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10 inventions that changed your life back in the 80's

Updated on January 3, 2011


engine, heart and hub of the digital age. It begun it's evolution in late 70's, with those "smaller" units, reducing it's size in comparison with it's predecessor of the past decade. Scelbi, Mark-8 altair, IBM 5100, Apple I and II, TRS-80 and the Comodore pet, where the first models coming as personal computers. At the very beginning there where a lot of problems with compatibility, like unholy keyboards, mouses!? they where not invented yet... monitors didn't met colors yet and a lot of disadvantages that made this computers, like a giant expensive calculator. So IBM low prices, so this gadgets became more popular with people, The IBM PC presented in august of 1981, gave a green light to the insane IT race that continues until our days. Then Microsoft comes to scene and makes a crucial play called: MS-DOS (I'm still using it to program drivers and stuff :D) and lately Windows OS  which became the must overwhelming dominance in the market, but more important it allowed the people the ability to have a personal computer, gadget without which we could not survive today.


The first big gadget which showed up in the multimedia industry, this gadgets resulted very heavy intrusive and burdensome with all that forward and rewind, however it represents the first stone in the digital media exchange tower, and of course the development of the leisure economy, in 1950 you already had the ability to record everything showing on T.V and also movies you rented in your favorite video club. There was a format war featured by JVC and it's VHS and Sony and its betamax, is still quoted today to represent one of the biggest corporative wars, model of all kind of hostile actions between great corporations. Anyway sony lost this one and the VHS became the market standard, and the video tapes became a common good which could not least in any home. Then DVD's came and finally Blue-Ray in our days, which was in fact a sony revenge but this time against the HD-DVD from toshiba. however the video became part of the domestic tech history and today it is hard to find someone who doesn't own a video player gadget.


A known proverb dictates: "a child is only different of a man by the price of his toys" (lately not even that, seriously guys toys are getting expensive :s) . It was 1975 when Magnavox and Atari presented the world famous pong, which consisted in a black screen with two lines and a dot bouncing across the screen emulating some sort of tennis or ping-pon. Scince then the video games industries have continue to grow until one of the most resistant industries against the recession, becoming almost a first need gadget, this is because some people consider games as important as food. This days games quality and variety is overwhelming. every time closer to real-life graphics, creating realistic environments which catches us like our life depends on that.


It was the first communication way with the internet world. this could not be absent in the must influential gadgets from the digital era. Trough it's "strange noises" we connected to internet at speeds that back then seems to be stratospheric. Developed in 1981 by Hayes Communications, the modem provided bidirectional communications between people and developed the internet use massification in the society.  Once the green light was given, other communication devices came out to birth but in essence the basics remains the same.


Never a simple thing caused so much revolution!. Developed in the 60's it was not but two years later when it rockets sky high, becoming an essential gadget for the use of a personal computer. it was called mouse because it remains us the sympathetic rodent. it made the use of the computer an easy task, and people fell in love quickly with it, leaving behind the use of key combinations and contextual menus. the mouse improved the digital experience and became the angular stone of computer inputs along with the keyboard. In our days it's still alive and kicking with so cool improvements (like laser-wireless mouses :D)  and it is not leaving yet, even when we already have touch and multi touch! 


Seems like we have skipped some steps, but not. it is clear that printers where a gadget that helped the communication and information technologies a lot , in our homes we have the ability to have any script, book (or ebook) as we are talking about a impressum. but it have been laser printers which have boosted this technology sky high as it have came to make office prints more profitable, its performance is lavish and its prints have excellent quality, all at a very low cost and profitable for any business. Laser technologies became so great, because you have to do almost any maintenance and you don't have to worry about injectors.


It's development was almost parallel with the desktop computers, yet in its very beginnings was very expensive heavy and non profitable for the public. in the 70's the appeared definitely but its battery was heavy as lead coffin and it would not least to much time. at the beginning it was no challenge for a desktop computer, but in the 90's laptop computers shrink its size while increments its power, prices continued to separate both worlds, but this days you can afford a laptop computer with almost no effort, and you can tell that because must people have a desktop computer as well as a laptop computer.


The very first digital camera was developed by the Kodak enterprise, which delegated the prototype to the engineer: Steven J. Sasson in 1975 this camera used back then the new CCD sensors developed by Fairchild Semiconductor in 1973. His work gave as a result a digital camera which weigh almost 4kg, black and white photos and a stunning 0,001 mega pixels resolution. ever since the digital revolution have killed analog cameras and domed then to the oblivion. It seems that such a great art as revealing your photos encountered itself in such an edge and all because of this digital gadget, but chemistry leaves the race to the bits.


This one has revolutionized the market to the absolute limits. In just 25 years has evolved to become one of the must brutal high-tech gadgets and small size there are today. The Motorola DynaTAC was the first mobile phone in 1983 and weighed the tremendous figure of 780 grams, almost a kilo phone, looking beyond brick and a briefcase containing the battery to talk for not very long. At its inception, the mobile phone was so expensive that only could afford the rich CEOs and ostentatious. People were amazed when they see a guy wearing ties, with hair slicked back, standing in the middle of the sidewalk and talking on the device that huge but amazing. Soon began the frantic raceto possess the smallest mobile and more advanced, until our days, that there are more telephones than people in the country. Many have tried to resist the charms of this device but progress does not stop to anyone and most have yielded to this small sample of wireless technology. It can sometimes be extremely annoying, but we can not live without our cell.


It has become the point where all the digital technology of the moment. IBM released the first in 1993 and was called Simon, but probably did not think the implications of his invention. In a device the size of a pack of cigarettes you find a mobile phone,digital camera, video, GPS, computer and Internet access with some quality graphics and amazing connection speed. Represents each and every one of the greatest exponents of the digital age. All in a small device, manageable and easy to use. The smartphone (smart phone) gets nervous the electronics industry. There may come a day I stop buying digital cameras, laptops and other similar items since our Smartphone will take all incorporated and with a similar quality. Are still somewhat expensive and burdensome access arrangements yet, but with the speed with which advances the digital world would not be surprising that soon have a smartphone the same way we now have a mobile phone.

Surely there will be other electronic devices that can sneak into the list, what we lack include, according to you? Do robots? Is GPS? The LCD? Does the digital toilet paper? (Who knows, maybe it comes a day robots are too much like humans)


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    • profile image


      6 years ago

      looks like a dead mummy

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      so not cool

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      so cool

    • profile image


      8 years ago

      Why is this titled 80's inventions when only one was actually invented then?

    • profile image


      9 years ago


    • Mike's Corner profile image

      Mike's Corner 

      9 years ago from Maryland

      Wow, my past is a museum . . .scary! Great hub, thanks for putting it together.

    • RicardoE profile imageAUTHOR

      Ricardo Enrique 

      9 years ago from Guatemala City

      Thanks Tony, I enjoyed doing this hub :)

      My favorite was the digital camera, I mean look at the size!!! nothing compared to our Lumix compact cameras.

    • tony0724 profile image


      9 years ago from san diego calif

      Boy the 80s was my heyday and now that I look at all of those devices they look so ancient ! My laptop looks like a thin sliced sandwich compared to the one in the photo. Good job on this hub.


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