Well, we made it. Despite the warming planet, the illegal manipulation of currency, the explosion of fake news sources, the hacking and data leaks, the exploding phones and washers, the endless televised debates, drone strikes, mass shootings, police shootings, riots, violent political rallies, racist rhetoric, p***y grabbing, intolerance, sad and sudden legendary entertainer deaths, unfriending, Twitter blocking, and anthem kneeling, we all somehow managed to get through 2016 alive.
Last year my end-of-year column was headlined “It Was A Very Good Year.” I had Sinatra on my mind and the holiday spirit had kicked in I guess.
This year I’m going with a Leonard Cohen reference. “Hallelujah” (at least its over.)
But it wasn’t all bad, especially in the technology sector, as the promise of futuristic smart homes, smart cars and smart, well, everything, continues to come to fruition. Besides the wow factor of most of these products there is a real revolution going on in the use of technology to improve peoples’ lives.
Some of our strongest retail chains, ones who were really struggling since, well, the Great Recession, began to turn the corner. Consumer confidence is up. Holiday spending is positively popping. And more importantly, manufacturers are populating CE and appliance stores with amazing products.
I now officially talk to my lights instead of hitting light switches and can pretty much stream any song I ever want to hear just by asking my speaker. It may not seem like much but it’s incredibly cool to me.
Senior editor Alan Wolf takes his usual thoughtful look back at the ups and downs of the retail season.
In addition, TWICE editors rubbed our brain cells together and tried to call out the people who most embodied the promise, and pain, of the tech sector this past year. From Cambrian computing to ukulele playing, it was a fun, fascinating, fruitful year for technology.
Our annual selection of TWICE Newsmakers Of The Year begins. As always, there are so many innovators and deserving geniuses in the industry that we obviously couldn’t be comprehensive or you’d be holding a phone book right now. But we cherry-picked a fine cross-section of the people, places and things that caught our eyes and caught our fancies.
By all means, if you feel we made a glaring error or omission please reach out and set us straight. All of our contact info is in the Connect box below this column. We love to hear from our readers, even when they’re yelling at us.
It’s The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year...
And then comes CES.
The upcoming show promises to be as big, bold and bright as ever. Personally, I’m looking forward to seeing the new insane 4K (and beyond) TVs, the latest batch of hi-res audio technology, more voice controlled smart home products and, hopefully, some major announcement from broadcasters and studios regarding easy availability of 4K Ultra HD content. Drones, robots, virtual reality headsets, 3D video cameras are set to capture imaginations and dollars. As are the amazing brains who every year deliver keynotes that expand my mind. As always I feel lucky to have a front row seat for it all.