The March of Technology

I remember when home computers were just a far-off dream.

I remember 8” disks, 5 1/4” floppy’s and the amazing 3.5” ‘floppy disks.

I remember reel-to-reel tape drives (but not ticker tape, I’m not THAT old).

I remember getting our first ever home computer, which had 48Kb of ram, hooked up to the TV and used a normal cassette player to store and retrieve information.

I remember when Bill Gates said 1Mb of ram was more than anyone could ever need… and I wholeheartedly believed him.

I remember being envious of the people who could get 256Kb ram chips for their computers when all I could afford was a couple of 64Kb ones.

I remember 186’s, 286’s, 386’s, 486’s and the revolutionary Pentium class processors.

I remember making money building x386 PC’s at home and selling them through an ad in the newspaper.

I remember when Windows 3.11 was the most advanced stable operating system available on the mass market for home computers.

I also remember when Windows 95 revolutionized the world… and yet Windows 3.11 was still more stable.

I remember getting my first cell phone. The Motorola MR1 – it had a sim card the same size as a credit card and was about 3 inches thick.

I remember when my wife and I went to a computer fair in England and bought our first 1Gb hard drive. I couldn’t conceive how I was ever going to use that much space but it was way better than the 40Mb drive I had at the time and I managed to talk my wife into it. It cost us the equivalent of about $130.

I remember RS-232 ports, com 1 and com 2, the amazing parallel port.

I remember 3200 baud modems, and when 14.4k modems were lightning fast.

I remember meeting my wife online using a 14.4k modem, actually.

I remember green screen monitors and how the rich kids had ‘RGB’ screens while the rest of us had black-and-white.

I remember when a 14” monitor was incredibly big and SVGA was awesome resolution.

I remember when digital watches seemed like a good idea.

I remember my first smartphone, the original Orange SPV (also known as the HTC Canary). I was so excited I made up a song about my new piece of techno-wizardry.

I remember making up an even better song when I got the Orange SPV E500, which actually ran MS Windows!

I remember lots of things… and now I’m writing this on a laptop which has as much ram in it as all the other computers I’ve personally owned in the last 20 years put together and a hard drive so big everything I’ve ever written, and every digital photo I’ve ever taken are lost in it’s cavernous capacities. It’s incredibly fast and flexible and has a beautiful 15.4” monitor – and yet it’s way behind the times.

Hooked up to it, syncing information right now, I have one of the latest pieces of innovation, the iPhone 4 – a phone which some day I will look back on and laugh at its pre-historic inadequacies but yet right now is the most incredible piece of technology I’ve ever owned.

I remember where computer technology has come from and I will continue to do so as it continues to progress and evolve at a staggering pace but today I want to ask you:

What do you remember about technology?