I'm forever linking to my ZDNet blog from my Read/WriteWeb blog, so I'm sure it's OK to link to R/WW every once in a while. Best Web Companies and Innovators of 2005 is a follow-up to piece I wrote in 2004. Below is the list of 'winners', with the 2004 winners in brackets:
Best Web BigCo: Yahoo! (2004 - Google): "This year Yahoo acquired 3 of the trendiest Web services: Flickr (my best LittleCo in 2004), del.icio.us (my runner-up last year!) and konfabulator. As my post earlier this week illustrated, Yahoo has integrated RSS into a whole suite of products: from mobile, to news, to podcasts, to email. They also released Yahoo 360 (a social networking platform), My Web 2.0 (a relatively unsuccessful imitation of del.icio.us), a Podcasting service, Yahoo Shoposphere, ... too many things to mention or link to! They're also still the world's top website. Yep, Yahoo! is the Best Web Bigco of 2005 and I defy anyone to argue with that."
Best Web LittleCo: 37Signals (2004 - Flickr): "...the one LittleCo that really stood out in the Web world in 2005, based on the buzz it created for itself and its almost slavish 'less is more' design philosophy, was 37Signals. Their flagship product is Basecamp, a web-based project management product. Their other claim to fame is Ruby on Rails, an open source web development framework created by 37Signals partner David Heinemeier Hansson. Ruby on Rails got rave reviews from developers throughout 2005 and at one point it seemed like every 'cool' Web startup was using Rails!"
Most Promising Web Company/Innovator: Memeorandum & Digg.com (2004 - Feedburner): "When I think about what will be the big products and services in 2006, I look (as I did last year) to RSS services and also next-generation search services. There's a real need for search services that can not only aggregate the vast amount of content on the Web - but effectively filter and organize that content based on individual preferences."
There are more details on Read/WriteWeb. Hope you enjoy it and please feel free to comment in the Talkback section here on what Web companies or innovators you were most impressed by in 2005.