It's been a busy week, what with the Consumer Electronics Show and the Detroit Auto Show showering geeks and gearheads alike with enough conceptual eye-candy to keep us all salivating for the next big thing all year.
But for those of us whose eyes are on the heavens more than on little screens, the 219th annual meeting of the American Astronomical Society was the thing to watch this week.
If the weather holds, NASA's newest space telescope will lift off Friday morning from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, on a mission to map the cosmos.
The Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer, or WISE, is unlikely to see the fanfare granted to the more famous orbiting observatories, especially Hubble, Spitzer and Chandra. But the small satellite is expressly designed to make each of them smarter.