We receive many media alerts at Select Metrix, but this one caught my eye.  PBS’ Nightly Business Report is airing the 30 Most Important Innovations from the Last 30 Years.  Here is their description:

In 1979, the first spreadsheet software was introduced, Sony rolled out the Walkman, ESPN began broadcasting sporting events to cable TV companies, and on public television, Nightly Business Report made its debut.  To celebrate their three decades on the air, PBS’ Nightly Business Report has teamed up with Knowledge@Wharton, the online research and business analysis journal of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, to select the 30 most important innovations from the last 30 years.

The criteria upon which the innovations were judged:

1.  Did it have a direct and/or material effect on quality of life?

2.  Did it address a compelling need?  Did it solve a compelling problem?

3.  Was it a fresh, new breakthrough?   Was there a “WOW” factor?

4.  Did it change the way business is conducted?

5.  Did it increase the efficiency of how resources are used?

6.  Did it spark an ongoing stream of new innovations on top of the original innovation?

7.  Did it lead to the creation of a vast, new industry?

The first spreadsheet was introduced in 1979?  I was going to vote for Microsoft Windows, but now I suspect that may have existed in some early form before 1979.  The list will be revealed tonight in a special 30 min. program and I already have my TiVo set to record it.

Was there a cell phone in 1979?  I can’t remember.

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