It's been a rough few days for Barnes & Noble. First the rumors of a big announcement around Microsoft's partnership with the Nook were dashed Monday, and then we received at Tuesday morning's painful quarterly report.
Microsoft's Windows 8, with its Metro user interface, is designed to work on PCs, tablets, phones, and even game machines. Win or lose, it's the biggest rollout Microsoft has had since Windows 3.0 more than 20 years ago, and an entire industry is on the line.
If you think 2011 was a wild year for technology, just wait until you see what 2012 has in store for you. Here are three tech trends that will undoubtedly grow in relevance -- and investor profitability -- in the year ahead.