The technological advances from our beginning to today have been exponential. The beginnings of our technology have brought ideas and new innovations to make our society greater than it ever has been. Through out the decades of our existence, we have created technology that seems to have been straight out of a futuristic novel. From the invention of wheel to the the invention of the Hydrogen bomb, we have developed ways to not only destroy but create. Our ability to bring our ideas in our imagination to life is incredible, since technology in my opinion paves way to a universal culture. Technology innovates the way we as a people function and sometimes communicate with one another. The technology from 1970 to today are inventions which really impacted the way we see the future.
In the 1970’s America is falling into a recession and experienced change, but for technology it was considered a golden era. During the 1970’s, an arise of video games came about. The invention of video games and arcades caused children and teenagers to start developing a cultural change in America; associating teenage boys and video games to obsessions of wanting to live the virtual life they do in the game. For instance, when I was a young child growing up in the 1990’s, I would be addicted to my Gameboy because I would want to play Pokemon for 10 hours straight. So video games were very innovative in all children and teens lives. In today’s terms, video games have gotten to the point where it is a must have even if it is an application game. The beginnings of the video game era started with simplistic game such as: Pong, Tetras, and Space Invaders all created the new upcoming business we know today. While Pong may not have been the first video game, it was certainly the first commercially successful one and ushered the video game industry into existence. (venturebeat.com) Teenagers were the main target for these new technology advances, and they bought (literally) into it. The need to become the kid who held the number one spot on space invaders or pacman was prominent in almost every neighborhood. The arise of video games gave children and teens a chance to “live” a completely different life, it gives them a way to “get lost” in a different planet or place.
During the beginning and mid 1970’s, space exploration was expanded by the American government. Since the Cold War was still occurring, When this was taking place, the Space Race with Soviet Russian and United States was happening and the US sent man to the moon in 1969 which was also broad casted to all television networks. During this time period, space stations were established and America called theirs “Skylab.” (buzzle.com) As well as the Skylab being established, Saturn rockets were launched three times. So with the successful launching of rockets means, we are able to successfully launch a rocket and send it to space. I believe it is such a feat to be able to send man to a whole different planet and hopefully different solar system. Throughout this time period a lot of engineers were used to create this ability and with the ideas of sending man not only into another planet, some scientists predict we will be able to send man to different dimensions possibly. Space exploration was a technological advancement that greatly changed the way we live. For instance, if we didn’t have the ability to launch rockets into space, we couldn’t launch satellites and then we wouldn’t be able to have things like: GPS, internet, and weather predicting.
In the 1980’s, technological advances reached a whole new level. During this time period, new machinery came about and re-innovated the inventions from the previous decade. According to David Henkin and Rebecca McLennan’s Becoming America, the single manufacturing industry that experienced steady growth in the 1980s was a relatively new one. This new industry was the creation of personal computers. Inventions like the Apple Macintosh was completely new and innovative, since computers at the time were the size of a room and now they have been shrunk to where it fits on a desk. This new industry would forever change the way people use technology, since today almost everyone has a computer/laptop, smart phone, or some sort of device which can be used as a computer can. Meanwhile people like Bill Gates and Paul Allen made the first operating system. (Henkin, McLennan pg. 863) Throughout the 1980’s, the most inspirational advancements were mainly computers and new video games, since these two had the most impact on our society than anything else from the time period.
Throughout the 1990’s, this decade is known as the Information Age. (pg. 893) During the 1990’s, the amount of pollution created by the cars in the major cities caused the Clean Air Act to be passed; which forced car companies to make more fuel efficient cars. These cars are known as “hybrid” cars which are a a mix of gas and electrical powered cars. Only this past decade, electrical cars have been popularized by companies like: Nissan, Toyota, and General Motors. (brighthub.com) One invention that revolutionized the world was the webcam, which was created in 1991. This little invention was one that made it possible for people on different ends of the country or world to be able to see each other “face to face.” Today many people rely on a web camera whether it be on their phone, lap top, ipod, table, etc. Try to imagine today’s world without being able to send “selfies” that would be a horrible disaster for all teens today.
In the 2000’s to today, our society has developed great feats not only in engineering and technology, but feats which have affected our lives to the point where we take them for granted. Web sites like: Google, Amazon, and eBay survived a “dot-com crash” in March 2000. (pg. 895) These major sites are sites none of the people from my generation take for granted because now when we want to know something, we google it on our phones and not have to go to a library or know my memory when an event happened and occurred. Other advances in this time period were flash drives, these little boxes of memory hold what is known as Gigabytes in such a small space. This allowed us to evolve from floppy disks to flash drives and we were able to put documents and other important items into one and not worry about it being gone forever unless you lose the flash drive. Other impressive advances are, the creations of the Playstation 3 and Xbox 360, WiFi hotspots, smartphones, and hybrid cars. These new advances in technology are only a few and many more are to come since we are an ever evolving species. Change is inevitable, and we should embrace it to continue creating new technology for the sake of mankind.