Farewell, Year of the Widget

Why did venture capitalist Ross Levinsohn's prediction that 2008 would be all about widgets seem so tired and predictable? Because it was. "If 2006 was all about social networks, user-generated content and YouTube, then it's a fair bet that 2007 will be about further personalizing life online," Newsweek wrote a year ago. Instead, 2007 turned out to be all about social networks, user-generated content, and YouTube. A shining example of how even the most obvious predictions are wrong.

Newsweek completely missed the coming Facebook frenzy. As for the Year of the Widget, what happened to it? MySpace bought Photobucket — an image hoster, possibly the least sophisticated widget there is. And that's about it.