It's time to ride the rocket of the new millennium folks; after all, 2001 is here.
And though most of us weren't around to welcome the 1900s, I think we can safely say that a lot has changed since then. Granted, we aren't riding around in hovering automobiles and taking moon-cruises (yet), but a retrospective into the last 100 years should be enough to remind us of how much our inventive minds can change the human lifestyle over a relatively short period of time.
After attending the Bluetooth Developer's Conference in San Jose last December, my mind started jogging down the timeline of technology. I thought about the things that I remember seeing for the first time and that I take for granted now. Like when my family first got a VCR (the first movie we rented was Footloose), it changed our lives (the VCR I mean). Or take the cordless telephone (that took teenage life to a whole new level).
Speaking of a whole new level, those things are ancient history thanks to the emergence of cell phones and DVD players. But that's just the thing about technology — ancient history is so relative that it is really only a matter of patient history. Something new and improved will come along eventually; you just have to wait for it. Just look at the red carpet the last 100 years has unrolled before us:
Just 100 years ago Guglielmo Marconi received the first transatlantic radio signals using syntonised (tuned) receivers and transmitters. In 1906, Lee DeForest developed the vacuum tube triode and the first amplifier was constructed. Three years later, the first successful radio broadcast was made in, appropriately, San Jose, CA.
Jumping ahead to the roaring 20s, Philips introduced its first radio set, Western Union sent the first electronically transmitted photograph, and the first electronic TV picture was transmitted.
The first digital computer could add and subtract using binary code. It came along in 1939. Today's computer makes that look like the abacus. OK, maybe I'm easily impressed, but this all blows me away. What's more is that it never stops.
I'm sure that many of you are frustrated with the recent slows in the semiconductor industry and other sectors, but think of how many ups and downs the industry has seen since its infancy. Without the downs, the ups don't mean a thing. Let's just keep hoping that the slow-down is just a blister on the toe of the industry. You see it coming, and it hurts like crazy to put your shoes on after it pops, but once it does, it heals so fast you hardly remember it was ever there.