Why do we always go after the products that are newly released and suddenly see our previous iterations as lesser and inferior? Why is it always “the next best thing” for us? Why do we develop nostalgia for the old things that are sitting there gathering dust as Mr. New gets all the attention?
Because in this world innovation never stops and there always pressure to keep selling and make money. Competition is fierce. Big companies can’t simply rely on their products to keep people’s interest and last forever. Software wears out, new technology is always on the rise. Why would anyone want to buy last years iPhone when the next one always features something better? Unless you’re short of cash, new is better. You want to be part of the in crowd. Trade in your old smartphone, because it sure as hell won’t be worth anything in a couple years.
Is it simply hype or is there a great incentive to always buying new things when they are introduced to the public?
Our many inventions are the reason why we are so far along in history now. Without all of these great innovations through time, we would still be stuck in the stone age, writing on tablets, cooking our food over fires. Without the telephone, we would still be clicking and clacking on a device that you have to learn another language to use. Without Bill Gates, I would surely be writing this blog on a Mac, for better or worse, the thought still in my head that windows are what birds crash into when they are so clean, they look non-existent.
My very first computer at home was a Windows 98 Hotwheels themed PC, targeted for the whole family. I believe it was bought in November or December of 1999 when I was 9 years old. It had a steering wheel and pedal device and an assortment of informative and entertaining games on CD with it. My favorite of those games was Stunt Track Driver but when the software suddenly wouldn’t load anymore, it became Myst, a really weird and mysterious game that I finally completed in 2011 (with cheats). There was also Kid Pix, a widely popular game among kids at the time. The bomb eraser and the undo button guy saying “Oh no!” are memories.
The computer didn’t last very long because of bugs and software issues, but it officially launched my interest into the technological aspects of computers. Now that I think of it, when was the last time I used a screen saver? You know, those images or text that would pop up after a set interval, used to prevent the annoying ghost image effect when the monitor was shut off? I vaguely remember the pipes and weird spinning sentences we would implement, the maze screensaver that I was a little afraid of, the picture of the inside of a computer tower that really peaked my interest and put my mind into imagination as to what made this fantastic machine work.
The machine got old and we had to move on though.
The next computer of ours came in 2001 with Windows XP, which seemed light years ahead of 98. I remember my mom pulling it out of the box and being so excited to see a flat screen monitor (that was innovative back then). Windows XP is where the Internet first became a major player in my life (and nearly everyone else’s). It was still dial-up back then but was fascinating nevertheless, unless someone picked up the phone and cut the connection off. This computer is also where Napster came and went. The screen met its great demise one night when my littlest of two sisters asked how to spell “Because”. When she didn’t get an answer right away, she punched and damaged the sensitive LCD screen, creating a big black spot in the corner with neon squashed pixel lines going down the side. Now I was forced to manuever the windows in order to close or resize them. That little incident always is brought up now and then and my sister and I just laugh like it was the good old days. XP is still kicking it, even after support from the faceless Microsoft gods ended. It was such a great system that still had so much life in it that a next big thing never seemed necessary. But it was and it happened.
In short summary, next came Vista (which I hardly remember except for the games), then Windows 7 (where I was introduced to a great site called YouTube and another thing called blogging), Windows 8 (where I was introduced to effective blogging) , and Windows 10. I’ve been a Windows user my entire life. There has never been the urge to switch to the mighty Mac even if the few times I used it seemed to blow my mind away.
New things keep on getting invented. That’s how human society continues to function and not get bored with itself.
Oh, I forgot one thing.
The best thing I’ve learned in nearly 20 years of computing.
In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “______ is the new ______.”
My blank space sources were from Angloswiss’ blog, one of my favorite blogs to read.