With most folks focused on Facebook apps or the latest YouTube craze, a lot of incredible projects go unnoticed for way too long. Several months ago someone on irc.freenode mentioned reCAPTCHA to me, an amazingly novel idea that keeps spammers out while digitizing literary works.
I remember how excited I was when Mac OS X was initially released. Finally I had real development tools available on my platform of choice. I could run a web server with middleware to develop database-driven web sites on my laptop. The only problem was that although having Unix file management skills, at the time, I had absolutley no experience compiling the required Unix software from source.