I’ll be the first to admit that, in terms of technology, I’m a little behind the times. I mean, I didn’t have a cell phone or a facebook account until 2009, I rarely text, and I’m a little unclear on the distinction between an iPod, an iPad, and an iPhone. I still think it’s pretty awesome that, not only do I have a phone that I can conveniently carry around with me, but that said phone can also be used as a clock, a stopwatch, a camera, and an alarm, and I can even use it as a light source. Never mind that it can’t connect to the internet and doesn’t have the games and apps that everyone else seems to have. I don’t feel that I have much of a use for that kind of technology; the existence of cell phones themselves still seems pretty cool to me. And don’t even get me started on the internet. The internet is like magic. Here I am, sitting alone in my dorm room and typing words that will shortly be visible on computer screens (and other internet-enabled technological devices) all over the world for anyone to see. If I was to log onto facebook right now, I would be able to simultaneously look at stuff posted by people who are in the same building as me and people who are in different countries.

So, despite my relatively old-fashioned use of technology, (if you can call it old-fashioned to use devices that are just a couple years out of date) I’m really not opposed to technological advances. At least, not in theory. I don’t approve of the fact that my computer has updates to install on a daily basis, and I really don’t like the fact that anything related to computers will become obsolete almost immediately after it comes into existence. And I really, really am annoyed by the fact that music and videos are constantly being revolutionized.

I knew that this semi-artsy picture that I took a couple years ago would someday be relevent for something.

I knew that this semi-artsy picture that I took a couple years ago would someday be relevent for something.

When I was little, (we’re talking early 1990s here) my family mainly used cassette tapes to listen to music and VHS tapes to watch videos. We also listened to vinyl records sometimes, although the record player lived in the basement, and we had several tape players in various parts of the house. It was Christmas 1999 when we gave in and started using CDs. After that, I think it was another four or five years before we got a DVD player. Now, there still are vinyl records, cassette tapes, and VHS tapes in our house, and the family still owns the technology to play them, but we have become accustomed to primarily using digital technology. Unfortunately, even though it’s only been a few years, digital technology is on the way out. Now, people listen to music on their various iThings, and DVDs are giving way to Blu-Ray. (To be honest, I don’t even know exactly what Blu-Ray is, even though I’m well aware that it’s actually been around for quite a while)Otherwise, people just use the internet to listen to music and watch videos.

 

This isn't necessarily related to this blog post in any way, but whatever.

This isn’t necessarily related to this blog post in any way, but whatever.

I don’t necessarily think that’s a terrible thing, but it bothers me to know that my fairly impressive CD collection is already nearly obsolete, and DVDs aren’t much better. Meanwhile, it’s hard to even find a cassette player anymore, so cassette tapes are almost worthless, even though they were still in standard use just a couple of decades ago. In the grand scheme of things, a couple decades is no big deal. I’m not very old; I shouldn’t have had to already watch a couple phases of “new” technology turn into obsolete technology. Just imagine all of the new forms of media storage and media playing that will come about throughout the course of my life! The state of my music collection will never be constant. I’ve already experienced the transition from cassette tape to CD and a partial transition from CD to MP3s. And I’m behind the times; practically everyone else in the world is moving beyond MP3s.

This is my request to the people of the world: please don’t let CDs become obsolete! I love my CDs. I think that MP3 players are a pretty neat idea, too, but I still prefer CDs. Once CDs finish going out of style and iDevices completely take over as the universal norm, something else will come along and iThingies will become obsolete, too. Then everyone will either have to lose significant portions of their music collection or spend lots of money to replace it all. The only way we can end this ongoing pattern of technological replacement is to decide that we like our technology the way it is, and we’re going to keep using it, even if electronics manufacturers tell us that we aren’t supposed to like the old way. (Again, I think it’s ironic that something like CDs can be called “old” when they were cutting-edge just a generation ago.)

Let’s keep technological advances in fields such as medical science, engineering, and physics, where they can do good and useful things that will benefit the human race as a whole. The entertainment industry is more developed and less important than any other field of scientific endeavors. If advances in entertainment technology slow down or even stop, it isn’t going to hurt anyone. I suggest that we all continue to use and enjoy the music-storage and music-playing devices that we have now and do our part to help them stick around for a while longer.

Long live the Compact Disc!

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