What a Dumb Decade: The 87 Lamest Moments in Tech

2005

34. Bizarrely, Stephen Hawking's number wasn't included.
T-Mobile confirms that ubersocialite Paris Hilton's Sidekick account has been hacked. The phone numbers of Christina Aguilera, Vin Diesel, Eminem, Anna Kournikova, Andy Roddick, Ashlee Simpson, and other Hilton pals all wind up exposed on the Web.

35. That's some random stranger's account, but yes, it did load lickety-split.
Google introduces Google Web Accelerator, a short-lived piece of Windows software that "uses the power of Google's global computer network to make web pages load faster." It also includes a bug that lets people see other users' discussion groups and other password-protected information.

36. To misquote the Video Professor, "Don't try my product."
A Cnet story about privacy concerns over Google illustrates its point by providing information about Google CEO Eric Schmidt found via Googling: his salary, neighborhood, political contributions, and more. Schmidt responds by instituting a year-long ban on responding to inquiries from Cnet. It ends after a couple of months.

37. And yet Apple inexplicably continued with plans for the iPhone.
Rumors that iTunes will land on phones turn out to be true when Steve Jobs demos Motorola's ROKR onstage at an Apple event. When Jobs shows how you can pause music and take a call, he pushes the wrong button and the feature fails to work. News reports later say that consumers are returning the phone at six times the usual rate.

38. October 2005: Sony rootkit.
Security expert Mark Russinovich discovers that a Sony BMG CD he's bought has copy-protection that silently installed a risky, difficult-to-install rootkit on his PC. Trojan-horse writers soon take advantage of Sony BMG's software to attack its customers computers; Sony BMG says it's "temporarily suspending" use of the copy-protection technology. It ends up paying $5.75 million to end investigations into its actions by 42 U.S. states.

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