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Entries in retro tech tuesday (45)


Retro Tech Tuesday: Univac Computer Ad from the 50's

While we've only been buying computers for home use for about 35 years, that doesn't mean there weren't computer ads long before. Today we bring you a TV commercial from the 1950's in which, Remington Rand promotes the abilities of their UNIVAC computer, especially for predicting the weather. Talk about trying to build brand awareness: at the time there were perhaps 300 businesses that could even afford a UNIVAC, but that didn't stop Remington Rand from buying TV time.

Take a look:


Retro Tech Tuesday: Touchscreen Computers are Old News

Think those shiny iPads, and iPhones we've been carrying were the first attempt at mass touchscreen technology? Think again. Today we go all the way back to 1984 and HP, err, Hewlett Packard's attempt at a business computer that used a touchscreen technology.

The story of how Xerox left the mouse interface slip through their hands only to be capitalized on by Apple has been told many times. Maybe its time to start considering how the computer landscape would be different today had HP stuck with, and further developed this technology:

Here's a more in-depth look from our friends at the Computer Chronicles:


Retro Tech Tuesday: Original iPod follow-up: The First Promo Video

Last week we took a look at the first iPod commercial, in all its dated glory. This week, we look at another aspect of the iPod launch that hasn't changed as much: the accompanying product launch. Here's how Phil Schiller and friends described the iPod:


Retro Tech Tuesday: Original iPod Ad

It's amazing how quickly things can get dated. I can remember when I first saw this commercial, I thought it was a cool way to get people to understand the concept of the iPod. In retrospect, I have to agree with one YouTube commenter who said it looks like the iPod makes you dance like an idiot.

Here's a look at how far the iPod, and Apple's ad campaigns have come:


Retro Tech Tuesday: 1989 Macintosh Portable

I have no doubt that in twenty-odd years, we (and our kids) will look back and giggle at what we considered cutting edge technology. Still, that's no reason to keep us from looking back now, and laughing at the state of the art 20 years ago.

In 1989, Apple was ready to unveil the Macintosh Portable, with a blazingly fast 16MHZ processor. That's megahertz, folks... Still, looking back there were some cutting edge features like stereo speakers, save sleep state, and according to Apple''s numbers, 10-12 hours of battery life.

Given the increases in processor efficiency, you could probably operate a modern laptop for a month if we were all willing to lug around something the size of the Macintosh Portable. In this clip, we get prescient prediction that portables could lead to an explosion of the use of animated presentations in the business sector. Kudos to Microsoft for also sensing the growing market, and purchasing a then Mac-only piece of software called Presenter, which would later become what we know today as PowerPoint:

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