Long ago predictions;
Many years back when I was just in the third grade a man from the Ohio Bell[i] company came to our school. He talked about the telephone and then showed us a movie of what we would see in the future. Now their prediction of the future of technology was more like Ma and Pa Parker[ii] but the year 2000 came and went, there, where no streets of smart houses and all the great robots where still just in the movies. Now being so young I believed that yes one day we would live like the Jetsons and I think most kids at that time believed this their future where their parent believed that it was more fantasy than real. This could explain the disconnect some older people have with technology today. The reality is the tech is here or let say almost here since there has not been a building, car or city. That puts all this tech together in one sustainable cohesive format to move us into the space age of the Jetsons. [iii]Which raises the questions why not and what happen to slow or stop this move forward? Now there can be a lot of discussion on this subject, but I am wanting to document just a few of my thoughts. One the brake up of Ma Bell it was good and bad in fact many of the big cases like this had good and bad outcomes. The problem really seems to be how the breakups reformed and what direction and miss step they took. But overall the technology in my life time seems to be moving faster in the later years or I am just getting old.
Casio[iv], Sony[v] and Minolta[vi]?
Now these where great brands I had a Casio watch called a data bank it was one of the first digital watches and it had everything, world time 7 different cities, stop watches, stored phone numbers close to a 100 I think never filled it up, but it was a life line, and being in the Navy it was the perfect watch. Back then I thought that Sony had the lock on television tech, when they acquired Erickson company known for their sounds, out of this came a cell phone. What a phone big and clunky but full of features I would say it was the Casio watch in the phone plus a voice recorder, mp3 player and you could even buy a printer for it. Early smart phone maybe. Later Sony acquired a camera company Konica/Minolta, I have always liked Minolta cameras that was my brand of choice before I switched to Nikon. And when the digital came in the Konica/Minolta was my first digital camera before I brought my first DSLR, a Nikon. Now Sony and Casio are in the camera market and Sony is even making headway into the Pro camera Market. So, Casio and Sony, where is my Dick Tracy style comm. watch? Hey, we have smart phones, smart watches, devices to talk to. that runs our lights, tv and computer. We can control our home security from remote locations. I’m just saying.
Maybe a Divorce Would have been better.
While the breakup of companies like AT&T[vii] (ma bell) into many companies that compete was good for competition a case can be made that it slowed development of technology. The splitting of companies also meant that the intellectual assets are divided and development of new and like products take a life of their own. In one tech, out another even before we can get uses to it. Example; VHS, laser disc, CDs mp3 and now jump drive all ways of storing data. If like any bad breakup the kids (intellectual assets) suffers. Split in development and research with companies dropping one line of development for another, only to go back to it. Maybe if there were visitation rights added to the breakups where the assets could be shared. I would have my Dick Tracy multi-function communication wrist watch by now. Truth is I could care less about a smart house, just give me the watch.
[i] Ohio Bell
The Ohio Bell Telephone Company, now doing business as AT&T Ohio, is the Bell Operating Company serving most of Ohio and parts of West Virginia. It is a wholly owned subsidiary of AT&T. Its headquarters is the Ohio Bell Building at 750 Huron Road, Cleveland, Ohio, and formerly had a secondary headquarters at 150 East Gay Street, Columbus, Ohio. Ohio Bell is not affiliated with Cincinnati Bell, which serves Cincinnati and other surrounding communities.
[ii] Ma and Pa Kettle are comic film characters of the successful film series of the same name, produced by Universal Studios, in the late 1940s and 1950s. They are a hillbilly couple with sixteen children whose lives turn upside-down when they win a model-home-of-the-future in a slogan-writing contest. At the verge of getting their farm condemned, the Kettles move into the prize home that is different from their country lifestyle. After that, they are subjected to more unusual situations.
[iii] The Jetsons is an American animated sitcom produced by Hanna-Barbera, originally airing in primetime from September 23, 1962, to March 17, 1963, then later in syndication, with new episodes in 1985 to 1987
[iv] Casio Computer Co., Ltd. is a Japanese multinational consumer electronics and commercial electronics manufacturing company headquartered in Shibuya, Tokyo, Japan.
[v] Sony Corporation is a Japanese multinational conglomerate corporation headquartered in Kōnan, Minato, Tokyo. Its diversified business includes consumer and professional
Minolta Co., Ltd. was a Japanese manufacturer of cameras, camera accessories, photocopiers, fax machines, and laser printers. Minolta was founded in Osaka, Japan, in 1928 as Nichi-Doku Shashinki Shōten. It is perhaps best known for making the first integrated autofocus 35mm SLR camera system. In 1931, the company adopted its current name, an acronym for “Mechanism, Instruments, Optics, and Lenses by Tashima”. In 1933, the brand name first appeared on a camera, a copy of the Plaubel Makina simply called “Minolta”.
[vii] AT&T Inc. is an American multinational conglomerate holding company headquartered at Whitacre Tower in Downtown Dallas, Texas. It is the world’s largest telecommunications