Home - is where I want to be / But I guess I'm already there /I come home -
she lifted up her wings /
Guess that this must be the place...
- Talking Heads, "Naive Melody"

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

The future's so bright....

Ten years ago, I was in grad school. The university had email, of course. It was text-based. I had a Web site, every tag constructed by hand. No one had heard of XML. The word "blog" had not been invented. Some people, myself included, were grousing regularly about the intrusion of commercial enterprise onto the purity of the Web.

I was interrupted in writing this post by the need to go out and buy the song referenced in the title.

The laptop on which I am working now would have blown away just about any commercially available desktop system back then. There's a Google toolbar ensconced on my screen, giving access to an ever-evolving selection of tools and amusements, and even those that existed back then would have required prohibitive network bandwidth to use in such a manner.

About the only thing I've used consistently across that span has been Word, which says something about it, I think.

The challenge of course is in using all of this productively, rather than spending half the day noodling around with one's blog settings, for instance. Ferret shock is a real threat with neat new products and features being unveiled all the time; it takes a while to figure out for each of them whether they're worth the bother.

I don't really have a point here, I'm just often amazed by how quickly things move. I'm not sure how developers do it, how much time they have to invest in staying on top of what's possible when someone's inventing a new tool, and things for that tool to do, every day.

1 comment:

FleshyHeadedMutant said...

I've recently read articles about technology invisibility cloth, fabric that uses the sound waves generated by the wearer's heartbeat to generate electricity, navy rail guns, and helmets that read the wearers thoughts to run computer programs, all currently in various stages of development.

Just 10-15 years ago, these were all strictly the province of comic books. It makes me dizzy thinking about it.