Vote Now for the Top Tech Innovations of 2012

Dani Fankhauser
Vote Now for the Top Tech Innovations of 2012
Vote now for the best innovations of 2012 in Mashable’s Innovation Index!

Vote now for the best innovations of 2012 in Mashable’s Innovation Index!

Help us celebrate the best products, apps and gadgets of 2012, in 15 categories. A special thanks to our curators, industry leaders who picked five nominations for their respective categories. Voting closes Dec. 10, when Mashable will announce the winners of the 2012 Innovation Index.

Click here to view this gallery.

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It's nearing the end of the year, and as we begin to celebrate the holidays, wrap up any business in the calendar year and set expectations for next year, it's worth taking a minute to look back: What did 2012 bring us?

In some cases, it's improvements on an old classic -- from baby monitors to thermostats, cameras to calendar apps, these products that are necessities in daily life are still around, but some entrepreneurs have set out to make them better. We appreciate that, and 's Innovation Index brings recognition to these tools that really stand out and caught our eye. Then, there's a few totally new inventions. Google Glass, the wearable computer isn't in our hands quite yet, and Microsoft Surface, a device that truly caught us by surprise.

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While many of these products have made their way into Mashable's coverage before, the Innovation Index nominees were handpicked by our curators, 15 experts and leaders in various fields. We approached each of our 15 curators and tasked them with selecting the most notable, impressive and innovative items that stood out to them.

An innovation stands out because we're impressed when we lay eyes on it. This is perhaps because it does something for us that wasn't possible before, and is inherently useful. Sometimes it's not something we personally use, but opens up new opportunities. Sometimes we're just impressed by the workmanship of the maker.

Take a look at this year's top innovations, gathered together in the gallery above. If you think there's one we missed, let us know in the comments. But don't forget to head over and vote for your favorite innovations -- the deadline is Monday, December 10, when we will be announcing the winners.

This story originally published on Mashable here.