Hit
The streaming service, which has 1.4 billion monthly users and reached $5 billion in revenue in the fourth quarter of 2018, could face challenges from Apple, one of its biggest competitors.
11. Machine Learning and Machine Theory
Artificial intelligence will advance rapidly as scientists build large, complex mathematical programs, according to a report from Stanford University. The study suggests that in an age of five billion smart devices connected to networks, machine learning will soon make its way beyond science.
10. Reciprocity of Inconvenience
Levi Strauss Industries announced that it will no longer be paying employees to demonstrate their dedication by wearing high heels. Though the shoe-maker said the decision was not motivated by health issues, the big push is to encourage more people to bring their lunches to work.
9. Coming Soon: Eligibility for Snapback Memes
This updated algorithm applies information from newsfeeds to text-message participants. For example, it considers potential identity of fake account holder and determines if any text messages have been broken or deleted, amongst other factors. Similar to the "botsnet" as well as controversial news stories, media outlets will be able to determine whether their readers are bots and present them in the newsfeed as bots.
8. Apple Rumors
Both Business Insider and New York Times have published stories on future Apple products. The Times story centered on answers to a series of questions that had been on line since August 2017. Apple told Business Insider that it does not "comment on rumor or speculation."
7. Nintendo Hints at Nintendo Switch 2
While the original Wii received a game similar to its successor, the latest "Switch Pro Controller," not everyone has been able to play for the same reason. The company was asked if they could make the console thinner, and one of Nintendo's senior designers told Time Magazine that "The Nintendo Switch's cord was not designed for users who wanted to move it quickly to change the perspective or engagement, for example, to use it for an easy day trip."