a little more than ten years ago, i had my first cell phone, when digital phones finally came out & prices allowed ordinary folk like myself to possess these mythical devices that previously only rich doctors and coke dealers carried. the coolest thing i did with it was to put my home phone on call forwarding and take calls at the beach. man, that was teh awesomeness.
a little more than ten years ago, i’d heard of the internet, but it wasn’t until 1999 that i got my actual hands on an internet-connected 486 with a screamin’ 33.6 modem & right after that i rented my very own shiny 486 from Rent-A-Center because this internet thing was the best thing i’d ever had my actual hands on, & within 6 months i had a job with the title of webmaster but that’s another story entirely, actually.
anyway. if, back then, some future dude had come up to me & said, “hey i’m a future dude, & i’ve totally been sent here to tell you that ten years from now, you’ll be sitting in a funky beachside cantina eating a juicy ahi burger with one hand and playing on a thing called plurk on teh mobile internets on your qwerty-keyboarded telephone with the other, while you uploaded a very decent sized photograph you took with said telephone to a place called brightkite while you were listening to your music collection from a memory card the size of your pinky fingernail that held two … get this … two gigabytes yes giga, not mega, bytes of said music on a pair of stereo headphones that weren’t even plugged into anything but the little controller thingy that you used to you know, control things like that” … well i’d have thrown my fancy-ass CD walkman at future-dude’s head and told him he was batshit insane, even though the term batshit hadn’t even been invented yet. and then i’d probably have slapped him. in the face. with an ahi, had i had one handy.
anyway. on the way home from the funky beachside cantina, walking up the stairs to my tiny beachy apartment, a particularly amazing song came on the bluetooth headphones. i set my beer down on the stairs, unclipped the receiver and attached it to my son (who was newly born when all that future dude stuff would have happened, if it had), and slipped the headphones in his ears.
10 years of genius-hours invested in tech R&D: $gazillions
BlackBerry Curve with Bluetooth headset & huge/tiny microSD card: $200-ish
watching an 11 year old boy experience ‘Several Species of Small Furry Animals Gathered Together in a Cave and Grooving with a Pict’ for the first time: priceless