At this time of year everyone publishes their predictions which generally end up being totally wrong. Nevertheless, having spent December plying key industry figures with drink to discover their plans of the coming year, we have to justify our expenses claim somehow. So here we present our roadmap for 2005.
Following sales of IBM PC division rumours abound that Big Blue might make a bid for Apple. Shares in Apple soar. MSN claims its search index contains 10 billion pages.
US Congress passes anti-spyware bill. Microsoft slips out 64-bit Windows XP. Yahoo announces that it is to index the entire British Library as part of its search database. First malware exploiting vulnerability in Firefox sweeps the web. The spreadfirefox web site posts response: ''we're really excited that we are being taken seriously''. Firefox's market share collapses.
Microsoft announces that Hotmail mailboxes have Gb capacity. Email spam is reported to leap 10 per cent. In advance of an election, the government announces tax cuts due to 'unprecedented revenues`. Apple releases 'Tiger' OS.
Google announces it contains 15 billion pages. Spyware reported to have increase 500 per cent over the quarter. Hewlett-Packard sells PC division to Chinese company. UK government forced to deny latest phishing attack originated from the Treasury. J.R Hartley expresses delight that 'Fly Fishing' is available on Yahoo!
New multiplayer video game clogs internet as thousands of broadband users join in online mayhem. Shares in Cisco soar. Yahoo! says it has indexed 20 billion pages. Chinese company announces new 64-bit x86 compatible processor range. Mac blogs alive with rumours of forthcoming `Tiddles` OS.
Steve Ballmer warns that Linux users are open
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to spyware attack. There is unseasonal hail. US expresses concern that too much of the country's IT business is falling into Chinese hands. Music industry reports that the hot debate among teenagers is whether its cooler to download, rent or subscribe to music services.
Consternation as newspaper reveals wireless users outside Windsor Castle can log in to royal family's wireless network. Widespread horror as it is found that William and Harry have been downloading Ozzy Osbourne tracks from Kazaa. A heatwave sweeps north america
Steve Ballmer warns that Linux users are at risk of being struck down by boils and pestilence. Public spat between AMD and Intel over who has the best 64-bit benchmarks. Mr B. Yokemite, of Akron Ohio issues lawsuit against search engines claiming discrimination, as his home page is not indexed yet.
Sony Music buys Kazaa and announces that p2p networks are the 'future of music'. Sony shares leap 10 per cent. IBM strikes cross-licencing deal with Apple. Rumours abound that Apple's desktop will appear on Linux. There is snow.
CIA found to be source of spyware software. Congress amends anti-spyware bill. A deranged Japanese soldier from WWII is found in Samoa. Google shares take a tumble when he is found to be clutching a patent for web search engines.
Apple's quarterly results reveal that the company makes more money from iTunes/iPod than from Macs. Music industry executives raise a statue in Steve Jobs's honour. Chinese government announces that all PCs made in the country will ship with Red Dragon Linux. Microsoft shares collapse. Next generation DVD players are this year's must-have Christmas gift.
Music industry expresses puzzlement that no one is interested in listening to its product anymore. Steve Ballmer seen walking the streets of Seattle carrying sign proclaiming ''Beware Linux - the mark of the anti-Christ''. At glittering champagne Christmas event in Los Angeles, movie moguls warn that illegal video downloads are killing the industry.