10 Things You Won't See After the Recession

Say Goodbye to . . .

7. Palm Inc.

Elevation Partners, which has among its principals U2 lead singer Bono, pumped a whopping $100 million into the failing Palm Inc. this week.

The idea is to give the company time to release its forthcoming Nova operating system, which will take the cell-phone world by storm and give Apple a run for its money. It would have been far more efficient, however, to just flush that money down the toilet. With the iPhone setting the handset interface agenda, Blackberry-maker RIM kicking butt in the businesses market, and Google stirring up trouble with its Android platform, this is no time for a clueless company like Palm to be introducing a new operating system. By this time next year, Palm will be gone. And so might Elevation Partners.

8. Yahoo

Yahoo is another company that can't seem to do anything right. Or, at least, can't compete with Google. Yahoo will be acquired by someone, and its brand will become an empty shell -- used for some inane set of services but appreciated only by armchair historians (joining the ranks of Netscape, Napster and Commodore).

9. Half of All Retail Stores

Many retail stores are obsolete and will be replaced by online competitors. Entire malls will become ghost towns. By this time next year, most video game stores, book stores and toy stores -- as well as many other categories -- will simply vanish. Amazon.com will grow and grow.

10. Satellite Radio

I'm sorry, Howard Stern. It's over. The newly merged Sirius XM Radio simply cannot sustain its losses. The company is already deeply in debt and would need to dramatically increase subscribers over the next six months in order to meet its debt obligations. Unfortunately, new car sales, where a huge percentage of satellite radios are sold, are in the gutter and stand-alone subscriptions are way down.

Change is hard. But efficiency is good. While boom years gives us radical innovation and improve consumer choice, recessions help us focus on what's really important and accelerate the demise of technologies and companies that are already obsolete.

So say good-bye to these 10 things, and say hello (eventually) to a new economy, a new boom and a new way of doing things.

Mike Elgan writes about technology and global tech culture. He blogs about the technology needs, desires and successes of mobile warriors in his Computerworld blog, The World Is My Office. Contact Mike at mike.elgan@elgan.com, follow him on Twitter or his blog, The Raw Feed.

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