Hot technology back in the day, now obsolete

April 1, 2011

Technology’s come a very long way in my lifetime. So many things that were part of our lives when we were younger are now obsolete. Think about it:

Chalkboards now replaced by whiteboards. Typewriters? Gone. Camera film–what’s that? 8-track tapes. A dime in your purse for phone call. Jukeboxes.

So…do you know what this is?

There’s no avoiding flow charts and organization charts if you work in business.Today, they’re drawn with a few clicks on a computer. But back in the day, we used templates like these to draw polygons, circles and other shapes by hand. Which was how we fashioned charts.

I know, horse-and-buggy, right?

Today’s technical drawings are done with computer-aided design (CAD) software. But, back in the day draftspersons (ok, they were draftsMEN) worked on drafting tables like these and painstakingly drew technical diagrams by hand. Once this was the height of technology. Now? Totally old school.

Most of us store our contacts on our smartphones and synch them with our computers for backup. But back in the day, this was the height of contact management:
Address books in a metal casing. {I’m not sure this is exactly it, but it’s what they looked like and how they worked. I saw this is the Computer History Museum and think it’s a Fortran crib sheet. Same concept, though}

Here’s how it works: Simply slide the little arrow (on the right) to the appropriate letter of the alphabet and click on the bar below. Presto! The top would open to the right page and you’d find the desired listing in a jiffy!

Just like a scroll bar. Only not.

It’s hard to fathom now, but Iphones? Ipads? Netbooks? Smart phones? Tivo? Kindles? They’ll all go the way of the typewriter.

The way we do things today will one day seem just as old-fashioned as the things depicted in these photos.

Yep. It’s a certainty.

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