2012 – The year in review

2012

As always the tech landscape went though many changes this year. Some of these changes were massive, some more subtle. In this article we look back on some of the more newsworthy international tech events to go down this year.

  • Facebook ditched HTML5 as their mobile platform and went native instead. The HTML5 app was generally accepted as virtually unusable by anyone who tried it. Mark Zuckerberg famously said that choosing HTML5 for their mobile apps was “one of the biggest mistakes if not the biggest strategic mistakes we’ve ever made”
  • Apple launched the iPhone 5 but without Google Maps. The Apple maps app turned out to be spectacularly error-prone showing cities and buildings that did not exist. For the first time in a long while Apple made a mistake and showed that they are fallible after all.
  • Microsoft launched the new version of their flagship operating system for computers: Windows 8. They also launched a range of tablets that would run Windows 8. Lastly, Microsoft launched the new version of their mobile operating system, Windows Phone 8. All three platforms support a common runtime so apps could now run across all three device types.
  • Facebook did a massive IPO but their share price fizzled spectacularly after that. This was widely seen as a sign of ‘irrational exuberance’ and froth in the tech scene in the US.
  • Obama won his second term as president of the USA. Both campaigns relied heavily on number crunching, tech tools and social media marketing efforts. Romney tried emulating Obama’s Narwhal voter identification system by building his own system named Orca. It turns out that Orca was a massive failure with passwords not working on voting day and frequent crashes. Apparently, the application had been deployed to a single server. Massive fail!
  • Whilst everyone else was worried about them creating a black hole that would swallow the planet, scientists at the Large Hadron Collider at CERN managed to identify a new elementary particle, the Higgs boson (dubbed the ‘God particle’).
  • Felix Baumgartner jumped out of a capsule from the edge of space and 8m people watched him live on YouTube. Apart from breaking the sound barrier on his way down, Felix also pumped up sponsor Red Bull’s brand value by hundreds of millions.

So, it’s been an interesting and eventful year. Here’s looking forward to more tech excitement in 2013.