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Brought up Apr 27, 2010

Most important tech advances #13: Computers

I realize that it is a bit ironic that I am currently using a computer to write this post and have only ranked computers at number 13. However, if you stop and really think about it for a minute, and when you see the rest of the list, you will probably agree that this is about where they should be. I am not saying that computers have not changed our lives, but they are a relatively new invention, and most of the world still does not have access to one. I am sure this will change within the next couple of decades.

The first computers where the size of buildings and were capable of little more than semi advanced math formulas. In fact, and this is probably common knowledge, the cell phone that is in your pocket is probably far more powerful than the computers used to put a man on the moon. As computers became more useful, they became more present and eventually they became a common sight in most households in the modern world.

While many things added to saturation of the computer, I personally think the biggest is Windows. I can already see people frowning at this, but hear me out. Before windows, if you wanted to use a computer, you had to know quite a bit about them to make them work for you. In fact, I remember when I was first taught how to use a computer it took a weeks worth of class time before we even got to touch one. With the usability of windows, it became a lot simpler to use a computer and you didn't have to memorize long program file names.

Once Windows hit, the computer boom began in earnest. Not only were young people able to more readily use a computer, but so were older people. In fact this program led to many businesses investing in computers as training took relatively little time. Now look at us, everyone has a computer.


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