Questions My Grand Children Might Ask Me
Things That Didn't Exist Yet When My Grandmother Was Born.
I was just thinking about my grandmother and all things that weren't in existence yet when she was born. It's just mind boggling, and it makes me wonder about the things that I grew up with that my grandchildren might never only see except in movies, tv, and magazines. When my grandmother was born in 1902, there was no television, there were no airplanes, cars were few and far between, and most of the roads in my hometown were still made of dirt. The electric light bulb was young, there were no microwave ovens, and an ice box was more common than a refrigerator. There were no computers or Internet or shopping malls, or even electronic cash registers. I remember the telephone in my grandmother's house when I was a small boy didn't even have a dial on it, and when you picked up the receiver, you were connected to an operator at the telephone company.
There were no mobile phones, no electric typewriters, no VCRs, DVDs, CDs, or ATMs. There was no direct deposit, and people got paid either by check or cash and they had to physically go to the bank every payday to get their checks cashed and/or deposit money into their accounts. There were no electric guitars and amplifiers or rock and roll bands. The most common record was a 78 RPM which had pretty poor sound quality. There weren't any transistor radios yet, because radios had tubes and they were big and bulky. My grandmother had a combination phonograph and radio that was as big as an ordinary chest of drawers and probably twice as heavy.
Now, I wonder about all things that I am used to, that I grew up having around me all the time, will my grandchildren know what those things are? Will they just be heresay?
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Grandpa is it True That............??
I can imagine that one day my grandchildren might ask me, "Grandpa, is it true that one time there were light bulbs besides LED or CFL?" or "Grandpa, is it true that people used to watch movies on something called a television?" or "Grandpa, is it true that there was a time when people had to talk to each other on a phone that had stay inside the house, and that had all kinds of wires connected to it?" So many things, that I was accustomed to as a child are slowly fading away. The typewriter is nearly totally gone and forgotten among younger people. I remember the big, bulky, black Underwood manual typewriter that my mother use to type on nearly daily in her life-long endeavor to become a writer. (An endeavor that unfortunately, she only found a very minimal amount of success at.)
Just like the typewriter, I predict that the days of the television as we know it and the land-line telephone are numbered and will soon become relics that are only found in museums. I have an old Motorola vintage '60's tube driven console TV in my living room. Back then there was only VHF, basically channels 2 through 12. A little later UHF came along, and were introduced to some new channels from 13 through maybe into the 50 or 60 somethings. Of course, where we lived we could only get channels 3, 6, 10, 17, 29, & 48 because all we had was an antenna on the roof of the house. There was no cable, Internet, or WiFi back in those days. Maybe my grandchildren will ask me one day, what that wooden box is that sits in my living room, because I doubt that they will even know what a TV screen is.
By the time my grandchildren are born and have grown old enough to be watching movies, I don't think there will be TV screens anymore. Instead there will be virtual hologram 3D air screens. There may even be a time when people can be active participants in the movies they are watching. Kind of scary actually. The music industry will have drastically changed by then too. People will be able to design their own bands by then. Something akin to a digital oscilliscope may allow us to make virtual copies of our favorite artists and the instruments that they play. We can plug our digital signals into our holographic 3D air screens and we can build a band comprised of musicians of our own choosing. Then we can take any song that is digitized (whether it is of our own composition or someone's recorded hit) and plug that digitized signal into whatever piece of virtual software at takes to run the whole thing. It will be so realistic that no one will be able to discern the virtual band members from their real-life counterparts. Of course along the way, I'm sure there will be myriads of copyright infringement lawsuits, but ultimately it will probably be decided that all the elements needed to create this type of musical experience are public domain (that is of course if we still even have such laws to protect artists.)
With the advent of the mobile phone, WiFi, iPads, iPods, and on-the-go Internet access, nobody will any longer have any need for a land-line telephone, and computers will be so small and portable that the LapTop, NoteBook, and NetBook computers will be going into the history books too!!!
Speaking of "Books" will they ask me "Grandpa, is it true that once upon a time people bought stories in things called books that were written on something called paper?" Perhaps bookstores and libraries will be gone by then, and replaced totally by digital media readers where any book in the world that was ever written will be available at one's fingertips in milliseconds.
"Grandpa, Can We Go To Mars for the Weekend?"
Sounds far fetched, but that day is going to come sometime. Eventually, mankind will have ruined the Earth beyond repair and it will become a matter of human survival to colonize space. This of course, will require people traveling back and forth over some period of time after we have conquered the limits that are imposed by the current maximum attainable speeds in deep space. It's going to take a lot more technology before we get there, but I think the day will come when I trip to Mars will take hours instead of years. There will be the development of some new types of fuels that can give the kind of acceleration boost that will be required to get there in such a short time. It will also require a considerable amount of time to make the planet habitable. Hopefully, explorers will find some source of liquid water on Mars as that will be our number one need to make the place fit for us to live on. Lots of things to ponder on, but I predict the day will come when it will be a common trip. Hopefully, we can do it before we have totally destroyed the Earth.
Or, maybe we will have developed deep space travel at such speeds that we can travel to and explore other galaxies that are light-years away in only a matter of a few short days. It seems to me that somewhere in our immense universe there must be someplace other than this place where we could live comfortably. These are reasons why we always need scientists, engineers, designers, and people that believe that there are no boundries on what human beings can accomplish.
I hope that I'm wrong, and I hope that mankind doesn't destroy the Earth, but there certainly isn't enough being done to slow down or stop the processes that are taking are planet further away from human habitability.