Of all the technologies that have gone extinct in your lifetime, which one do you miss the most?
I thought this would be easy when I first saw the prompt. After all, at my great age I have seen things go, wandered in and out of many technological cul-de-sacs.
But really? I was going to say steam trains. But there’s more of them around now than in 1970. Many great machines have been lovingly restored. Trains themselves are still around. I might marvel at a streamlined wonder from the thirties…. then hop onto a TGV or the Thalys. Even my little local TER looks like something out of a fifties space comic.
So, what else has gone extinct? Analog photography definitely. I have several beautiful cameras that seem virtually new. My first Canon SLR for instance. It took the most amazing photos (I was more easily pleased in those days). I didnt mind the wait to get my pictures back from the chemist. That seemed part of the fun. Usually I’d forgotten what was on the reel of film by the time it was developed.
By comparison, my first digital camera, a Hewlett Packard,was clunky and slow. It did, however, have a 4 meg memory. Wow, that was thirty photos! Better still, I could go home, connect a wire and see my photos on screen.
Now, I keep my little Canon Ixus in my back pocket wherever I go. Every day is a photo safari. I can see what I’ve taken on the screen at the back. Bracketing? No worries, I can blaze away, trying many angles and settings.
There are great photographers still using silver nitrate film, but many others embrace the digital world. Photography has not gone extinct. It flourishes! From phone cameras to high end, low number Canon EOS machines, great pictures are still being made.
So I dont miss my analog cameras, much as I loved them, the new breed has set me free.
It strikes me that most of the technology I like has not really become extinct, it just continues to evolve. So, I miss nothing, I cant wait to see just what they’ll think of next!