In April, geologists in Serbia dug up a white, powdery mineral that they weren't sure what to make of. They turned it over to Chris Stanley, a mineralologist at London's Natural History Museum, who discovered that it had the same chemistry — sodium lithium boron silicate hydroxide — as the fictional kryptonite, the green glowing rock that, aside from Lois Lane, is Superman's only weakness.
In October, researchers from Bangor University in Wales were trawling an ocean shelf off the coast of north Iceland when they stumbled on what is believed to be the world's oldest living animal: a 405 year-old clam. Or it was living, until researchers had to kill it to determine the clam's age by studying rings on its shell.
Welcome to the first annual Wired News rundown of the year's 10 most important scientific breakthroughs. 2007 was an amazing year for science. Unlike recent years, 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 Sturm und Drang any day. Here we count down the top 10 scientific discoveries that rocked our Wired world the hardest this year.