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Saturday, March 6, 2010


While at the age of nearly 41
I am far from being considered elderly,
I am finding that more and more often
I am thinking thoughts that I used to think were the sole domain of the elderly.

Even though I don't call them "whippersnappers" yet,
I often find myself thinking that 'young people' just don't have manners anymore.
My husband made me grin when he said something similar at a casual restaurant tonight.
Apparently I am not the only one with those thoughts!

What really drives it home for me is technological advances.

I mean, folks my age are of the era where "getting cable" was a huge new thing.
TVs with remotes and Atari/Pong were all things that were developed
after I hit two digits.
Cartoons were after school and Saturday mornings.
Let's not even DISCUSS dictionaries and phone books
and actually having to use a card catalog at the library. :-)

Today as I was leaving the market,
I was watching two kids looking at the Redbox to choose a DVD.
They have no idea what it is to be able to go out and choose a movie from a vending machine.
And using a screen to do so, that you can TOUCH!
And then you swipe a card.. when I was growing up, cards were put through a machine manually,
and it would make copies using a carbon, that my mom would then rip up,
making her fingers all dirty.

But something else happened today that was just incredible.
I was blown away.
I had taken the boys to get new shoes an outlet and while we were there,
we stopped in a Lego store.

Get this..
You could take a regular box of Legos,
like this carousel:

and stand in front a video camera.
The camera would show you on a screen holding the box.
(In other words, your picture.)
Then, once it analyzed the box you were holding,
it created an animated 3-D version of the Lego creation
that you would build if you created what you were holding (like the carousel.)

What was really amazing is that you could still see yourself,
standing there, holding the box in front of you,
and the Lego animation would be depicted as being ON the flat part of the box.
So, as you manipulated the box, you could see all sides of the animated Lego creation.

If you wanted to see the top of the carousel,
you would simply tilt the box in your hands toward the camera
and the view would change as you moved it.
Turn the box around and the carousel would turn with it.

And all this time you are watching yourself do it,
except that the thing you are holding is only partly there
and partly created on the screen.

It was the coolest, most bizarre thing I have seen in a long time.

Other people thought it cool too
as they would stop stock still and gape at the screen.
I discovered it quite by accident
but soon most people were eagerly trying it out.

From cordless phones to cell phones to smart phones,
from writing letters, to the internet, email and Facebook.
From Atari and Pong to multiple handheld video games
that can interact with each other virtually
and even play against people in real-time
from all over the world,
this life that we have is so incredible.

Really, think about it.

I cannot even begin, in my wildest imagination,
to conceive of what is yet to come.

I just hope I'm around to see the flying cars.

(PS- Having done some research,
I have discovered this technology is called "Augmented Reality"
and it was developed in Germany.

1 comment:

Ginaagain said...

That is awesome!