Last 10 years: Which technology made the most profound impact in our lives

This decade started with recession as an aftermath of dot-com collapse, another gulf war and the millenium bug which left us smitten than bitten.
As the first decade of 21st century comes to a close — it’s time to reflect on which technology made the most impact and made our lives simple, efficient and connected. We asked our friends, founders & entrepreneurs about the same. They sent back their list and associated sound bytes.

The list with the most impacting technologies on the top:

  1. Gmail
  2. iPod
  3. Google
  4. Social Networking
  5. iPhone
  6. Blackberry
  7. Mobile Telephony & Mobile Internet/Email
  8. SAAS & data in cloud
  9. Blogging
  10. Firefox
  11. Online air/ticket reservation
  12. Portable Digital storage
  13. Affordable air travel
  14. Print on demand

Clearly, Google, Gmail, Mobile Internet esp. with iPhone, Blackberry & smart phones have made access to information on the go. Whereas, the boom in online travel reservation for air & railways have made traveling less of a chore. Here’s what they further elaborated.

Mohit says:

I think in last 10 years many things had impacted our lives which may not be new but were not easily accessible earlier due to cost, infrastructure etc.  For example,  Telecom, Internet, Air travel and Computers got affordable for common people. Banking, shopping, investing and many other activities are impacted by technology. Digital storage enabled us to store tons of information in cell phones, digital cameras, external and portable hard drives, iPods etc. Whereas satellite television, increase in the number of multiplexes, radio give consumers more choices. HDTV, Plasma, IMAX have changes the electronic media and experience completely.

On Social Media as his top choice Abheek quipped:

If man is a social animal – this really capitalizes in the modern era.Bringing friends / foes together, social networking has reconnected millions in just a few clicks!

Shashank sent it summarized:

Cannot imagine surviving the last decade without Gmail & iPod !!! Revolutionary .. Inspirational.

On SaaS & data in the cloud Sameer elaborates:

I used to have a lot of SW installed on my computer along with lot of data – IM clients, documents, mails, ppts, pictures, music and all the jing-bang. However, over the last 2 years 80% of apps which I user are SaaS based and browser is where i spent almost all of my time on Laptop & away. I use apps like Google mail, Google Chat, Google docs, Blog readers, facebook , twitpic and picasa. My contacts are on linkedin and google. I listen to last.fm. So, it does not matter whether I’m on my iPhone or on Laptop, my data and my apps are with me all the time.

iPhone, Blackberry & Smart phones also made a huge impact on our lives. On iPhone Nandini H says:

Personally, I think it redefined how I looked at a phone. iPhone for me is a mobile+personal calendar+digital camera+my laptop+entertainment console = all in one! As a media student I ushered the year 2000 with Media Convergence being the “buzz” word and now in 2009 i’d bet my money on the iphone as a true convergence device!

Namit talks about Blackberry as his top choice:

I am on road a lot and need mail access…  have used the gmail client for mobile for a while, but it drains away all the battery in 4-5 hrs. I used to call up a colleague, and ask him to check my mail and reply on my behalf… was super inefficient for him and me :) Blackberry truly made me a lot more mobile and efficient. (needless to say emails are the most important part of corporate communication)

Sameer further comments on iPhone:

I used to carry my laptop around every where I went but after switching to iPhone, my time spent on laptop time reduced by 70%.Iphone this has given big boost to my productivity and made my life much more comfortable since I dont have lug the laptop everywhere.

Sahil on his top choice:

You got me thinking now…there are so many…

Smart Phones – so I can carry my business with me. SaaS & Social Media – so I can work and spread the word about my business from anywhere.
Facebook/ VOIP/ IM – helps me stay in touch with people whom otherwise I would have forgotten.

Chinmoy sent this to us on twitter:

iPod has shown how digital music is done. Broadband It made possible for people to go online for entertainment on Youtube.

Ankit‘s top 2 items are:

1. Smartphones,
2. Cloud computing and storage

… and Nandini Maheshwari‘s:

1. Blogging
2. iPhone

… and Hari‘s:

1. Firefox
2. GMail

Indus on Google search as his top choice:

Google simplified search both from user experience and cutting the data overload.

Nandini H‘s list includes iPhone, Final Cut Pro, Mobile penetration in India, Social networking, etc. She elaborates:

Final Cut Pro – Made life easy for all people in the movie / video business. For me, i no longer had to think linear on the editing table (such a relief!). It changed the way professionals approached editing and packaged video. I’d say for India, introduction of non-linear technology & personally FCP, as i am a big Apple fan.  I’m also thankful to CDMA technology and also GPRS, and i owe much of the initial phase of my first startup to these technologies. Thanks for making my office virtual in 2005! This one is the last! For India, Nano and Reva – the electric car are two other technologies that have made an impact. Nano making a car affordable to an average Indian, Reva ‘coz thats where the future lies, what with all the global warming effects! and both indigenous.

Lalit asserted:

I think cellphones, Internet and my laptop are the tech advancements that impacted my life the most.

Kapil on his top choice:

(a) google – I completed my MBA thanks to Google
(b) iPhone – cant go anywhere without it

Thanks for your responses & we continue to extend our wishes to everybody!

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  3. Indiran Says:

    Firefox & Social Networking

  4. Foxy Says:

    I am doing a project on the changes of technology over the last ten years…. I think its changed i mean we have a lot more things these days done by computers or whatever than we did ten years ago.

  5. Jay Taylor Says:

    Very well written post. If you want to listen to BBC Radio on the iPhone – I strongly recommend BBC Streams – it is easily the most convenient way to listen to BBC Radio on the iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch and it’s free at BBCStreams.com.

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