Want to know what nanomanufacturing is? The connection between fracking and new oil pipelines? How much those F-35 Joint Strike Fighters will ultimately cost? Listen to our 10 most downloaded podcasts of 2014 to help understand some of the major issues of the year. The $1 Trillion F-35 Joint Strike Fighter? The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is the most expensive aircraft the Department of Defense has ever developed. But when it’s all said and done, just how much will it cost you, the taxpayer? Our most popular podcast of 2014 explains some of the issues with estimating this aircraft’s costs: F-35 Joint Strike Fighter Improved Cost Estimates Needed A More Efficient Federal Government = Potential Taxpayer Savings Learn how the federal government might save money and increase efficiency in our podcast on our 4th annual look at duplication, overlap, and fragmentation across the government: Reducing Government Duplication and Saving Tax Dollars Stolen Identities, Stolen Tax Refunds Fraudsters made off with more than $5 billion in tax refunds using stolen identities in the 2013 tax filing season. Learn how this happens, and what you should do if you think it’s happened to you: Identity Theft Refund Fraud Airline Pilot Shortages The number of commercial airline pilots has declined since 2000, and there are concerns about a potential shortage of qualified pilots in the near future. Our podcast describes why this shortage is happening, and what the federal government and airline industry can do about it: Current and Future Availability of Airline Pilots Transporting Oil and Gas Technology advancements, such as hydraulic fracturing, have greatly increased U.S. production of oil and natural gas, often in areas with no infrastructure for safely transporting it out. Our podcast on oil and gas transportation infrastructure issues explains the risks: Oil and Gas Transportation DOD Plans for New and Existing Major Weapon Programs Earlier this year we completed our annual review of the Department of Defense’s plans to acquire major weapon systems. Learn more about how DOD plans to spend hundreds of billions in tax dollars: Annual Quick Look at DOD's Portfolio of Major Weapon Programs Risks and Challenges of Bitcoins and Other Virtual Currencies This year saw the bankruptcy of the Mt. Gox virtual currency exchange after it reportedly lost more than $460 million worth of Bitcoins. Learn about some of the issues with these currencies, including challenges for federal law enforcement and risks for investors: Federal Government Challenges with Virtual Currencies Deciphering Health Care Costs It’s hard to find out what a health procedure will cost and, even if you can, higher prices don’t necessarily equal better care. Our podcast on variations in health care pricing also describes some tools for estimating your health care costs: Health Care Price Transparency Nanomanufacturing & Implications for U.S. Competitiveness Nanotechnologies, such as concrete that lasts longer and “heals” itself, could dramatically affect society and the economy. Listen to our Chief Scientist, Tim Persons, explain nanomanufacturing and what its “megatrend” status means for U.S. competitiveness: Highlights of a GAO Forum on Nanomanufacturing & Implications for U.S. Competiveness Federal Agencies' Customer Service Efforts Federal agencies like the Forest Service and border patrol provide services to the public, but how do they know how well they’re meeting people’s needs? Find out how selected federal agencies evaluate and improve their customer service: Federal Agencies' Customer Service Efforts See you next year! This is our last post for 2014. Thank you for following our blog. If you haven’t subscribed yet, please do so, and you will get an e-mail when we return in January 2015.