An article I wrote for Electronic Products.
The ever-changing tech world is constantly improving, meaning that for some services, it’s time to go
The tech world is always improving, and with improvement comes change. Below is a list of websites and services that were once highly respected and used by many, but are gone as of this year, or are coming to a close as 2013 winds down. As many predict what future technology will bring, it’s just as important to reflect on what we’ve grown from.
Web giant Google announced that its beloved RSS reader, Google Reader, was being shut down earlier this year, shocking its group of loyal followers. However, the company was generous enough to give its devoted users three months to find an alternative feed-reading service. No question about it, millions were sad to see Google Reader go.
As of July 2013, altavista.com has been shut down. The website was founded in 1995 and is recognized as one of the world’s first popular Internet search engines. With the rise of other search engines such as Google, AltaVista lost ground and was overtaken by Yahoo! in October 2003. Now the URL redirects to the Yahoo! homepage. RIP AltaVista.
After a 15-year run, AOL announced that its old school media player, winamp.com is set to shut down on December 20th. The website’s popularity quickly grew with the developing trend of MP3 file sharing, and it currently has an estimated user base of millions worldwide, with only a fraction living in the United States. After closing down, there will be no trace of the once popular media player, as downloads will no longer be available. The closing of Winamp truly marks the end of an era.
This past November, Google Checkout checked out. According to Google, the decision to shut down its online payment processing service was not made lightly, but the company decided its focus was best concentrated in other areas of the payment space. Google will not be offering a replacement processing solution for physical goods, and recommends Google Wallet, its mobile payment system, to those who used Google Checkout.
Facebook’s thumbs-up icon
Social media giant Facebook recently gave the thumbs down to its thumbs-up ‘like’ sign. In a few weeks, Facebook will toss its thumbs-up sign in favor of a simple blue and white button with the word “Like” on it. Over the past few years, Facebook has made it easy for websites to include the Like and Share buttons seen by millions on a daily basis, and the two terms are now ingrained in Internet culture, which is one of the reasons Facebook is dropping its iconic thumbs-up sign. Like it or not, it looks like we’ll have to get used to yet another Facebook design change.
Lost or losing a special tech service this year? It’s okay, we can talk about it. Leave a comment below.