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Tech Turkeys of 2013
Thanksgiving of 2013 is upon us, and you know what that means... holiday gift lists and end of year news re-cap articles!
But before we get there, we think it would be best to talk about Turkeys. Not Thanksgiving Turkeys, the juicy, delicious kind with savory gravy that everyone loves. We're talking about TECH TURKEYS, the worst products and services that have graced the pages of ZDNet over the past year.
This year, our Turkeys come in two flavors: Those that truly displayed their Gobble-Gobble from a purely technical perspective (Type 1) and those that failed to realize revenue or garner significant industry adoption (Type 2).
So without further ado, from the Editors and Contributors of ZDNet, the TECH TURKEYS of 2013.
Healthcare.gov, the Obamaturkey
We begin our list of 2013 Tech Turkeys with the biggest Type 1 Tech Failure of them all.
There's nothing more amusing than watching a giant government fall flat on its face implementing an IT project. There is an exception, of course. That's when the IT project disrupts the operation and business model of the largest industry in the history of mankind and the healthcare coverage for a large percentage of Americans who need ongoing care.
It's not that America's healthcare and health insurance didn't need reform -- it desperately did. The majority of bankruptcies in the U.S. have been filed because of healthcare-related financial hardship and the majority of those were filed by people who had paid-up health insurance policies. So healthcare reform was an absolute necessity.
No, the turkey here was how our beleagured government went about accomplishing (or, rather, not accomplishing the task). It all went wrong. The front-end Web site couldn't stay on long enough for anyone to use it. The back-end service providers didn't really want to be participating, so there was inherent friction in even the interoperability, and, of course, this was the most politically charged IT project probably in world history.
What's the future of Healthcare.gov? Prognosis isn't good. Even though the leading opponent to the existence of the service, John Boehner, spent an afternoon trying to sign up, and the Affordable Care Act has weathered every challenge imaginable, the simple fact is this project took just about every single IT best practice and threw them out the window.
-- David Gewirtz