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25 Most Important Tech Icons of the Past Quarter-Century

Nominate 25 Digital Mavericks Who Will Shake Up the Future

(September 18, 2018) -- Today, WIRED kicks off a month-long celebration of its 25th anniversary with the publication of the “WIRED@25” October issue. WIRED editors have selected 25 icons of the digital revolution who have had the biggest impact on the worlds of technology, science, and business over the past quarter-century. Additionally, each icon has nominated a maverick, visionary, or rising star who will shake up the next 25 years.

“With each pairing, we’ve tried to create some kind of conversation between the two,” writes Nicholas Thompson in his editor’s letter. “Our hope is that in 2043, you’ll go back through the choices we made in this issue and see some that make sense and some that, in retrospect, seem insane. That’s the way it’s always been with WIRED.”

The WIRED25 icons are:

· Bill Gates, nominating Stephen Quake, professor, Stanford bioengineering and physics

· Joi Ito, nominating Neha Narula, researcher, MIT Media Lab digital currency initiative

· Jeff Bezos, paired with an eternal 10,000-year clock

· Jaron Lanier, nominating Glen Weyl, researcher, Microsoft

· Apple’s Infinite Loop, paired with Apple Park

· Melinda Gates, nominating Shivani Siroya, founder and CEO, Tala

· Peter Thiel, nominating Palmer Luckey, founder, Oculus

· Sean Parker, nominating Alex Marson, biologist, UC San Francisco

· Jill Tarter, nominating Margaret Turnbull, astronomer and gubernatorial candidate

· Marc Benioff, nominating Boyan Slat, founder, Ocean Cleanup

· Jony Ive, nominating Evan Sharp, head of design, Pinterest

· Anne Wojcicki, nominating Keller Rinaudo, founder, Zipline

· Alexis Ohanian, nominating Jewel Burks, cofounder, Partpic

· Sebastian Thrun, nominating Sam Altman, president, Y Combinator

· Mark Zuckerberg, nominating Dreamers

· Jack Dorsey, nominating ProPublica

· Jennifer Pahlka, nominating Anand Giridharadas, author of Winners Take All

· Elizabeth Blackburn, nominating Janelle Ayres, molecular physiologist, Salk Institute

· Kai-Fu Lee, nominating Fei-Fei Li, AI researcher

· Kevin Systrom, nominating Karlie Kloss, founder, Kode With Klossy

· Edward Snowden, nominating Malkia Cyril, founder, Center for Media Justice

· Satya Nadella, nominating Jenny-Lay Flurrie, chief accessibility officer, Microsoft

· Susan Wojcicki, nominating Geetha Murali, CEO, Room to Read

· Jennifer Doudna, nominating Jiwoo Lee, sophomore, Stanford

· Sundar Pichai, nominating R. Kim, chief medical officer, Aravind Eye Hospital

WIRED’s 25th-anniversary celebration will culminate with a once-in-a-lifetime event in San Francisco from October 12–15. The event will bring the issue to life with a series of exclusive keynotes and game-changing conversations with WIRED25 icons. More information is available at

*Cover image is attached for your use

*Photos of Bill Gates, Jack Dorsey, and Mark Zuckerberg (photo credit: Michelle Groskopf/WIRED) are available here:

*Additional photos available on request


Tuesday, September 18, 2018