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2010: The Year in Technology

It was a fascinating and full year in technology. From a dangerous computer virus to Facebook to Wikileaks, there was much to talk about. Here are our highlightsfrom 2010 and a brief look forward to 2011.

1. Facebook Has 500 Million Users Around World - Each Facebook user has on average 130 friends and shares 70 bits of personal information - including home movies and family photos - every month. With 500 million users detailing their moods and passions online, Facebook is more than a social networking site. It's a global phenomenon that's shaping the way people communicate.

2. Google Moves Its Service From China To Hong Kong - The Internet company Google has announced that it will stop censoring search results in China and redirect search requests from Chinese users through its server in Hong Kong. In an announcement posted on the company's Web site Monday, Google said the decision did not mean it was leaving China.

3. Facebook Founder Mark Zuckerberg Visits Baidu Offices in China - The chief executive officer and co-founder of the popular social networking website Facebook has met with the head of China's top search engine Baidu.

4. The First Strike in Cyber-War - The Stuxnet worm has been neutralized, but not before it may have done its damage. But what's to come? More attacks, and more sophisticated cyber-weapons, are safe bets.

5. FCC Regulators Pass Controversial "Net Neutrality" Rules for U.S. - The U.S. Federal Communications Commission, or FCC, has approved controversial new rules for the Internet that supporters say will protect the interests of consumers, service providers and investors. Opponents, however, warn that the new rules seek to fix something that is not broken and will invite other countries to do more to regulate the Internet.

6. Nobel in Physics Awarded for Super-Strength Material - The Nobel Prize for Physics has been awarded to two British-based scientists for their discovery of a new material that is only an atom thick and which could change the future of electronics.

7. What Is Wikileaks? - Wikileaks first came online in 2007, promising any individual a forum to anonymously publish previously classified, hidden or sensitive documents and make them publicly available. The idea was relatively simple: given the viral nature of the Internet - and the ease of duplicating digital documents - once secret information was published, it could never become secret again.

8. Fanfare Greets Global Debut of iPad - Technophiles mobbed Apple stores in Europe and Asia to snatch the hottest gadget of the day - the iPad.

Let us know in the comment section what you thought were top tech stories of 2010, or your predictions for 2011.

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    Doug Bernard

    Doug Bernard covers cyber-issues for VOA, focusing on Internet privacy, security and censorship circumvention. Previously he edited VOA’s “Digital Frontiers” blog, produced the “Daily Download” webcast and hosted “Talk to America”, for which he won the International Presenter of the Year award from the Association for International Broadcasting. He began his career at Michigan Public Radio, and has contributed to "The New York Times," the "Christian Science Monitor," SPIN and NPR, among others. You can follow him @dfrontiers.