Entering this decade, one can only imagine the great innovations in technology and the amazing inventions that will make the every day items we use right now completely obsolete in ten years. I would like to take some time to pay our respects to 10 things that became utterly useless in this past decade. So read on, and pour a little out for the homies we lost.
10. Fax Machines
Remember these things?¬† Take a look around your office, if you find one of these relics, brush the dust off of it and throw it out. Now.
When was the last time you were lost on the open road, and pulled over to whip one of these bad boys out? In 1492, Christopher Columbus sailed across the Atlantic Ocean with a map and a compass. In 2010, Christopher Szalkowski drives down I-95 with a cell phone to his ear and a GPS on his dashboard. Google Maps has also taken the “fun” out of charting out a trip with a few clicks of a mouse.
When payphones stopped appearing in booths, I wondered where Superman would get dressed.¬† When cell phones came out, I wondered where they threw the thousands of payphones out.¬† Is there a lost island of payphones somewhere?
7. Hand Written Letters
Does anyone even know how much a stamp costs anymore?¬† Do they even still teach cursive in school, or are you taught to type at age 5 now?
6. Landline Phones
We went from 2 tin cans with string, to a rotary phone, to a touch-tone phone. And remember how cool you it was to have a cordless phone? Now a landline is soooo 2004.
I’m sure the last VCR I owned broke with some cheesy Mid 90s teen movie still stuck in it.¬† Now, I’m almost positive my DVD player will be obsolete in the next few years with an equally embarrassing movie inside.
4. Phone Books and 411
Thank you, Google, for never making me flip through the 1000 page headache again.¬† Why open up a phone-book when I can type in a few words and get exactly what I want immediately?¬† And who still calls 411? Why pay to call someone for information, when Google comes to the rescue asap.
3. Newspapers and Classified Ads
I can’t officially say that newspapers are completely obsolete, but with numerous papers closing, thousands of industry layoffs, and the switch to accessing news online, its safe to say that print is dead.¬† By the time a newspaper prints an article, it is old news to anyone with internet access.¬† Why would I pay $2.00 for the New York Times, when nyt.com is not only free, but has more content that could ever be stuffed between the pages of a newspaper.
Craigslist and Ebay has completely cornered the market of classified ads, (a major source of income to newspapers, after advertising revenue, which has been stolen by the digital age as well) and I can’t even remember the last time I looked in the paper for a job, or housing.¬† Come to think of it, I got a bike, my apartment, even this job on Craigslist.
R.I.P. wires.¬† I can’t say I’m sad to see you go, one less thing to trip over.¬† If only literally everything was wireless, I’m still holding out hope for a wireless microwave, so I can bring it in the car with me.
1. Physical Communication
We can’t blame the obsolescence of the phone booth, landline phone, and handwritten letters on why we rarely communicate with people anymore, its the innovations that have replaced them that have curtailed actual communcation with people, by making that communication easier.¬† A text message is easier than a phone call, an email is much easier, and considerable less personal than a handwritten letter. With the help of Facebook, I never have to even call or text or email my friends to see what they are doing, I can just look at their profile pages and get all the info about them that I want to know without ever communcating with them.