A special New Year’s edition of links

Wired gives us their Top 20 iPhone applications of 2009.
Last.fm gives us their Top 40 artists of 2009.
Susannah Breslin gives us her top blog posts of 2009. Adam P Knave gives us his Top 10 comics of the decade.
2009: A year in reading. The top ten things that should have happened, but didn’t in 2009.
National Geographic provides us with the Top Ten fossils of 2009. Need a New Year’s resolution? Here you go.
Wired gives us 5 legal cases that defined the musical landscape in 2009. Movies! Ten movies you might have seen this year, but shouldn’t have. And Ten movies you probably haven’t heard of, but should watch.
Cracked gives us their top 5 … everything of the decade.
The Best of the Big Bad Blog

Best of the Blog 2009

The Big Bad Blog is wrapping up our first year, and we now take a quick look back at the most popular bits from the blog this year.

Honorable mention: Rule Obsessions
We have written quite a bit about roleplaying here at the Big Bad Blog over the past year, but none of these articles have made our top five. Our look at those who are obsessed by the canonical text of the rulebooks proved to be the most read of these articles in 2009.

#5: The Bill Gates mock facebook page
This would seem to require no further introduction. Simply sharing a photo found online was the fifth most popular item on the blog in its first year. With 423 views, it was the only member of the top five not to garner 500 views.

#4: War of the Tubes

Back in August, I discovered that there exists a Cardboard Tube Fighting League, with chapters worldwide. It’s a fantastic idea, and a whirlwind of research quickly led to what would become the fourth most read article on the Big Bad Blog in its first year.

#3: Imprison the tourists
The first article on the Big Bad Blog to gain over 1,000 views, this was the first piece on what was to become a repeating theme on the Big Bad Blog — the harassment of photographers by the police.

Not surprisingly, this theme arrived around the same time as my photography hobby began and the photoblog category truly sprang to life.

#2: The Microsoft Dilemma
In June this year, it was reported that Microsoft would have to ship Windows 7 without Internet Explorer in Europe — but left to the company to determine how this was to be done. Microsoft later came up with a solution, and the European Commission dropped its case against them in December.

#1: The Marshmallow March
Shortly after buying my Nikon D300, the London Marathon was scheduled with the route passing only two blocks from my flat here in London. I wandered out to the race with my new camera, determined to take a ton of fantastic photos.

Nicole had told me that two of her friends were going to be running the race dressed as the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man, and asked me to get a photograph of them. So I waited for them, long past the time when I would have otherwise left.

I was not disappointed — her two friends rounded the corner carrying a giant Stay Puft on a metal frame. I snapped away, and dutifully created the resulting blog post shortly following the race.

What a reaction I received.

I simply could not believe it, and continually refreshed my stats to watch the number of views increase. They finally topped out just short of 25,000 views — although that milestone has since been reached via the occasional random web surfer passing through. People were coming in from all over the internet, and it was fascinating to surf back to these places and see people coming in.

The marshmallow march shows how strange the Internet can be. Completely random things can simply catch lightning in a bottle, and what you wrote — or your photograph — can suddenly be everywhere.

Prior to this, I had only had approximately 5,000 views in the life of the Big Bad Blog — three photographs combined to get five times that number in approximately 72 hours. Today, that article still counts for nearly a third of all visits to the Big Bad Blog.

Hence, the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man is crowned the champion of the Big Bad Blog for 2009:

The morning coffee and the dancing robot

A new year — a new decade — approaches. Like everybody else, you’re probably wondering what did I miss out on reading over these past ten years? Never fear, dear reader — The Guardian has anticipated this concern, and is here to help with the decade’s best unread books.

I cannot figure out why anybody in the United States uses an AT&T phone. They are now telling potential customers that they cannot have the world’s most popular phone if they live in New York City, because New York City has insufficient infrastructure.

We also present (to our bling-loving math geek readers): Rings based on the Fibonacci sequence.