• Despite the 34-day Lebanon War in July, the high-tech industry continues to grow quickly. Aside from the $4 billion Iscar buyout, Hewlett-Packard purchases Mercury Interactive for $4.5b, the largest acquisition of an Israeli high-tech company.

• New tech companies founded this year include Internet advertising company Outbrain and WIX, a web-development platform that now has 90 million users in 190 countries.

• In biotech, work began to develop Exelon, the first drug approved for treating mild to moderate dementia associated with Parkinson’s disease.

• Israel’s national emergency medical service, Magen David Adom in Israel, is inducted as an official member society of the Red Cross and Red Crescent movement after years of worldwide humanitarian aid as far back as World War II. Founded in 1930, MDA now counts 17,000 Arab-Israeli, Druze, Bedouin, Jewish, Muslim and Christian volunteers and 3,000 staffers, and also runs Israel’s National Blood Bank supplying hospitals and the IDF. MDA shares expertise and volunteers with many countries, including Haiti and Nepal after massive earthquakes.

• Eli Beer starts United Hatzalah of Israel, a network of volunteer neighborhood EMTs who often travel on ambucycles – refitted motorcycles nimble enough to weave through traffic. Today the organization has 4,000 EMTs, certified first responders, paramedics and doctors dispersed throughout Israel. The organization includes a mix of religions and races, and has won many awards. It has also taken part in many international lifesaving aid missions in the wake of disasters around the world and trains paramedics in other countries.