Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Making it Obsolete

Technology has improved exponentially over the last 40 years and more. I have been a part of that and seen it first hand. Not as much as my grandparents who came from horse and buggies to jets and space shuttles but I have seen a lot in my 46 years. I remember driving the tractor out under the blue sky controlling it with nothing more than a throttle, stick shift, steering wheel and two foot brakes. Now I would climb up into an air conditioned cab of some four-wheel-drive monstrosity, sit down in the air-ride arm-chaired seat, look at the LCD display and wonder what in the world to do next. I started out playing my brother’s 8-track tapes, then bought my own LP’s, then on to cassette tapes, on to CD’s and now have an MP3 player.

But sometimes I wonder what improvements we REALLY have made. After a while my CD’s started skipping and scratching just like my old LP’s did. The airplanes we fly are the same ones from 30 years ago. Our cars still use the same gas as 70 years ago. Our speed in getting from one place to another is the same as it was for a long time now. Even though I am typing this on a computer my keyboard is the same QWERTY it has been since the turn of the century. You would think we would be able to type with speaking, listen to music without skipping, fly in something other than metal tubes, fuel with something other than petroleum products and be able to go faster than 70 mph on new radio controlled expressways. But we don’t …

My next vehicle will be ethanol compatible; I would rather support my farmer brother in Indiana than gas companies and other countries. But it will take millions of us to change the norm. Video Cassettes didn’t back off until DVD’s sales took over. The government cannot tell you to buy DVD’s instead of VHS or ethanol instead of gasoline even with incentives if you don’t want to. We have to WANT to change the world and WANT to do things different. CD’s are just about done, you only find VHS and cassettes in garage sales and I REALLY hope fossil fuel is not far behind. Let’s make it obsolete.


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