For twenty-two years I have seen technology and digital media change at a very fast and significant rate. I am typing out this blog post on a 2010 MacBook Pro, however I still can recall the first computer I used in my household many years ago. It was 1997 and my parents just bought a new Power Macintosh 7220. This computer was big, and bulky and also extremely heavy. At the time all that it afforded me, and all I wanted it to afford me was the ability to play computer games. I can recall waiting the couple minutes it would take to start up before I could launch one of the few games that worked on a Macintosh. Whether I was drag racing in the desert, or racing in the INDY 500, or mining for gold in some cave, this computer gave me a great deal of fun, and pleasure.
Gaming for me would change drastically in 1998, because on Christmas morning I would open a present to the delight of a new Nintendo 64. At the time of its launch, Nintendo 64 truly revolutionized gaming and changed it for the better. With increases in graphics, and more in-depth gameplay, many hours could be spent playing a game before ever being close to beating it. Soon after Christmas 98 my parents would purchase a new Sony TV which was over 50 inches, and at the time the biggest TV that anyone had in my friend group. This TV afforded my friends and I countless hours of fun and pleasure whether it was playing James Bond GoldenEye or Zelda, or Fifa 98. I think that many people my age would say that they had very similar experiences with Nintendo 64, for it was truly the first gaming system that we all had. This image of Zelda represents what the Nintendo 64 did for gaming, although the graphics look horrible compared to new gaming systems, at the time they were extraordinary, plus you the user were able to have an open map with endless possibilities to experience.
After the Nintendo 64, all of my friends had Playstation 2, I decided to go with the first Xbox. It was a bad choice, the system was way to large, it was heavy, and over-heated all the time. The best games did not come out on it, and so I was always stuck playing my friends playstations. However in 2005 Xbox 360 was released and it seemed as if my friends and I all had it. The greatest thing about 360 was the fact that it had online play. This would revolutionize gaming more than ever before. For the first time people could play together or with friends on all their games. I was afforded the opportunity to play NBA, or NHL games with my cousins in Michigan, as we would talk and catch up through the headsets that they provided.
In 2008 my family decided to buy a new Panasonic 65 inch TV, not only was the size of it great, but the color and HD was fantastic for watching sports and also playing video games as well. However in 2011 this TV would ultimately stop working, and burned out. This is a theme that I have seen recur throughout newer technologies. With the advancements we have had in TV, gaming, computers, phones and cars, the supposed “simpler” things have got, I feel has made things almost more complicated and not as reliable. I’ve had three xbox 360s stop working, and numerous of the newer cell phones I have owned the same has happened with (until my Iphone5). My Nintendo 64 however still works to this very day, we will randomly hook it up and get a blast out of playing it. Over the past 15 years of having it, I have not had one problem with it or with any of the games I have owned for it as well. I don’t know if it is just me or the products I had having these problems, but it seems as if it is a recurring theme for many people.
My parents used to work in graphic arts and maps, so my family always had everything Apple and Macintosh. Every new computer was whatever new Macintosh came out, I always hated this as a child because no computer games were ever made for them, they all came out on windows. As Apple started to grow and the iMac came out, and then later the iPod, iPhone, MacBook Pro, and the iPad, I now am happy my parents always chose Apple over windows and other competitors. Much of what people are finally seeing now and experiencing are things that I have been able to use for years, and have had since they first came out. I am now at the point were I don’t use my MacBook for games, but for school, and work it has served me extremely well just like every Apple product I’ve ever had. Just like my Iphone 5 I am on it, or using it for much of the day. It is this dependence that is seen throughout technology, many people become so dependent on a product like an iPhone, or a Xbox 360 that they can’t truly live their lives without it. In my opinion this only leads to failure when dependency is such a main issue. However something like this blog post, would be cool to look back on even only 5 years from now to see what advancements have taken place and the norms that have been established.