Friday, September 28, 2012

Welcome to the future!

One thing you come to understand over time is, you're basically turning into your parents. I used to get “letters” from my mother that were just envelopes full of newspaper clippings. Whenever she saw a story that she thought someone would be interested in, Mom would clip it from the paper and put it aside. When she had several stories, she would shove them into an envelope, add a stamp and an address, and off it would go to inform its intended audience of whatever my mom thought was so interesting.

I do the same thing, but faster. If I see a blog post or online article I think my husband, kids, or even friends would be interested in, I send an email with just the link and the article title (Shareholic makes it really easy).  Instead of envelopes full of newspaper, they get emails full of links. At least my efforts are tidier.

Disk storage is something else that has changed radically in form and appearance. I remember our first 40 BM hard drive; it weighed as much as a dictionary, and it was about the same size. The other day we upgraded my daughter's phone, and the Verizon guy took the SIM card out of her “old” phone to move it to the new one. I had not seen a SIM card in a while; I recall thinking they were quite small back when I got my first cell phone—maybe half as big as a credit card—but now they are teensy. I swear this thing was the size of a fake fingernail—a pinky finger fake fingernail—only much thinner. One good sneeze and you could lose it forever. And yet the damn thing held dozens and dozens of photos and a few videos, too.

Some science fiction tries to predict the future, but it's difficult to know which direction things will go and how fast. We're not at all likely to have colonies on the moon any time soon, let alone on other planets, but in the developed world, most people carry their own personal communicators that also do countless other things. And while flying cars seem (thankfully) a long ways off, driverless cars are much more imminent.

And of course, there are always ebooks and ereaders. I can't wait for my new Kindle to get here! Rest assured that I'll post a review of it once it does.

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