Sunday afternoon. Hubby is out at work and the boys are playing on their Xboxes before bed. Hubby decided that he wanted a break from driving (taxi driver), so he calls me to see how the boys are doing.
It wasn’t long in to the call when I couldn’t hear him talking… I thought he had drove through a “dead zone”, so the network had dropped. I stated my thoughts with my usual, “I don’t know if you can still hear me, but I can’t hear you… If you can hear me, call me back…” He called me back straight away, but I still couldn’t hear anything. Thinking it was a glitch, I repeated my previous statement, but saying that I would call him back.
I called him back, but there was no ringtone… The display was showing that he had answered the call. I said, “I haven’t a clue if you can hear me, but I think there’s something wrong with my phone. Give me ten minutes, and I’ll try to call you back…”
I tried a few things. I called the house phone, and I couldn’t hear anything from my mobile – but I could through the house phone. I then had the idea of trying to play some music… I went to the YouTube app, and pressed play on one of the recommended videos. It started to play, but no noise. I repeated the experiment with Google Music… Nothing. Then, all of a sudden, my mobile data stopped working. I couldn’t connect to the internet… Great. I quickly texted hubby to say “my phone’s broke”, and to call me on the house phone if he needed me.
Monday morning. My phone is well and truly “dead”. After some research last night, I had found the phone that I wanted, and it would come with a free fitness watch. It would mean that I would have to take on another contract (3 years), but I would get a “top of the line” phone… I was ok with that, so hubby and I went to the phone shop to pick up my beautiful Huawei P20 Pro and Huawei GT Smart Watch.
All of the above had me thinking… I am the last generation of so many “ends” of technology, and I am the first generation of many, many more. I was planning on making a list of all of the technologies that have come and gone, but I’d just be here all day… Instead, here’s a list of just a few:
Minidisc was a magneto-optical disc-based data storage format offering a capacity of 74 minutes and, later, 80 minutes, of digitized audio or 1 gigabyte of Hi-MD data. They were first introduced in 1992, and it was hoped that they would replace the delicate compact discs. Unfortunately, the Minidisc didn’t gain as much popularity as was first thought, and the last Minidisc was produced in 2013.
MP3. There are many contradictory answers, as to when MP3’s first appeared, although I have discovered that the first MP3 player was produced in 1997. Therefore, I think it’s safe to say that the MP3 came out prior to when I left high school! The MP3 is still a popular choice of audio today.
Audio CD’s were introduced to the world a lot earlier than people think! They were first available to purchase in 1982; but, as with a lot of new technology, were rather expensive to own. As the popularity increased, primarily because the compact disc could hold more information than a cassette, the prices went down, and almost everyone owned a CD player.
Cassette tapes were first introduced in approximately 1962, but were all the rage in the 80’s. The personal “Walkman” was first released in 1980, and was a great source of listening to music “on the go”. By 1993, CD’s were outselling the cassette tape, and by 2000, less than 2% of the worlds’ audio purchases were on cassette.
8-tracks were another popular form of listening to music, but were not able to be “portable”. The 8-track cartridges were common in car radio systems, and were “in season” from 1964 to 1988.
LP / Records. In 1888, a gentlemen named Emile Berliner invented the flat disc record. These very first discs were produced of a vulcanised rubber. Later he discovered that a mixture of shellac (a secretion from the lac beetle) and slate dust produced an extremely hard wearing but very brittle surface and from this the 78rpm disc was developed. The slate dust was used because the older acoustic gramophones used steel needles with a pick-up weight of up to 200 grams and the slate helped grind the needle to fit the groove more closely. In 1927, a vinyl record was used for the very first talking picture (movie with audio) – “The Jazz Singer”. Since 1927, popularity increased, and the LP was often sent to POW camps, during the second world war, to keep up prisoner morale. Despite the devastation caused to vinyl sales by the rapid rise in popularity of the CD, the format still thrives among keen record collectors and club disc jockeys today.
Betamax and VHS were first released in 1975, and although VHS are still available (rarely though), they faded out with the release of the DVD in 1995 (DVD’s have also decreased in popularity, since the introduction of the Blue-Ray in 2003).
The Internet is another thing that has been around a lot longer than people think. We can trace the development of the first internetworking back to the early 1960’s, and was developed primarily for business use only. Commercial Internet Service Provider’s (ISP’s) began to emerge in the late 1980’s / early 1990’s, and by 1995, the internet for home usage was fully commercialised throughout the UK.
The list is not exhaustive, and I will address this topic again, after having done more research. In the meantime, just have a think as to how far the world has come, technology wise, since you came along. Did you see one of the first TV’s? Do you remember when it was incredibly rare to own more than one car? Do you remember what the connection is between a pen and a cassette tape?