2011 -- how was it for you? From the Arab Spring and the Fukushima disaster to Steve Jobs, the iPhone 5 and the Amazon Kindle Fire it's been a momentous and turbulent year, with the trends and topics that gripped us revealed by Google in its annual look at what we searched for in the past 12 months.
Technology is well and truly on our minds: some of the most-searched terms around the world include the iPad 3 and iPhone 5 -- which don't even exist!
Many of us searched the web for more information on Apple boss Steve Jobs, who in August quit the company he founded and sadly died later in the year.
The global list of tech treats reveals our insatiable lust for the next cool thing, whether we were hunting for news on the iPad 3 and iPhone 5 or the Sony NGP, which became the PlayStation Vita, and the Samsung Nexus Prime, now known as the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. The HTC Sensation, doomed HP TouchPad and iPhone 4S round out the list, topped by the Amazon Kindle Fire. One suprise entry to the list of most-searched-for consumer technology is SPB Shell 3D, an Android interface.
Here in Britain, the fastest rising subject was the Royal Wedding, but apart from celebs including YouTube sensation Rebecca Black, dull-as-ditchwater troubador Ed Sheeran and warbler Adele, it was technology that rose the most. Groupon, the iPad 2 and iPhone 5 lit up Google, while FIFA 12 and Minecraft finish off the list of rising stars.
Google is pleased to note that Google+ is one of the worldwide rising stars, while rival social networks pack the list of searches in decline. European social networks Meinvz, Netlog and Nasza Klasa suffered this year -- but none fell as far as poor old MySpace.
We also turned to Google to hide our ignorance, asking what is probate, Zumba and AV. Technology is once again well-represented, with Googlers asking what the heck is iCloud, and what are cookies. And, er, what is scampi.
What defined 2011 for you? Tell us in the comments or on our Facebook page.