by Mark Chillingworth

If technology were Xmas number 1 singles

Dec 19, 2010
IT Strategy

Back by popular demand is our If tech and tech firms were. But this time, it’s seasonal with our Christmas specials, none of which feature David Jason. So to unwrap the first of Christmas 2010, we have – If technologies were Christmas Number One hit singles. Merry Xmas Everybody, Slade 1973 – the iPhone The Slade classic is today a Christmas anthem and although many of you  profess to hate it, truth be told, when  it starts playing in the department store as you rush around trying to remember what size clothing fits your significant other your foot taps and you begin to smile. It should be a song you hate, it is simplistic and the only song Slade composed that anyone has ever heard of. It is over played and by New Year’s Eve you are sick of the sound of it. The iPhone has much in common with the Slade Xmas tune. You should hate it, after all it comes from the Apple house and therefore will not operate properly with any meaningful applications at the office, but what’s this, it does. Everyone has one now and its interface is excellent and a joy to use, like Slade you just wish it wasn’t so easy to have in your life. Mistletoe and Wine, Cliff Richards, 1988 – Microsoft Office What is it about Christmas Number 1s that make them so annoying, yet so fitting? Again aging songster Cliff Richards must live off the royalties this 1988 song makes him alone. The song has that catchy element that sees it full embedded into your daily life, like it or not. There is little to like about it, but you find yourself singing along at the office party after one too many beers and having told the CFO that you do like him really. Talking of Office, the Microsoft application suite is another aging product (even with all the updates) that just won’t go away and earns Microsoft millions in royalties, also known as licence revenue. It is embedded into your daily life and for all the hue and cry coming from the Open Source community you cannot wean yourself off Office. It has some annoying quirks and angers and delights you in equal manner. Can we fix it? Bob the Builder 2000 – Helpdesk Perhaps it was the positive air that heralded the first Christmas of the last decade that Cbeebies star Bob the Builder charted as the Christmas Number One. Today, with an economy totally broken by the banks and a government led by a PR man we have little such hope. If you’ve got kids then the  2000 number one single is well known in your household and you either love it or hate it. I dedicate this song to the hardworking helpdesk teams up and down the country who keep us all working and can often exhibit a positive “can we fix it? Yes we can” attitude. Don’t You Want Me, The Human League, 1981 – Email Ah 1981, the Tories are in power, everything is miserable, even the Christmas hit single, hang on, who said history never repeats itself? This droning single by people with very poor haircuts has become a cult classic. Like email the song has a nagging sense of foreboding about it. The Human League lyrics always seem to me to be asking you as the listener: “are you sure you want to carry on with this?” Email has the same affect, you can’t really get through the day without it, but there is little advantage in it these days either,  it just clogs your life up like some droning 80s song. Do they know it’s Christmas? Band Aid 1984 – Desktop image The song that literally changed the world mixes the heady sing along nature required of a Christmas hit single with the nagging fear that you as an individual haven’t done enough for the good of the world or your family. It’s like the desktop picture on  your PC, we all do it, put one there of our loved ones and hope it will spur us to spend more time at home, to turn off the Blackberry or iPhone when not in the office. But like the Band Aid song, you are filled with doubt that you haven’t really done enough.