This blog in review, 2008

In 2007's review I decided to do more in-depth, thinking pieces, and I largely succeeded. My year was dominated by the election of our new messiah and your personal flying unicorn, saint Barack of Obama, but I got a bunch of tech stuff in there as well. I also quietly relaunched the Gay Geeks site, which is beginning to pick up steam.



  • The first genuine news broke of a Microsoft acquisition of Yahoo, and I was less than pleased. The acquisition talks went on for ever and ever and it still seems like some sort of deal is inevitable. Meanwhile, Yahoo! floundered around shedding billions in market capitalization and our CEO, the all-around nice guy Jerry Yang. His replacement has not yet been announced.
  • I was inspired by Obama to get more involved in an election than I ever have before, mostly focussed on the primaries in California (we lost, but we still got nearly as many delegates since they are split proportionally, a fact of which the Hillary campaign was famously unaware).
  • I ranted against "tolerance" of gay people, as if homosexuality was bad manners. Be oblivious, not tolerant.
  • I talked about American self-confidence, and how central it is to American culture.



  • The Olympics came and went, impinging on my world only long enough to weigh up the political implications and notice that Matthew Mitcham was hot, gay, and a gold medalist.
  • Spring is always a time of low blogging, as I get out of doors a lot. Autumn is too, for similar reasons.



  • Barack Obama won the democratic nomination for President, and I was overjoyed. McCain gave an awful, ridiculous speech that night, and a friend declared "it's done. We got this one."
  • I expanded on my theme of the Emergent Web from earlier in the year by talking about the future of social software. In brief: the networks have been built, but the tools that make them useful are what are going to appear, and those tools require radically large amounts of processing power, on a scale which is only just beginning to become available.


  • Google launched Knol, a shameless attempt to usurp and monetize Wikipedia, a move I declared as being indisputably evil. The article got a ton of traffic.



  • The hapless Sarah Palin appeared on the national scene, briefly invigorated the Republican base, and gave the McCain campaign a brief two-week lead in the national polls. Democrats freaked the fuck out, but I was unperturbed, and she eventually exploded memorably all over Katie Couric.
  • Google released Chrome, its own browser, which included some genuinely revolutionary performance enhancements and has proven surprisingly popular despite some major problems. Google still seems uncertain whether it has released a reference implementation for other browsers or a competitor, and this probably reflects some internal debate.
  • Google also released Android, the Linux of the mobile world, and I predicted that it would not make much impact versus the iPhone. I'm sticking to that one through 2009.
  • The entire global system of credit and international finance crashed and burned, messily, destroying John McCain's hopes of becoming elected on the strength of his military experience.