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Can you guess which science story was the most talked about in 2016?

As you can see, hot sauce is amazing and needs to go on everything. Image from iStock.

It's a tough one — there were a lot of great science studies. We had the paper that linked Zika and birth defects, for instance. Plus there was the evidence of Einstein-affirming gravitational waves, the mysterious Planet Nine, and that time scientists tried to teach a computer Go.


But there was one story that ruled them all, according to the U.K. firm Altmetric. They analyzed over 17 million mentions of nearly 3 million pieces of research, tracking not just how they were received in the scientific community, but how they were talked about by the news and social media.

So who won? The freakin' president of the United States of America.

President Obama at South by Southwest in 2016. Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for SXSW.

That's right. It's Obama. Back in June, Obama published a real, scientific, peer-reviewed article in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The paper, "United States Health Care Reform: Progress to Date and Next Steps," was kind of a report card on Obamacare.

It's free to read, but boiled down, it basically said that based on an analysis of public data, the Affordable Care Act had positive effects on insurance coverage, access to care, and overall health. Of course, there were still some significant gaps that future policymakers could fix. Basically, the paper gave Obamacare a B+.

The paper dominated Altmetric's analysis, garnering their highest score ever, largely fueled by a gigantic public reaction.

It's kind of cool to see this marriage of policy and science. It's also an awesome reminder that Obama is a giant, unabashed nerd.

This paper made Obama the first president to ever write a proper scientific paper while in office. That said, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush have published opinionsin the past, and, weirdly, it turns out Thomas Jefferson was really into writing about giant sloths.

No, seriously. There's a species of extinct giant sloth named after him. Photo by Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images.

This end-of-the-year surprise feels especially apropos considering how much of a talking point Obamacare was during the election and the fact that its future seems uncertain at this point.

But nevertheless, nerds unite. 'Cause science geeks: It turns out we've got friends in high places.

Photo: Jason DeCrow for United Nations Foundation

Honorees, speakers and guests on stage at We the Peoples

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Soul Asylum's "Runaway Train" actually saved 21 missing children.

Anyone who was a teen in the '90s will remember the grunge era. Nirvana, Pearl Jam and Soundgarden were topping the charts with their gravely metaphorical lyrics, but they weren't alone. Soul Asylum burst onto the scene with their solemn anthem "Runaway Train" complete with a video that showcased missing kids.

The video gave missing and exploited children a much bigger platform to be recognized on, because before the video was showcased on MTV, milk cartons were the common method to distribute these photos. In theory, milk cartons seem like a pretty effective way to highlight missing children, but in reality, eventually people would become blind to the photos.

The music video for "Runaway Train" was played all around the world and to the target audience that would most likely recognize the faces. It should come as no surprise, then, that the video helped to bring home 21 missing children. What is surprising, is that the band had to push to keep the pictures of the missing kids in the music video because people didn't think it was working.

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Florida city commissioner is being called a hero for confronting mayor who cut off power to residents

"You're calling me disrespectful because I've interrupted people, but this gentleman has turned off people's lights in the middle of a global health pandemic."

City commission meeting in Lake Worth Beach, Florida

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A city commission meeting in Lake Worth Beach, Florida has gone viral after Commissioner Omari Hardy took his fellow city officials to task for their seeming indifference to their constituents during the coronavirus crisis.

Hardy confronted Mayor Pam Triolo and City Manager Michael Bornstein, who he said refused to call an emergency meeting last week, per Hardy's repeated requests, to discuss issues coming about from the coronavirus crisis. And he let his frustrations show.

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A newly single mom gets inspiring life advice from an internet 'Bubbie' who's been there

'Take care of yourself first. When you take care of yourself, you can take care of your kid.'

Photo by arty on Unsplash

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Becoming a single mom isn't easy, especially if it's unexpected and you feel wholly unprepared. Recently, a newly single mom posted a tearful plea on TikTok asking for advice on how to navigate her new life. But she wasn't without advice long, "TikTok Bubbie" stitched the video and responded explaining how she survived as an unexpectedly single mom in 1989.

The video was sweet and full of inspiration for single parents starting their journey. In the beginning of the video she explained that her ex-husband left her when her son was 4 years old and took all the money out of the bank account. Being suddenly single caused her to have to give up her acting career.

The internet Bubbie went on to tell the young mom, "I got furniture from the Salvation Army. That's right, I got secondhand furniture. Secondhand clothes for me, my son never. He always was first in my book and still is to this day." TikTok Bubbie wasn't done, she made a second video to expand on her advice.

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