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Jan 7 2010   4:53PM GMT

For Auld Lang Syne — Alex Howard weighs in on tech stories of the decade

Ivy Wigmore Ivy Wigmore Profile: Ivy Wigmore

Former WhatIs Associate Editor and top-ranked technophile Alex Howard sent us his list of the top tech stories of the decade, bless him!

Here’s what Alex had to say:
As the year ended, many tech pundits and publications naturally made lists of the “Top Tech Stories of the Decade.” My colleague Barb Darrow said good riddance to a bad decade.

IDG/Macworld made a similar list, putting Google’s rise to the top at #1.

The iPhone: Apple redefines a market, again
Gates moves on … baby boomers, move over!
The rise of the botnets: Security tops Web worries
The battle over Facebook: Social networking hits prime time
Vista delays …. and launches
Google superstar HP ties the knot with Compaq
Apple launches the iPod, and gets back on track
Microsoft is busted Dotcom deathwatch


Slideshow of same:
1. Google launches Adwords and becomes tech’s most important company

2. Apple unveils iTunes

3. Microsoft and the feds make a deal

4. Pffft goes dotcom bubble

5. Apple releases iPhone, changes mobile tech

6. Yahoo plays Hamlet with search

7. Craigslist & slow fade of newspapers

8. Google acquires YouTube, legitimizes social media

9. Gates retires

10. HP acquires Compaq

Discovery – focused on tech, not just IT:

10. iPod Crushes Internet Music Piracy (Wrong! -me)

9. YouTube Goes from 0 to 60 in a Click

8. Wi-Fi Takes to the Skies

7. Laptops Get Smaller and Super Cheap

6. Humans Meld with Machines

5. Stem Cells Found in New Sources

4. People Take Action Via Social Networking Web Sites

3. Scientists Create First Synthetic Bacterium

2. Google Becomes a Verb

1. Human Genome Mapped

ZDnet’s list was shorter and gave the nod to Google as well.
1. Apple was big, but Google was bigger.
2. The Apple renaissance.
3. Larry Ellison is a genius: bought PeopleSoft, Siebel, BEA and Sun.
4. Social networking
5. Software as a service emerged

My list? if we limit it to IT, then the top stories are clear. (If we include technology, then Discovery’s list deserves more consideration.)

10. YouTube changes how we watch video

9. Craigslist breaks down e-commerce barriers, disrupts newspapers

8. Mobile broadband and wifi move users closer to pervasive computing

7. Tech gets SaaS-sy, moves into the cloud at Amazon, Google, Salesforce.com

6. M&A: Oracle grows by acquisition, HP-Compaq merge, IBM goes shopping

5. Microsoft settles antitrust suit, finally releases Vista, then Windows 7

4. Dotcom bubble deflates, replaced later by Web 2.0 bubble

3. Social networking redefines how people relate, do business online

2. Apple redefines mobile computing, media and software distribution

1. Google emerges, finds a business model, organizes the world’s info. And more…


We just about crossed emails. In mine, I asked Alex what he saw as the top tech stories of the decade. And in his, he said he’d already prepared this list. Synchronicity and auld lang syne — what could be nicer?

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