Today is Thanksgiving in these United States, and I’m feeling in an appropriately grateful, contemplative mood. Mostly for family and friends, of course–but a few technology-related items have snuck onto my list of things I’m thankful for this year. Here are some of them, in no particular order:
1. The Internet Archive. I’m frustrated with its Wayback Machine these days–it fails me as often as it works–but the rest of Archive.org remains amazing. My favorite feature: The endless repository of old-time radio shows.
2. Cheap storage. Incredibly cheap storage. Why, when I was a boy, 89KB TRS-80 floppy disks were $50 for a box of ten; I couldn’t afford even one box, and had to buy single floppies from a teacher who sold them at a profit…
3. My iPhone 3G. It’s not perfect. Actually, it’s sometimes infuriating. Sometimes it even leaves me infuriated with Apple. But it’s still the best phone I’ve ever owned, and the most exciting new platform since the original Mac.
4. iPhone vs. Android. It’s shaping up to be one of the most interesting platform battles in a long, long time. And the longer it goes on for, the more consumers will benefit.
5. Internet Explorer vs. Firefox vs. Safari vs. Opera vs. Chrome vs. Flock. Don’t you just love Browser Wars II?
6. WordPress.com and Ning. Two remarkable free services; I use both of ’em to power Technologizer, and recommend them every chance I get.
7. Google’s phone apps. The company does consistently good stuff, for multiple platforms. Some of its best stuff, in fact.
8. Google Web search in your pocket. No matter how you get to it, and no matter what phone you use it on. It’s a joy to be able to answer nearly any question that pops into my head, no matter where I happen to be.
9. Lala. A spectacular music service.
10. Pandora. A really neat music service–especially on the iPhone–which may escape an untimely death.
11. Verizon BroadbandAccess Connect EVDO service. I finally broke down and signed up for it a couple of months ago, when it dawned on me just how much of my time on earth I’ve wasted to date trying to connect at Wi-Fi hotspots. Best sixty bucks a month I’ve ever spent.
12. Twitter. Mock me if you must–I don’t care. It brought me joy this year, especially during the presidential debates.
13. Hulu. Who would have thunk a video site from the oldest of old-school media companies could be so nicely done? Speaking of which, have you seen the original Casino Royale?
14. You. All of you who visit Technologizer, that is–and especially those who participate in comments and/or join the Technologizer Community. I’m having the best time of my career doing this, and all the feedback I get from smart people is one big reason why.
So happy Thanksgiving, everybody–I hope yours is pleasant, peaceful, and filling. And if you’ve got any tech-related things you’re thankful for today, why not share them here?