As the year draws to a close, it is time to recognise the people, products, organisations, trends and events that have had the greatest influence on the ICT industry and community. We have therefore launched the inaugural Computerworld Top 10 Most Influential.
Earlier this week Computerworld began counting down to the winner with one article each day from 10th place to number one.
We started on Monday with #10 — CSIRO's wireless patent win
When we reach #1 next Friday, it will be over to you for the readers' choice award. If you don't agree with the panel of 12 you can still have your say on the most influential person, product, organisation, trend or event for 2009.
We’ll publish the results on the website and in the February/March issue of Computerworld magazine.
Today is number #6 — Google
Google posed a bit of a challenge for the panel — its inclusion in the Most Influential list was a gimme given its dominance. Identifying a single event, person or product that stood out in 2009, however, looked like it would prove tricky.
But the search giant rallied in the latter half of the year. It launched Google Wave, its innovative, Australian-developed collaboration tool that showcases the talent and ingenuity of local developers on the world stage. Wave may still be in limited beta release and yet to prove itself in the mainstream market, but the buzz surrounding the product is enormous.
Then media baron, Rupert Murdoch, announced News Corp would opt out of Google news. Murdoch was reported as saying aggregators were “feeding off the hard-earned efforts and investments of others”.
Murdoch has also reportedly been in talks with Microsoft over its search engine Bing, which the software giant launched this year to compete with Google. The talks would result is News Corp content being enhanced on Bing, which would pay News Corp a fee in return for exclusivity.
Regardless of whether you consider Google News to be a force for good or evil, there’s no doubt it has changed the online news landscape. And it is just one of the many fingers the company has in many pies. One way or another, Google is a catalyst for change in the ICT industry, whether its Android and smartphones, Chrome OS and operating systems or Google Apps for cloud computing and productivity.
In 2009, Google began its push into enterprise computing in earnest as companies such as New Zealand Postal Services, AAPT and Mortage Choice joining a swag of educational institutions who have migrated to Google Apps.
Google’s dominance across the IT landscape both in Australia and overseas, combined with some interesting products and events in 2009, means the Computerworld Top 10 Most Influential for 2009 panel gave Google the 6th place.
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