Every product here is independently selected by Mashable journalists. If you buy something featured, we may earn an affiliate commission which helps support our work.
2018 is nearly here. And while we wait to see what fresh joys and horrors it will bring, let’s take a minute to rewind and see how far we’ve come.
From Google to Harry Potter, the most popular hits, movies and innovations are turning the big 2-0 in 2018. Here are some of the things that started way back in 1998, and how they’ve changed the way we live today.
1. Google says goodbye to their teenage years.
Google will finally become an adult in 2018. The search engine was launched on Sept. 4, 1998. That means Google is just another young millennial like the rest of us.
2. The iMac was born.
The desktop computer made its debut in Aug. 1998 and has since been remade with new colors, new styles, and hefty new price tags.
3. Saving Private Ryan was released.
The war drama starring Tom Hanks, Edward Burns, and Matt Damon premiered on July 24, 1998. Fun fact: it was the last film edited on a non-digital editing system and won the Academy Award for editing. Take that, technology.
4. “Doo Wop (That Thing)” by Lauryn Hill was played over and over again.
The debut song off her Miseducation of Lauryn Hill album in Nov. 14 earned the artist two Grammy awards for the song (three more for the album), a Top 100 Billboard hit, and the anthem for so many of her fans.
5. Everyone tuned into Dawson’s Creek.
The teen drama first aired on Jan. 20, 1998 on The WB (which is now the CW by the way) and it was way before The OC, Gossip Girl or even One Tree Hill was even a thing.
6. Seinfeld came to an end.
The final episode aired on May 14, 1998 and according to IMDb, cable channel TV Land honored the show by not airing any programming in their time slot.
7. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone was released in the United States.
After a year of watching the UK enjoy Harry Potter and Philosopher Stone, Scholastic finally released it to the American wizards in 1998. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets was published in the UK this year as well.
8. Everyone’s favorite toy Furby was created.
The robotic owl monster that unexpectedly made noise for many of us was created in 1998 and was the most popular toy that year. 20 years later, the toy is still haunting children and adults everywhere.
9. Disney’s Animal Kingdom made its debut.
The theme park opened to the public on April 22, 1998 and became the fourth installment at Disney World. Also it’s one of the best. You just can’t go wrong with The Lion King or Avatar.
10. “Baby One More Time” by Britney Spears became our favorite karaoke song.
This song defined a whole generation of people. The single made its debut on Oct. 23, 1998 and Britney was also 16 years old (just put it into perspective how old we really are).
11. There’s Something About Mary made everyone laugh out loud.
This romantic comedy with stars Ben Stiller and Cameron Diaz had us rolling in the aisles. The Golden Globe nominee was one of the highest-grossing comedies of that year.
12. Total Request Live aired on MTV for the first time.
Ignoring the reboot of TRL, Total Request Live first aired on Sept. 14, 1998 with host Carson Daly and we were gifted with guest stars like Britney Spears, NSYNC, and the Backstreet Boys.
13. Armageddon became a blockbuster hit.
What do you get when you mix NASA, Bruce Willis, Ben Affleck, and a hit song by Aerosmith? The science fiction action film of 1998.
14. That ’70s Show graced our television with laughter.
On Aug. 23,1998, six teenagers from Wisconsin brought us comedy and scenes to dive into what it could’ve been like in the ’70s. Also, we can’t forget singing along to the theme song every time.
15. Holes brought readers into a new world.
No, not the movie starring Shia Lebouf. The book written by Louis Sachar is the young adult novel we grew to love and appreciate how one person’s name can also be their last name. Trippy right?
16. Sex and the City introduced us to, well, sex and the city.
The HBO hit show followed four women in New York City that celebrated women empowerment and friendship. Let’s be serious, we all wanted to be Carrie Bradshaw at one point in our lives.
17. Cranium helped us learn to use our brain for once.
In 1998, creators Whit and Richard were tired of playing games with no thinking involved, so they created a board game for players to essentially use their whole brain. 20 years later and the game still tears families apart and gets your mind turning.
18. Game Boy Color made gaming so much more colorful.
The Game Boy might’ve been revolutionary in 1989, but the game boy color changed the way we played.
19. Baby Bottle Pop sweeten the candy deal.
One of the weirdest, but greatest candy idea of 1998. Although it’s only pure sugar in a bottle, nobody can compete with the catchy jingle and sweet flavors.
20. “The Boy Is Mine” by Brandy and Monica had us shook.
This R&B hit had a duet between Brandy and Monica, solidifying the two powerhouse singers. Also, fun fact, according to the Herald Sun, the song was inspired by Michael Jackson and Paul McCartney’s “The Girl Is Mine” song.
Taraji P Henson: ‘Hollywood didn’t grasp my talent’
Harvey Weinstein obstructed her rise now, with her new film What Men Want, she is calling the shots. But what does she make of her Empire co-star Jussie Smolletts hate-crime controversy?
“On a December morning in Los Angeles, the sun blazes down on a large and abundantly decorated Christmas tree in the parking lot at Paramount Pictures. It is upstaged, though, by the actor Taraji P Henson, who swans past wearing an ensemble that calls to mind the futuristic fashion of the 1970s: steampunk sunglasses, a black tracksuit under a puffy gilet and chunky grey, orange and lime sci-fi pumps, possibly with rocket boosters in the soles. Her hair is arranged in tight braids, some piled on her head, others swishing around her shoulders.
As we take our seats in a brightly lit office upstairs, she removes from her flowery backpack a tub of beige mush. What is that, mashed banana? Nuh-uh, she says between mouthfuls. Its an oatmeal alkaline thing. Its got quinoa in it. I gotta be careful because I dont digest a heavy grain. She takes a sniff and laughs. It smells like dirt, it really does. She went vegan last year after a doctor told her it could reduce the chances of getting stomach cancer. You can do it if you have a good chef, she says encouragingly. I make a mental note to have a chat with mine……………………………………………………………………….”
Netflix vs. Steven Spielberg is a battle over the future of the movie experience
“New York (CNN Business)Netflix wants to change how you watch movies. Steven Spielberg wants to preserve the theatrical experience. Those two points of view are clashing, with Netflix pushing back against a plan that Spielberg reportedly has to create rules that could block the streaming giant from future Oscars contention.
Luke Perry: forever the thrillingly cool teen pinup
Perry never quite escaped the shadow of Beverly Hills, 90210. But this was not a failing it was proof of how seminal the show, and Perrys handsome rebel Dylan McKay, was to a generation
“Teen pinups who free themselves of their TV origins can be counted on one hand with fingers to spare: Ron Howard. Michael J Fox. Zac Efron.
Luke Perry never quite made it to those ranks, but thats no discredit to him. Despite working pretty regularly until the day he died which is more than a lot of teen stars can say he always knew his obituaries would read Dylan McKay has died, referring to the bad(ish) boy he played in the original series of Beverly Hills, 90210 from 1990-1995, and then again in 1998-2000 when he gamely, if through somewhat gritted teeth, revived the character. And so it has proved to be the case.