Clay Shirky is the author most recently of the book "Cognitive Surplus: Creativity and Generosity in a Connected Age." He's teaching at Harvard this year. When we asked Clay what mattered in 2010, the first thing he said was Wikileaks. Not because the content of the leaked information was intrinsically important but because the means by which that information was gathered and distributed points to a new reality in journalism and in society in general.
As for the big gadget of the year, the iPad, Shirky again thinks the device itself is less important than its symbolic value. He points out that Apple has for years owned the personal media player market with the iPod. But remember that the Mac computer from way back when was soon trounced in popularity by the PC. Now you have Android phones outselling iPhones and you'll soon have a tablet computer market where the iPad is part of the scene but not the whole scene.
Shirky also said that this year, and in the coming year, we'll see the line between online life and real life dissolving. It's not a matter of being online versus being in the real world. As computers get more portable and online connections easier to come by, we'll all just be in a web-enabled society.
Also in this show, the fellas from We Sing Your Tweets join us for a musical version of one of the most retweeted tweets from 2010.