For the first time I can recall, the big tech stories of the year were also major political stories.

Edward Snowden's revelations about the National Security Agency and the botched debut of HealthCare.gov dominated President Barack Obama's end-of-year news conference. I don't need to rehash the details, but both issues were the reason Obama summoned tech leaders -- including Yahoo (YHOO) CEO Marissa Mayer, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg,