Here's how to vote for your IT greats

Reader poll: Who and what has really made the difference in the past four decades?


To celebrate Computer Weekly's 40th anniversary, we want you to choose the people, organisations and technologies that have helped to shape the IT landscape.

Most influential people

There are plenty of possible candidates, but who do you think really stands out? Bill Gates obviously, but what about Linus Torvalds, the Finnish software engineer who gave the world Linux? Or, in a male-dominated industry, one possibility might be Stephanie Shirley, founder of Xansa, who pioneered new work practices and blazed a trail for female IT professionals.

Most important organisations

Some of the pioneering firms from the 1960s and 1970s are still going strong, but are they the industry's most important organisations, or are today's web pioneers of greater significance to technology's future?

Key software

The list of software technologies it is hard to imagine life without seems to grow longer by the day. Where would finance departments be without spreadsheets? Where would the internet be with HTML? Where would we all be without e-mail?

Iconic hardware

From desktop PCs to the development of mobile telephony, there are plenty of compelling candidates for inclusion in a crowded field. Have barcodes made more of an impact on our lives than routers?

Vote online

To take part in our anniversary polls, visit, click on each of the category headings and select your top three from the shortlist of 10 names provided. There is also space to add your own choice if it has not made our shortlist.

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