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2012 Top 10

Top Ten 2012 Tech Tidbits. Humanity and technology is a funny combo. Who would have ever thought that humans would largely use technology to look at cat photos and take glamorized self portraits? Sometimes, though, technology does something newsworthy. Here’s our synopsis of the top ten tech stories of the year:#10 - Facebook Makes Everyone Adopt Timeline. Timeline, the reverse-chronological display of a user's history on Facebook and other life events, which replaces and combines a user's Facebook Wall and Profile, became non-optional this year. This is the latest occurrence highlighting the fact that norms of privacy on the internet are not well established, and many companies have felt free to renege on previous privacy provisions the moment that it suited them (in contrast, privacy rights in the common law world have been detailed by countless legal precedents going back to 1215). Many people were outraged with the changes, but Facebook ain\’t a democracy, folks. View Source #9 - Syrian Rebels Outwit Internet Shutdown: The Syrian government shut down the internet nationwide to try to thwart Syrian rebels fighting to overthrow President Bashar al-Assad. The rebels thwarted their efforts by working around the shutdown with satellite technology and Skype, having spent months smuggling communications equipment like mobile handsets and portable satellite phones into the country. Using the connection, the activists in Saqba talk to rebel fighters on Skype and relayed to overseas activists and media details about clashes with government forces. View Source #8 - Twitter changed API to eliminate third party apps: If you’re a longtime Twitter user, you might get pretty miffed at the latest change to be quietly rolled out at Twitter HQ: when using Twitter through official apps and its website, you will no longer be able to see which third-party apps the tweets in your timeline came from. This may not seem like a big deal, but it’s a move that discourages third party apps that add functionality to the Twitter experience, putting the producers of those third-party software programs out of business... and leaving you to tweet via the Twitter interface or not at all. View Source #7 - Apple Maps blunder: Apple’s launch of iOS6 featured a Maps program that had significant flaws. Customers and other observers saw it as markedly inferior to Google Maps, which they had used before. View Source #6 - Facebook iPo scandal: the perilous decline of a grossly overvalued stock: Facebook stock debuted at $38 dollars a share in May and then almost immediately began to decline. Facebook faces numerous lawsuits in connection with its offering, including some over allegations that it warned some favored investors that its shares were overvalued (this, in turn, suggests willful fraud on the company’s part). This shows us once again what we’ve known since the dotcom bubble: the internet brings real value to people’s lives, but capturing and monetizing that value can be a challenge, even for some of the biggest players. Read the full story. #5 - Instagram Grows by Leaps and Bounds, Gets Bought by Facebook: Who knew giving users a limited amount of photo filters in a phone app would be the next big thing? Instagram saw its weekly visits go from 56,360 last year to more than 12 million, ending in acquisition by Facebook. Our question: What’s the average ratio of selfies to meal shots? Once owned by Facebook, Instagram released new terms of use that suggested the company may accept payment in exchange for the use of a person's username, likeness, photos and other data for sponsored content or promotions. Social media responded with outrage, and Instagram took back the most ridiculous changes--leaving most changes intact. View Source #4 - Pinterest Takes the Internet by Storm: Ladies (and some men) love Pinterest! Weekly visits hit nearly 29 million in July... up from 1.27 million the year before, with no sign of slowing down. But as regular users will tell you...the site isn’t handling the traffic well. Search results and the live feeds are sparse compared to the breadth of the content users create. Only time will tell if Pinterest remains the giant it is...but it sure is fun. Follow us - we love it! #3 - Apple Shows Samsung Who’s Boss. Apple accused Samsung of infringing on seven patents that covered everything from the pinch and zoom capability of iPads and iPhones to the bounceback effect you see when scrolling. The only quibble Apple didn’t win was over the physical design of the iPad... the design of which first showed up in the 1969 classic 2001: A Space Odyssey. So you know Apple totally thought that up. View Source #2 - Now on YouTube: Mitt Romney Hates Much of America: Mitt Romney tells a room of wealthy donors how he really feels about the “freeloading” 47% of Americans who he alleges will not take responsibility for their lives. YouTube and Twitter shares this talk with that 47%. The point here is simply that without these new media on the internet, this story would never have received notice: the bartender who recorded the footage might have showed it to friends, but that would have been the end of it. Read the full story #1 - Baby Named Hashtag - A mother reportedly posted a photo of her sleeping baby girl on Facebook with the caption: “Hashtag Jameson was born at 10 o’clock last nite!” We were upset in 2010 when a woman didn’t name her kid Megatron after getting over a million Likes on Facebook, so we’re happy that *some* mothers are willing to adorn their precious bundles of joy with ridiculous names. We’re looking forward to a LOL Jones or BRB Bradley. ROFL Roberts wouldn’t be a bad one, either. We remind those affected by this trend that changing one’s name is legal and fairly simple. For the newbies out there, on Twitter people use hashtags (or the # symbol) to mark keywords and trending topics. Hashtag Jameson was born at 10 o'clock last nite! Facebook
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About the Author: Jen

Known to some as "Jen of Jenfest", Jen comes from a long line of get-rich-quick-schemers. Her obsession with experience, marketing and design started at a young age; she launched her first business at the age of twelve, a crochet pop-up. She is known for her uncanny intuition, out-of-the-box ideas, dedication to strategy and appreciation for details. Jen majored in brain science and thinking (Cognitive Science and Philosophy) and thoroughly enjoyed her time at the University of California at Berkeley.

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