View Full Version : Shopping in the future

Terry Yager
December 6th, 2007, 01:05 PM
This clip from the mid-sixties predicts what home computing would look like in 1999:



December 6th, 2007, 01:52 PM
They were amazingly close on the spot with some things, like how transactions are handled electronically. While the concept of e-mail seems to already have existed within some university computers (although not networked), the makers of this clip don't seem to have catched on that people would write to eachother on a typewriter like keyboard. Instead, they picture some kind of digital pen that probably would transmit an image of your handwriting. Maybe it would look more personal if we sent e-mail in that way, but also slower and harder to read and process.

Finally, I find it interesting that they envisioned people owning one or more home computers. I remember as late as the early 1980's when home and personal computers were a reality, the visions for the next decade were that every household would own one or more small robots (think Topo, Fred etc but more developed), but only true enthusiasts would own a full-blown computer. That is a rather drastic change in predictions. On the other hand, if it had not been for Tim Berners-Lee and his (?) World Wide Web invention, I doubt even half as many households today would have owned a computer. Perhaps someone else had come up with a similar Internet application, but I give WWW very much credit for how IT has become a bigger sector than the rest of computer science, and PC sales sky-rocket.

December 6th, 2007, 02:56 PM
Every home does have multiple computers, most are embedded into devices we all own (microwave, cell phone, digital answering machine, etc).

I think when they said robots they might have meant computer controlled devices that make life easier on ourselves, again embedded processors would cover this.