As 2009 comes to a close, its nice to look back and say thanks to all the companies, products and services that made a difference this year to both my professional and personal life. So without further rambling:
FSG has been an incredible place to work, and November marked my 3rd year with the company. We shipped DJ Hero in October and the game was more or less univerally praised for being a refreshing take on the music genre. The game won several awards including best soundtrack. The studio also expanded taking up both more floor space and more talent. Hopefully we can keep things up in 2010.
Drop Box changed the way I used my PC in 2009. It put my most useful information in the cloud keeping it safe and accessible. Combined with KeePass you have an impegnable password safe to allow you to have a different password for every site you visit and help protect your online identity.
Spotify was probably the biggest innovation in music since the MP3. It marked the turning point of the music industry from ‘let’s sue our customers‘ to ‘let’s give our customers what they have been requesting for a decade‘. Immediate streaming of a very large catalogue of music (including the new stuff) has pretty much left my MP3 collection to get lonely. Of course the industry is still screwing the artists, but they’ve been doing that for a very long time, so this is hardly anything new.
Steam has finally managed to do for the PC what the Xbox 360 did for console gaming. It has created a unified hub for gamers to connect through. It has also delivered us the digital delivery system that many of us had been pining for. Couple this with the recent batch of steam sales which brought many games that didn’t deserve attention at their full price firmly into reach and you have a very attractive package.
VLC – The play everything media player that I could not do without that lets me skip the annoying intro videos, copyright screens and piracy inducing anti-piracy videos on my legally bought DVDs.
Firefox – Chrome came close, but Firefox is still the best web browser around.
Torchlight - This little RPG game took me by complete suprise. I’ve spent days playing this game and it’s still got a lot of kick in it!