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Technology Is A Hell Of A Thing...

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posted on Apr, 17 2016 @ 09:50 PM
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Technology is really a Hell of a thing...

Before he died in the mid nineties my father would tell me stories about his childhood in a world where cars were somewhat uncommon to see, there were two radios in his hometown and television did not exist yet at all. I can vividly remember, as kid, hearing him talk and being totally unable to imagine such a primitive and distant world. The kicker was when he discussed not even having a refrigerator in his house as a kid - informing me they had a strange cabinet in their kitchen and that an ice man would come, once a week, to toss a HUGE block of ice into the bottom of that cabinet.

He might as well have been regaling me with tales from the Bronze age - because, to me, both periods seemed to be more alike than the world around me... The world that I knew. After all, we had a car - as did every person on our street! Just as everyone had a television! Ours was wicked! It took up the entire living room wall! The darn thing had a fancy, high end radio that picked up both AM and FM stations - the FM in stereo! Oh and it had a built-in record player as well! It even played all three speeds ( 33 1/3 / 45 / 78 rpm ) - so every single album and single in the house worked on it! But don't get distracted here. The real star of the show was the TV! Not only was it COLOR but also a massive NINETEEN INCHES!

( This is me regaling you with tales that might as well be from the Bronze age - because... )

Fast forward a couple of decades from that wall length abomination of a "home entertainment system" and we find ourselves in the early to mid nineteen-nineties. I have just purchased my first Pentium home computer and I am stoked! Months of scrimping and saving my hard earned cash went into planning this purchase. Getting my ex-wife to agree to not flat out divorce me over buying it involved full-on wars so brutal in their nature that they are still the stuff of legend in my family. But I had won those wars and was reveling in the spoils of my victory. Spoils that had not come easily or cheap. This thing was state of the art and had set me back just a shade under three thousand dollars. But the specs it sported were worth every single penny: That glorious system came, out of the box, with a 25 MHz 486sx processor! Smokin' fast! Obviously a system with that kind of horsepower would require enough memory to keep up, and this one came through with 512 megs of RAM and a MASSIVE 50 Mb hard drive! This freaking thing even had a CD player in it! Man! Talk about cutting edge! I'd started off with a home Pong game in the latter part of the seventies... I'd had TV based computers, video game systems and even a couple of legitimate home computers before buying this one - but all those things were childrens' toys when compared to this thing. I mean this thing had a built in 14.4k modem and the damn monitor supported something like 16 colors and a resolution of 640x480! It was seriously no joke!

Now fast forward a couple of decades from that overpriced potato I was so proud of and we find me sitting here typing this. Sitting on my monitor riser is what I think of as a really nice phone. It's a Samsung with solid specs and an absolutely outrageous price to performance ratio based upon what I paid for it. Certainly it's not top of the line - but it is the nicest cell phone I've ever owned. Oh, and this phone that I got on sale for $50 bucks ( 75% off of the regular price ) has 4 times the cores and about 48 times the per core computing power of the home computer I just discussed. Same story with RAM and ROM storage. Compared to even this phone that 1995-ish PC would literally work better as a portable space heater than a computing device.


So it follows that I probably rely on my phone for everything right? Nope. Compared to my current PC and even my two tablets, the phone is weak sauce. Hell, the three older PC's that currently reside next to my build table, unplugged and waiting to either become spare parts or maybe novelty items ( home theater, physical firewall, router, project box ) smoke the phone in power. This phone, that would have been considered science fiction level futuristic even fifteen years ago is now so mundane that, to me at least, it's still essentially just a phone - albeit one that texts and has a bad habit of beeping when I don't want it to.

These days I find myself telling my own kids stories about that nineteen inch TV and the world I grew up in where playing outside was the only option and where the day my dad brought home Pong changed my life... and they give me the same look I used to give my dad when he would tell me about not even having a fridge in his house as a kid.

And I'm OK with it. Partly because I am mature and experienced enough to understand that this is the natural progression. This is what it is to get old. Partly because I know that it won't be long before my grandkids are looking at my kids with the same disgusted and unbelieving looks about what life is like today. And Hell... it won't surprise me a bit if my grandkids stare blankly at me as I tell them that, by God, I refuse to get any damned implants and don't care if they want me to be able to talk to me just by thinking of me! They can take the time to call me on a device or type out a message. Otherwise... Humbug!

In the end... I think the scariest thought is that museums probably, right now, definitely include the stuff from my dads childhood. The non-electric "ice box". The ancient radio that he had to visit a neighbors house just to hear... those 1920's cars he would see from time to time. I also guess that much of my own childhood is probably sitting in a museum right now. The original Pong machine... the damned 9 foot long 19" TV. Even that 486sx I bought as a younger adult at a time that truly doesn't feel like it was so long ago.

How long before this phone merits a shelf in the "tech of yesterday" display? How long before I wake up and realize that I'd feel more at home in a museum than out here?

Technology is really a Hell of a thing.




posted on Apr, 17 2016 @ 10:09 PM
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I think the scariest thought is that museums probably, right now, definitely include the stuff from my dads childhood.


They do. I just went to one.

I was just talking about this with my Grandmother (who is in her nineties) the other day. I wanted to check on my dog so I pulled out my phone and checked the camera at home. Then I explained that I have a camera and smoke detector that alert me of events and can control a lot of my lights from anywhere with an internet connection then asked if she thought it was weird. She's actually pretty good on her laptop and up to date with most things and I got the impression that while thinking back the stuff we have now seems crazy, it's a pretty slow progression and not all that shocking until you really think about it.

I'm 31 and still remember when having a PC at home was kind of a big deal. Especially if you had the internet. I can't remember how old I was when we got our first one, I think like 6 or something. Now my phone just blows that enormous box out of the water, wirelessly. It's a little nuts when you think about it, but not much has really staggered me. I will say when I saw the first ads for the iPhone using the internet like normal it was pretty exciting. Old mobile internet was terrible. That and flat screens. I still think they seem sexy and new.



posted on Apr, 17 2016 @ 10:16 PM
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Hey Heff great to 'see' you!
I hear you, I am older but returned to college and am a student but also an assistant there. Sometimes the kids amaze me (and not in a good way-haha) and it makes me realize how different things were not so very long ago.
You probably heard about the 8 track tape and the bomb squad being called-- Lol!!

ETA link Dance explosion
edit on 17-4-2016 by Starcrossd because: added link



posted on Apr, 17 2016 @ 10:23 PM
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Started with the old Vic 20. Every time something new came out , I had to have it. Was told once while shopping for a larger HDD for my Tandy Sensation that 147 mb of HDD space would be all I ever needed. Now I am setting here with 64gb of ram (the Sensation came with a 40mb HDD) , 3 TB of hdd space (see previous parentheses) and dual video cards that each have more video ram than my computer had memory around the year 2000.

And dang , the prices. I spent well over $200 to be one of the first to have that 147mb HDD.Now I didnt even pay that much for one of my 1 TB drives

I like technology...



posted on Apr, 17 2016 @ 10:49 PM
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a reply to: Gothmog

I just need it to run word, email and look at porn. Here's $10k.



posted on Apr, 17 2016 @ 11:15 PM
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a reply to: Hefficide

Just be careful not to go all Ted Kaczynski on us, Heff.




posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 12:24 AM
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a reply to: Hefficide

havent seen u in awhile, cant even remeber if we are in good standing either way good to see u again.....i think? personally i wish we still rode horses and carried swords



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 12:37 AM
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a reply to: Hefficide

Great read, though not sure why a "rant". Still.......

Funny thing; my granddaddy had an icebox in the dining room of the house he lived in when I was a kid. A regular fridge in the kitchen, but I know, at least for a time, he used the icebox as well. It was just the "older fridge" to us kids. My mom, when young, lived in a house with a wood-burning stove. I still remember a story she told about lightning striking the house, and how they had soot all over. As a child, I recall the wonderful color television we had, of the huge sort in a wooden cabinet on legs, no remote, three channels, and how awesome we all considered it to be. The stereo was a big console as well, with record player and Am/FM. I recall seeing Pong, because a coworker of Dad's had one, but we didn't. Computers.....well, the one he worked on for his job took up most of a floor of a bog office building.

I get those looks you describe from my younger kids, regularly. Life without cell phones, or cable, or video game systems? Say it isn't so, Mom! When I describe how cool it was to have calculators in school you could carry around easily, I get even weirder looks. Remembering when 8-tracks were cool? Remembering when cassette tapes came onto the scene? Might as well be talking about ancient history, like the moon landing. Oh, wait..... When I do that, they ask about the dinosaurs. As in, which ones tasted better, and which did we ride.


They still don't get the appeal of sitting on the porch watching the sodium vapor lights come on in an evening. Or, and sadder, the fun of catching lightning bugs in a jar, and releasing them before going inside.

It's amazing how fast technology moves. My dad talked about that, and he didn't even see a lot of it. The computer he used at home, to 'dial in to work, you hooked to the phone. It was really cool, too. Heck, one the hubby had when we got married was really cool, with a "huge" 10GB HD.

Even older people these days can be funny. The friend who first showed me Windows was stunned I hadn't seen it before. it's like some can't comprehend the past at all. They are missing out. How amazing is it, after all, to look back, and see how things have advanced!? It's been a wild ride, and it's not showing down any. Stuff on Star Trek, that looked so impossible, is now reality. Watching it all happen is a real kick, most of the time. The kids will learn. One hopes. It'd be sad to think they wanted so much to adapt that they forgot to appreciate the wonder.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 01:27 AM
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originally posted by: Domo1
a reply to: Gothmog

I just need it to run word, email and look at porn. Here's $10k.

Why , thank you. But you can do that for a couple o hundred and a cheap laptop,
I am a big-time gamer....



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 01:30 AM
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Walking into my friend's dads office, and being told not to even breath hard because of the stack of punch-cards sitting on the corner of the desk, in proper order.

5.25" (360k or 720k) floppy disk, and the drives that sounded like the machine was going to explode. If you had a 3 1/2 inch floppy, it wasn't ever discussed out in public where the women could hear 'cuz rumors spread.

My first home computer was the IBM 8088. It came with Dos 3.1, no mouse, and no hard-drive. We booted off floppy-disks.
We played games in GWbasic, it had CGA graphics. The first hard-drive we got was 20MB.

It's only spiraled from there, from 4Mhz to 4.4Ghz, 640k base-memory, to 64GB RAM. 20mb, to 8TB. 1 CGA CRT @ 14" to 4 WXGA screens at 1920x1080..

Rotary phone, with a party line, to a smart phone with as much computing power as my desktop, and internet, and a private line where anyone can reach me any time.

CARS! Used to be all vacume pumps, and tube, and hoses, and fluids.. Now have more tech in them, then people realize. (Funny how gas milage hasn't really gotten any better tho!), and now we have electrical cars, with even MORE electronics in them.

I'm not boggled by any of this tho, I love technology. I however, believe it should always benefit humans, not be used to control them.

With the onset of Virtual Reality becoming mainstream, which I might add, has been something many a tech has dreamed of, I worry about what will be the future. Will our brains be hacked, next?



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 02:20 AM
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originally posted by: Hefficide


How long before this phone merits a shelf in the "tech of yesterday" display? How long before I wake up and realize that I'd feel more at home in a museum than out here?



That's the fine line we all walk isn't it Heff? Moving fast enough to stay relevant with the changing times, yet slow enough to appreciate the past we came from. We keep an eye on the rear view mirror while shifting the drive gears at 90.

I still have a record player/stereo that works, the records to play on it, paperbacks, a wheelbarrow, garden implements, a burn pit, a love for working the the earth and a good game of pool. I also have a Samsung phone that I couldn't earn a living without, Windows 10, Open Office and Excel proficiencies as well as direct deposit. I wish things were as simple as they were in the days when record players were the norm, but they're not, and I accept that. That acceptance allows me to learn everything I need to about modern tech. in order to keep paying the bills. But that's where it stops. My practical nature dictates that I learn what I need to about the modern tech for work purposes, but my play time and down time are decidedly old fashioned.

I work in the modern world and play in a museum.

www.youtube.com...

edit on 18-4-2016 by Taupin Desciple because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 05:33 AM
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a reply to: Hefficide

Heff,

When I was a little lad, I used to have some roller skates, a BMX, and a skateboard. Now, kids are rolling around on powered scooters, "hoverboards" (you know, seguays without the control column), and bicycles with dynamos built into them, that store energy for an extra boost of speed when needed. When I was a kid of ten, nearly no one below the age of twenty owned a cell phone. By the time I was thirteen, most of us did.

I used to have to wait fifteen minutes to get online, from dialing up, to actual connection. Now access is nearly instantaneous. And for that matter, it used to be that if someone wanted my information, they had to steal it from me, physically. Not so much nowadays.

No matter how old or young we are, the differences between today, and yesterday always appear enormous. But no matter which part of human history one hails from, the thing that unites humanity, everyone who has ever lived a day in this world, is that we all have the same needs, we just approach providing for them differently, and with arguably more, or less success than in times past, depending on ones view.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 05:42 AM
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a reply to: Hefficide

Burning chimneys!I used to see them all the time as a kid.The coalman!

I wasn't even allowed in before tea.

My friend got a BBC Micro when I was ten and I fell in love with Elite.😃Tape drives FTW.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 06:35 AM
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a reply to: Hefficide

That was a good rant, I can relate.

I have to admit, when I read the title I heard Rick James saying it in my head, 'Technology Is A Hell Of A Thing...'



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 06:57 AM
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a reply to: Gothmog

Ahhh....The ol' Vic20 with its cassette drive and 5k expandable memory cartridge.It had Moon Patrol-at the time that's all that mattered.




posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 08:40 AM
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a reply to: buckwhizzle
Another veteran....your medal





posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 11:14 AM
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a reply to: Hefficide
My grandparents had a TV like you described. I thought it was the coolest thing.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 02:18 PM
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originally posted by: Ericthedoubter
a reply to: Hefficide

Burning chimneys!I used to see them all the time as a kid.The coalman!

I wasn't even allowed in before tea.

My friend got a BBC Micro when I was ten and I fell in love with Elite.😃Tape drives FTW.


Burning chimneys!!!! step in time Mary Poppins

Wow Elite and Elite II, the greatest games ever, so much so, now that you have reminded me, I was in the middle of an assassination job and waiting just "off planet" for his reg number to appear so I could get him before he warped out, then have all those Police swarming all over me .......... Them were the days!! Now, was that my Spectrum ZX, the Amiga or my first PC? can't remember.

LOL, i was loyal to the Amiga and felt like a traitor when i had to get my first Windows PC, only switched because the old "bulletin board" (prior to the internet) stopped supporting the Amiga, i used to use a 9600 baud modem with an A4 sized footprint

CbG
edit on 2016-04-18T14:30:49-05:002016Mon, 18 Apr 2016 14:30:49 -0500bMonday3004America/Chicago162 by corblimeyguvnor because: (no reason given)

edit on 2016-04-18T14:35:23-05:002016Mon, 18 Apr 2016 14:35:23 -0500bMonday3504America/Chicago162 by corblimeyguvnor because: (no reason given)



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 02:33 PM
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a reply to: corblimeyguvnor

That was 2.The one with the plot-stopper.

I took a zillion pictures of that stupid installation.

I was on an Amiga 1200.



posted on Apr, 18 2016 @ 02:40 PM
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We had a rotary phone until I was in high school.



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