The Nordics are the World’s biggest contributors to technology.


Individually, the contributions that Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Finland and Iceland have made to the Internet and technology are extremely impressive.

However, combined together as a region, their achievements are nothing short of mind-blowing, and made even more notable when you consider that even with five countries, the total population only stands at 26 million.


Undoubtably, Denmark’s biggest contribution to the web has been in programming, with the creators of C++ and Ruby on Rails both hailing from its shores.

C++ was created by Bjarne Stroustrup and is the foundation for operating systems for pretty much everything including; servers, mobile phones, routers, databases, cars and airplanes. While, the open source Ruby on Rails from David Heinemeier Hansson is the foundation that Twitter, Github and Shopify have been built on.


Finland have made their own major open source contributions with the development of Linux one of the most prominent examples of free and open source software collaboration, with the author Linus Torvalds going on to develop Git. Nokia was at the forefront of technological innovation in the nineties, and they are also home to Rovio, the team behind Angry Birds, the best selling paid app of all time. Helsinki is now a hot-bed of exciting startups, with Supercell leading the charge and is increasingly staking a claim and challenging Berlin and London to being Europe’s dominant startup hub.


However, Sweden possesses a City which could arguably be considered already on a par with those two in Stockholm. Birthplace of iZettle, and Spotify, Sweden is also widely regarded as the number one game producers in the world, including Mojang, makers of Minecraft, and King.com the leaders in the social gaming space, and producers of Candy Crush. Sweden, along with Denmark, were also a prominent part of the beginning of Skype, and they also share the origins of MySQL the worlds most popular open sourced database with Finland.


In Norway, technology has been used to utilise safe drinking water, and Vosswater have established themselves as the leader in cutting-edge water innovation. Norway also gave birth to Siri, the personal assistant software developed by Dag Kittlaus, and subsequently sold to Apple in 2010 for a rumoured $200 million. The Norwegian software company Opera produce the worlds most popular cloud-assisted mobile web browser.


In terms of users to population Iceland is first globally in terms of internet users, social network users and in providing available internet access in schools, a true digital nation if ever there was one and consistently topping the polls as the country with the most internet freedom.

Natural air conditioning, 100% renewable energy and their undersea fibre optic lines have also made it a prime location for data storage, with International companies beginning to host their data there despite being thousands of miles away.


The sheer quantity and quality of technological innovation going on within these five countries deserves to be told in a dedicated manner rather than down the sidebar of another story featuring an over-hyped startup raising an obscene amount of money, which is why I am launching The Nordic Web.

The Nordic Web is a digital publication taking an in-depth look at the Nordic technology scene, with features and analysis on ideas, innovation, design and startups originating from the region.

By looking at the current innovations in the Nordics, it is possible to predict the future technological changes that will affect our day to day lives globally.

Our writers include current contributors to Wired and Forbes, and will provide the quality in-depth coverage of The Nordic technology scene that it deserves, not just for the inhabitants of the region but also for the rest of the world.


Keep up to speed with the Nordic technology scene and be notified of our launch by signing up here.

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We have a temporary home on Medium until our launch, which can be found here