The Smartest Products of the Decade

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Products intended to set the world afire are launched all the time. Rarely do they live up to expectations. But on October 23, 2001, a new digital music device called the iPod changed the way we live now. It was expensive, bulky, and had that awkward scroll wheel thing, but it was a hit, laid the foundation for iTunes, the iPhone and the iTouch, brought Apple to the forefront of American companies, and was even featured in a MoMA design exhibit. Not bad for a simple little music player -- one that has sold more than 220 million units since its inception.