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101 top technology moments of 2008

Panasonic's 150-inch plasma TV was one of the things that surprised us in 2008
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The technology industry is always on the move and it's often hard to guess where it's going next. For example, back in 2007 we were totally unaware that these things would happen…

1. That you could turn the Nintendo Wii’s sensor bar into a cool headtracker.

2. That people would pay a whopping £70 for Nintendo's Wii Fit (which is basically an intelligent bathroom scale). And then get annoyed when it called them 'overweight'...

3. That Panasonic was hiding a 150-inch HD plasma at CES, eclipsing its own 103-inch set. Want one? It’ll cost you $150,000 (£75,705).

4. That Low energy light bulbs could be dangerous to your health. Apparently they can cause nausea, dizziness and migraines.

5. That Warner Bros would strike the killing blow in the HD DVD vs. Blu-ray war. The defeated Toshiba would throw in the tech-towel on the format two months later.

6. That the world's smallest video camera, the Japanese DVR-SP, weighs barely 18g and looks like a cigarette lighter.

7. That Sony's PlayStation 3 would make a comeback after being roundly criticised for being too expensive and for not having enough good games.

MacBook air ad

8. That Apple’s gorgeous MacBook Air would fit inside a manila envelope. Great ad; sadly, the MacBook Air didn’t turn out to be the great Mac ultra portable we were hoping for.

9. That 40-hour laptop batteries could be on the way. Magical nanotechnology developments promise a 10-fold increase in charge capacity and staying power.

10. That Windows 7 rumours showed up Vista for the old dog of an OS it obviously is.

We also didn’t know…

11. That 2008 would be the year when all the cool kids were talking about the ‘mobile Internet’ and how great it's going to be.

Windows xp

12. That thousands of people would still be showing their love for Windows XP. There was even a petition to stop Microsoft abandoning support for it.

13. That the MOD lost 69 laptops and 7 desktops.

14. That paedophiles are using sat-nav systems to store pornographic images.

15. That an average mobile phone SIM card can apparently withstand temperatures of up to 450 degrees and still work.

16. That Qtrax’s sky-high promises of “free music” were too good to be true.

17. That Microsoft would make a $44 billion bid to own Yahoo’s ass. Big money, but (so far) Yahoo is playing hard to get.

Love and robots

18. That the term ‘cybersex’ would be defined as "computer-mediated sexual contact or technologically mediated intimacy". It seems people are getting jiggy in Second Life.

19. That Nvidia would snap up physics chip maker Ageia, best-known for its PhysX technology.

20. That frickin’ electron beams would promise massive hard drives in the near(ish) future. Come in ‘perpendicular recording’… your time is up

And who’d have predicted…

21. That Texas Instruments would be working on new processor technology that could draw its power from the heat of the human body.

Mobile phones

22. That mobile phones could make you infertile. Jeez

23. That 44 per cent of the world's spam comes from Europe.

24. That I'm no longer a hard-core gamer. :-(

25. That 47 per cent of British men said they would give up sex for six months in exchange for a 50-inch plasma TV.

26. That Sony Ericsson would be working on its first Windows Mobile-powered phone – the Xperia X1.


27. That you can't ever really leave Facebook.

28. That Polaroid would kill off instant film, having reserved a plot in the tech-graveyard next to HD DVD.

29. That the 3G iPhone would arrive in mid-2008... in June to be exact... probably on the 9th or the 15th… screwing over 2G iPhone owners everywhere...

30. That balloons floating 100,000 feet in the stratosphere could be used to offer mobile phone reception for people living out in the sticks.

In 2007, we were unaware…