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One internet year, One illustration,

20 defining events hidden within.

Can you spot them all?

?

artwork 2013

Too hard huh? Show the answers

Too hard huh? Show the answers

  • clue 1

    Harlem Shake. More

  • clue 2

    Commander Chris Hadfield performs David Bowie’s Space Oddity on board the International Space Station. More

  • clue 3

    Solid Concepts produces the first 3D printed metal gun. More

  • clue 4

    Computer programmer & activist Aaron Swartz dies. More.

  • clue 5

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel discovers her phone was tapped by the NSA. Allegedly. More

  • clue 6

    The Internet reacts to the US federal government shutdown with a picture of a child in a bear costume outside a zoo. More

  • clue 7

    Google’s Project Loon. More

  • clue 8

    Post-It & Evernote partnership. More

  • clue 9

    Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon, buys The Washington Post. More

  • clue 10

    Google retires its popular RSS reader. More

  • clue 11

    A hoax ad for iOS7 claims the software update will make Apple devices waterproof. More

  • clue 12

    The online black market Silk Road is closed down. More

  • clue 13

    What Does the Fox Say? More

  • clue 14

    Twitter IPO. More

  • clue 15

    Ryan Gosling won't eat his cereal. More

  • clue 16

    Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer‘s farewell speech. More

  • clue 17

    Dove Real Beauty Sketches. More

  • clue 18

    Volvo Trucks’ Epic Split video feat. Jean Claude Van Damme. More

  • clue 19

    ‘Selfie’ is Oxford Dictionaries’ word of the year. More

  • clue 20

    Worst twerk fail EVER. More

We made a twitter connected tshirt.Now you can make your own!

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20 things explained

From foxes to 3d guns, 2013 was a busy year for the internet

(Spoiler alert!)

We have chosen the funniest, craziest and most impressive things that happened on the Internet in 2013. Here are the stories behind them.

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#SelfieShirt

Say hello to Duckface. The t-shirt that takes selfies.

When we made #20Things we had no idea just how big the #selfie was going to become in 2014. Of all the 20 things that featured this year, the Selfie certainly made the biggest splash.

To celebrate the selfie and to demonstrate just how pervasive the selfie has become, we created the #SelfieShirt. A t-shirt featuring Brosmind's "duckface" illustration from #20Things that lights up whenever the hashtag #selfie is used on Twitter. Best of all we have released the source code for you to make your own!

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The Artists

Brosmind

2013

Brosmind

This year’s illustration is by Brosmind Studio which is made up of brothers Juan and Alejandro Mingarro. Their style is optimistic, often with a touch of humour. They use a mix of analogue and digital techniques involving lots of hand-drawn sketching to produce the finished illustration.

Check out the making of photos

Niark1

2012

Niark1

Niark1, AKA Sebastien Feraut is a graphic designer, painter and illustrator who lives and works in Paris. His distinctive style layers detail on detail – which made him the perfect choice for 20Things. Enjoy the intricate weirdness!

Ars Thanea

2011

Peter Jaworowski & Michal Lisowski

For the 2011 edition we turned to Ars Thanea, an amazing creative agency in Warsaw and sister agency to SYZYGY (creators of 20Things). With great experience creating CGI & digital art, Creative Director Peter Jaworowski and Artist Michal Lisowski brought a refreshing realistic style to the illustration of 20Things.

McBees

2010

McBess

McBess, AKA Matthieu Bessudo, is a French musician, artist & illustrator extraordinaire who lives in London. He usually only works in black and white, but made an exception for his cartoonish 20Things 2010.

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artwork 2010

Can't crack it? Reveal the answers

Can't crack it? Reveal the answers

artwork 2011

Can't crack it? Reveal the answers

Can't crack it? Reveal the answers

  • clue 1

    ROME 3 Dreams of Black - an interactive film by Chris Milk

  • clue 2

    The videogame Sword and Sorcery was released for the iPad.

  • clue 3

    Nyan Cat.

  • clue 4

    Update 11.10 - codename Oneiric Ocelot - was released for the open source software OS Ubuntu.

  • clue 5

    Two turkeys don’t make an eagle - Tweeted by Vic Gundotra describing the Microsoft/Nokia mobile deal.

  • clue 6

    Anonymous attacks the PlayStation Network.

  • clue 7

    Greenpeace uses the Internet to fund the building of a new Rainbow Warrior.

  • clue 8

    Dennis Ritchie, creator of the C programming language and co-creator of UNIX, dies.

  • clue 9

    Videogame Duke Nukem Forever launches – after 15 years of development.

  • clue 10

    Google replaces Helvetica with Comic Sans in search results as an April Fools joke.

  • clue 11

    The Force’ Volkswagen commercial .

  • clue 12

    Rebecca Black’s music video Friday went viral.

  • clue 13

    Casey Neistadt’s protest video , made because he got a ticket for riding outside the bike lane in NY.

  • clue 14

    The Hacker group LulzSec was formed and launched several attacks against corporate and public websites.

  • clue 15

    Google+ - Google’s social network - launches.

  • clue 16

    Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple, dies.

  • clue 17

    Facebook introduces the Timeline.

  • clue 18

    Wikeleaks releases secret files on Guantánamo prisoners.

  • clue 19

    YouTube video The Crazy Nastyass Honey Badger goes viral.

  • clue 20

    Old Spice Mano a Mano - The duel between the old Old Spice Guy and New Old Spice Guy Fabio.

artwork 2012

Can't crack it? Reveal the answers

Can't crack it? Reveal the answers

2013

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Welcome to 20Things

One picture, 20 things that happened on the Internet in the past 12 months.

Can you spot them all?

20Things is lovingly created on an annual basis by SYZYGY Group (www.syzygy.net), the mother ship for agencies SYZYGY, unique, Hi-ReS! and Ars Thanea.

Each year we pick 20 things that surprised and delighted us on the internet and commission an amazing illustrator to create an image that captures those 20 things. This is the fourth year we’ve paid homage to the best and weirdest of the Internet, this time in collaboration with the super-talented Spanish illustrators Brosmind. We do it because we love the Internet and the endless surprises it throws up.

If you enjoy 20Things, we’d love you to share it with your friend and colleagues.

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The making of 20things 2013

making things progress stage 1 making things progress stage 2 making things progress stage 3 making things progress stage 4 making things progress stage 5
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Thing No. 1
Harlem Shake

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20things animation

In early February 2013, this catchy 30-second dance becomes a YouTube phenomenon garnering over a billion views as people perform and upload their own Harlem Shake versions to the beat of DJ artist Baauer. More than 4,000 of the crazy dance videos popped up on YouTube every day at the height of the meme.

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Thing No. 2
Space Oddity

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20things animation

Released on May 23 2013 and sung from the US module of the International Space Station, Canadian astronaut Chris Hadfield uploads a zero-gravity YouTube cover of David Bowie's classic ‘sitting-in-a-tin-can’ track. To date, it has generated more than 22 million views.

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Thing No. 3
First 3D printed metal gun

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20things animation

Who needs a 3D-printed plastic gun when you can 3D print the real metal deal? In November 2013, rapid-prototyping firm Solid Concepts publishes a YouTube video demonstrating the production and testing of the world's first functional 3D-printed metal gun using 3D DMLS printing technology (direct metal laser sintering).

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Thing No. 4
Death of AARON SWARTZ

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20things animation

26 year-old Internet Hall of Famer, Aaron Hillel Swartz is found dead in his Brooklyn apartment in January 2013. Swartz, a much admired programmer and political activist, had been involved in the development of content sharing technology (RSS), online copyright reform (Creative Commons) and Reddit.

Author of the Guerrilla Open Access Manifesto, Swartz was facing prosecution following allegedly breaking into MIT’s computer network and downloading millions of scientific articles. Swartz committed suicide two days after a plea bargain failed.

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Thing No. 5
NSA PHONE TAPPING

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20things animation

On October 23 2013, and allegedly following online surveillance leaks from US NSA contractor Edward Snowden, German magazine Der Spiegel reports that the National Security Agency has been tapping the personal mobile phone of German Chancellor Angela Merkel. Merkel was, as expected, not impressed.

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Thing No. 6
THIS ZOO IS TEMPORARILY CLOSED

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20things animation

“This Adorably Sad Image Is Now The Official Photo Of The U.S. Government Shutdown” claims viral news site BuzzFeed in response to an evocative and widely-shared image of a child at the closed barrier of the Washington National zoo.

In October 2013, websites and services of the United States federal government were shut down following their failure to agree on a budget for the coming year. The photo captured the public mood and was picked up and widely shared on news sites.

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Thing No. 7
GOOGLE PROJECT LOON

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20things animation

Forget Skynet, this is Balloon-net. On June 16 2013, Google launches 30 balloons 27 km up into the stratosphere from New Zealand’s South Island. The goal? To test a new idea for bringing Internet access - and Google ads - to signal-saturated and remote areas.

Dubbed Project Loon with an associated ‘Baloon Clumping’ patent application, each of Google’s 15m diameter balloons successfully acted as a wireless Internet access point, providing 3G-speed Internet services to a 20km radius on the ground below.

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Thing No. 8
POST-IT NOTE EVERNOTE PARTNERSHIP

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20things animation

On September 26 2013 popular note-taking software company Evernote announces that it has teamed up with 3M to add digital functionality to 3M's classic Post-it Notes by making them scannable, importable, readable and sortable within Evernote.

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Thing No. 9
JJeff Bezos bought The Washington Post for $250M

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20things animation

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos purchases leading US daily newspaper The Washington Post for US$250 Million cash, completing the transaction on October 1, 2013.

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Thing No. 10
GOOGLE RETIRES READER in "spring cleaning"

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20things animation

On July 1 2013 and at a ripe old age of 7 years and 8 months, Google shuts down its market-leading RSS Google Reader service as part of spring clean and a refocusing of resources and talent on core products and services.

Despite a pool of loyal users, Google cited declining use as a motivation to consign Google Reader to the digital deadpool. Coming on the back of Apple’s removal of native RSS functionality from its own software, Google’s move was taken by some to be indicative of a market trend away from RSS news feeds and towards the social news feed.

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Thing No. 11
iOS7 WATERPROOF Prank

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social media twitter

Following a wave of news hype around Apple's new mobile software update, iOS7, a hoax ad surfaces, tricking some users into believing the new software would make their phones waterproof. It’s believed to originate from the popular 4chan image forum.

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Thing No. 12
SILK ROAD CLOSED

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20things animation

On 2 October 2013 the underground online marketplace Silk Road is shut down by the FBI and cryptocurrency Bitcoin balances from user accounts are seized. By the end of December 2013 a replacement Silk Road 2.0 was up and trading.

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Thing No. 13
WHAT DOES THE FOX SAY?

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20things animation

In September 2013, a music video promoting a Norwegian chat show goes global and viral on YouTube. Generating over 300 million views, the satirical video for I kveld med Ylvis asks the profound question of what sound foxes make (they yap, they can't bark).

The music video was produced by Stargate (Katy Perry, Rihanna, Jennifer Lopez), and performed by the two brothers who star in the chat show, Vegard and Bård Ylvisåker.

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Thing No. 14
Twitter has its IPO

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20things animation

On November 7 2013 Twitter goes live with its Initial Public Offering of 70 million shares to raise $1.8bn on the New York Stock Exchange. The opening bell is rung by X-men and Star Trek star Patrick Stewart and 9-year old child entrepreneur Vivienne Harr. The shares debut at $26.00 and close up 73% on the day at $44.90.

Although a distant 2nd behind Facebook ($16bn), the IPO landed Twitter the #2 spot for the biggest tech IPO to date ahead of Google ($1.7bn).

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Thing No. 15
RYAN GOSLING WON’T EAT HIS CEREAL

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20things animation

A series of six-second doctored Ryan Gosling movie clips are posted to Twitter's Vine video-sharing app and find viral fame in April 2013. The clips, posted by Scottish film director Ryan McHenry, feature superimposed spoons of cereal looming in on the Canadian actor.

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Thing No. 16
STEVE BALLMER FAREWELL SPEECH

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20things animation

Self-declared ‘emblem of an old era’ Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer makes a tearful farewell speech to employees on September 26 2013, backed by Dirty Dancing track ‘I’ve had the time of my life’.

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Thing No. 17
DOVE REAL BEAUTY ‘SKETCHES’ AD

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20things animation

Viral lightening does strike twice; beauty brand Dove releases a another viral hit in April 2013 for its ‘Real Beauty' campaign and garners 163 million views on YouTube, making it the most watched video ad ever. The feel-good ad features an FBI sketch artist in a social experiment that shows women that they are more beautiful than they think.

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Thing No. 18
THE EPIC SPLIT FEAT. Jean Claude VAN DAMME

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20things animation

An ageing but buff Muscles from Brussels, Jean-Claude Van Damme, goes viral on YouTube in a November 2013 Volvo Trucks ad. Aiming to demonstrate the stability and precision of Volvo steering, the ad features JC performing a full side splits between two reversing Volvo trucks.

Topping 100 million views within a month, the Volvo ad overtook Volkswagen’s popular ‘The Force’ to become the most popular auto campaign online to date.

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Thing No. 19
SELFIE - Word of the year

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20things animation

In November 2013 the influential Oxford English Dictionary names the ‘Selfie’ international word of the year. To crown the iconic status of these self-portrait mobile snaps, US president Obama stars in the 2013 Selfie of the Year by snapping himself at Nelson Mandela's funeral. Owners of the Selfies-at-Funerals site are delighted.

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Thing No. 20
WORST TWERK FAIL EVER

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20things animation

A YouTube hoax goes viral in September 2013 featuring stunt actor Daphne Avalon appearing to catch fire whilst 'twerking' at home. Revealed as a hoax on US TV talk show Jimmy Kimmel Live!, a YouTube clip of the 'Big Reveal' garners more views than the original 9 million views for the hoax.