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10 Technologies MIA

Zonk posted more than 9 years ago | from the way-of-the-dodo dept.

Technology 698

Fantasy Football writes "CNet lists ten technologies they miss, which includes Napster, the originial Palm Pilot, good keyboards, and more. From the article: 'Technology evolves. Good technologies and products usually survive; poor ones usually go extinct. But not all of the technologies and tech products that have swirled down the drain of the tech gene pool deserved their fate. Here are some big, and some small, ideas that we thought we'd have with us forever, but that unfortunately have gone the way of the dodo.'"

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Please bow your heads in prayer... (1)

The_Fire_Horse (552422) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267326)

... for those brave souls on the shuttle , about to reenter the earth.
Let's hope the duct tape holds, but if not then here are a couple of suggestions for trolling:
'LOL JEWS DID SPACE!'
'Typical US shit - this is what happens when the republicans are in charge'
'Typical US shit - this is what happens when the democrats cut funding'
'Did the shuttle run linux?'
'Terrorists have taken out the shuttle!'
'It was a CIA job to get more funding'
'It was an NSA job to get more CIA agents'
'Aliens took out the shuttle'

Seriously, I hope it goes well - I have more fun trolling religeons than science.

Re:Please bow your heads in prayer... (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267542)

Thinking about shuttle disasters always reminds me of the old jokes:

What does NASA stand for? Need another seven astronauts.

What color were Christa McAuliffe's eyes? Blue - one blew this way and the other blew that way!

For those who don't want to RTFA, the top 10: (0)

Fantasy Football (886971) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267330)

For those who don't want to RTFA, the top 10:

1. Manned space exploration
2. Kozmo.com
3. Napster
4. The Concorde
5. GM's EV1
6. The original Palm Pilot
7. Good keyboards
8. Wires
9. LPs
10. The Newton

Re:For those who don't want to RTFA, the top 10: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267347)

What? No Betamax?

Re:For those who don't want to RTFA, the top 10: (3, Interesting)

dagr8tim (866860) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267354)

Along with #8. I found an old AT&T rotary phone in the basement of my new house. The phone is in mint condition and I decided to use it as a novelity. To my suprise, this phone which has to be 20-30 years old has better sound quality than any of my new "modern" corded or cordless phones.


Just goes to show that cheap & mass produced do not mean quality.

Re:For those who don't want to RTFA, the top 10: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267402)

Damn straight. I still hate the sound quality of cordless phones and insist on corded phones in my house. And just forget cell phones--they're the worst. The sound quality of recently-produced corded phones isn't noticeably worse than the old Ma Bell varieties IMO though. Maybe I'm not that picky.

And I'll jump on the wireless networking bandwagon once someone explains to me why, after spending most of the nineties upgrading AWAY from half-duplex shared media networks, I should now go back.

Re:For those who don't want to RTFA, the top 10: (3, Funny)

Quadraginta (902985) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267488)

Hoo yah! I'm still using the same phone I bought in 1985 from Western Electric. This was not long after the break-up and they were still making 'em like they were going to lease 'em out to you and didn't want to have to come out and do repairs more often then every 25 years. It's built like a tank and has survived dozens of 6 foot dives to the kitchen floor. I'll probably be leaving it in my will to the grandkids.

Got the old-fashioned actual real bell on it, too, none of these namby-pamby tweedle-eedle-eep electronic imitations...harumph...

Got to go take my medication now....

Nothing to see here (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267333)

Nothing to see here move along

now before anyone gets started (5, Insightful)

thegoogler (792786) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267339)

i dont get all the love for kozmo, its like saying "and i want a perpeptual motion machine that makes infinite money too!, AND A PONEY."

there buisness model was fatally flawed, they didnt make any proffit because they basically sold everything at what it cost them, and didnt charge shipping.

Re:now before anyone gets started (5, Insightful)

jericho4.0 (565125) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267357)

You don't get what's to like about a company that sold everything at cost and didn't charge for shipping?

Re:now before anyone gets started (1)

venicebeach (702856) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267360)

Well, we didn't like Kosmo because they made money, we liked it because they delivered stuff to us, and because they basically sold everything at what it cost them and didn't charge shipping!

Re:now before anyone gets started (1)

Osty (16825) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267362)

i dont get all the love for kozmo, its like saying "and i want a perpeptual motion machine that makes infinite money too!, AND A PONEY."

I'd be happy with a pony, personally. The love for Kosmo is an irrational one -- there's no possible way anybody could ever make money providing a service such as Kosmo's (as it was implemented, anyway -- I'm sure there are ways to do it, such as charging more for convenience, not overreaching on too many markets too soon, charging a nominal delivery fee, etc). It's just one of those things where if it were possible for such a service to exist, that'd be awesome.

Re:now before anyone gets started (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267442)

Your grammar and spelling is fatally flawed.

So? (2, Interesting)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267482)

That doesn't mean that it wsan't a bitching service. I mean to-your-door delivery is awesome, but it's hard to get on almost anything but pizza. Plenty of times when I've wanted something, but not wanted to get dressed and go to the store to get it. Even more so when you are talking about things outside of normal business hours.

That is was a bas business idea doesn't make it any less cool to the consumer. I wish they had found a way to make it work because I tell ya, I could go for a new DVD right now, but I don't want to go and drive and get one, espically since I'm pretty sure the video store is closed anyhow.

Re:now before anyone gets started (3, Funny)

maxpublic (450413) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267518)

Kozmo could only work in an arcology setting, and only then if the service charge were added in some fashion, e.g., as part of the rent. Although I can see this as being a very big incentive to move into an arcology, having everything from groceries to movie rentals delivered right to your door. The young forward-thinking geek could move into a much larger and more socially acceptable version of his parents basement while at the same time claiming that he's part of the 'wave of the future', rather than just being afraid of sunlight and face-to-face contact with other human beings.

Max

Keyboard (3, Informative)

seanadams.com (463190) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267340)

You can still buy [pckeyboard.com] a real keyboard. Those guys bought the design from IBM and still produce it in the USA.

I like the feel of an old Antec clicky keyboard better, but the layout on the Unicomp is better.

Get a PS2USB adaptor and it even works great on a Mac.

Re:Keyboard (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267356)

Uh, that's what it says in the article. THANKS FOR THE TIP

Re:Keyboard (5, Funny)

seanadams.com (463190) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267374)

Uh, that's what it says in the article.

Sorry, I'm new here. Are we supposed to read it?

Re:Keyboard (1)

Mr. Roadkill (731328) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267384)

You can still buy a real keyboard. Those guys bought the design from IBM and still produce it in the USA.
Maybe I'll buy one if I ever want a Windows key, or when all the Model M's I've fished out of the garbage over the years stop working. I don't think either of those are likely to happen any time soon.

Re:Keyboard (1)

SoCalChris (573049) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267419)

Maybe I'll buy one if I ever want a Windows key

Nice troll, but those keyboards are available with and without the windows key.

And the old Model M's are nice, but why get a decade old one, when for a reasonable price you can get a brand new one?

Re:Keyboard (1)

Jucius Maximus (229128) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267422)

You said it. I've been using the same Model M keyboard since, well, I was a tot and using the keyboard on dad's computer.

Good thing someone still makes that design.

Re:Keyboard (2, Interesting)

log2.0 (674840) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267404)

That is awesome. I have been wanting a no-frills no-media keys NORMAL keyboard.

Those MS keyboards are sooo stupid. They decided to group the F-keys in groups of 3 rather than 4, the delete key is twice as big as it should be and i HATE it when I go to press insert and I click Print Screen instead...GRRR

Ahh, that's my rant for today :)

Re:Keyboard (2, Interesting)

User0x45 (530857) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267489)

I'm typing this on a "Happy Hacker II" It is small, jet black, with 'proper' key placement of my control key.

I get so many compliments and questions. I really never quite understood why the masses didn't follow. A very nice piece of 'windows key'-less technology!

Re:Keyboard (1)

Adult film producer (866485) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267437)

I was lucky enough to find 4 of the original keyboards at a garage sale last summer, the guy said they were garbage, so I asked if he'd sell em for $0.50/pc .. $2.00 in all :D I didn't realize they were so heavy.. work beautifully though :)

RIP (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267344)

Microsoft BOB [toastytech.com]
*Sniff*

Re:RIP (2, Informative)

dagr8tim (866860) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267425)

I had never heard of bob until now. But looking at the screen shots reminds me of the Navagator [computerhope.com] for Packard Bell.

It did basically the same thing for windows 3.1(1). That was the main I hated to do a factory restore on that computer. You had to manually remove the damned program after you were done.

Better info about BOB here... (0, Troll)

oldosadmin (759103) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267434)

Re:Better info about BOB here... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267471)

If better means 'not really better but on my site with my ads' then yes

Re:RIP (1)

Antony-Kyre (807195) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267532)

I remember Microsoft Bob. I wonder if I could still find my CD of it, let alone any stickers. (Kind of reminds me of those Wal-Mart commercials.)

Again? (3, Funny)

Alphanos (596595) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267349)

Wow, it sounds like CNet must have pretty poor editorial standards to post another article with an identical subject so soon after their last one.

Re:Again? (4, Funny)

datafr0g (831498) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267361)

Reminds me of another popular news site...

:)

Re:Again? (2, Informative)

dcclark (846336) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267367)

This was an article related to the "Top 10 Dot-Com Busts" that was linked here yesterday. It was linked from that article. This isn't a dupe on anyone's part, just a companion article.

Re:Again? (1)

Osty (16825) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267381)

This was an article related to the "Top 10 Dot-Com Busts" that was linked here yesterday. It was linked from that article. This isn't a dupe on anyone's part, just a companion article.

And it wouldn't be Slashdot if they didn't take two inter-related articles and split them up across two different stories (double the ad impressions!). Now they just need to dupe each one at least once to complete the process (quadruple the ad impressions!).

dell quietkey (1)

alienfluid (677872) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267352)

i like my dell quietkey the best. it's got it "clickety" feel (even though it's called a quiet key) and it just feels good. what's your favorite keyboard?

Re:dell quietkey (1)

narkotix (576944) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267391)

any of the keyboards that come with proliant servers...

Re:dell quietkey (1)

drsmithy (35869) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267444)

The second generation Microsoft Natural Keyboard.

They had a built-in 2-port USB hub and the extra Back/Forward/Home, etc keys (useful for custom key mappings) but _didn't_ have the fucked-up reorganisation of the Home/End/Insert/Etc and arrow keys that plague today's models.

Re:dell quietkey (1)

rylin (688457) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267548)

While you're about to get modded to "-1, Blasphemy", I have to applaud your wisdom and enlightenment.

The MS Natural Keyboard pro is without a doubt the best keyboard I've ever used.
I've got a Natural Keyboard pro at home, and a Natural Keyboard elite at work (but sadly, that's where they started reorganizing the insert-block).

The Natural Keyboard, along with Intellimouse Explorer 3.0 or Intellimouse 1.1 are some of the best peripherals ever made.

Re:dell quietkey (1)

canadiangoose (606308) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267445)

I can agree that the old Dell queitkey boards are decent, though the new black ones are terrible and they gum up all the time.

As for my favourite keyboard, it would be my old KeyTronic 101-key with a coiled cord and a switch on the back to flip between 'XT' and 'AT Enhanced' modes. I found it in the trash! Excellent keyboard, just amazing. I can't stand the stupid 104 key Windows boards.

Re:dell quietkey (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267455)

yes, keytronic was my old favorite as well. however, i really like the keyboard on my t41 thinkpad. it is extremely light action yet you know exactly where the activation point is. now, when i switch to other laptops or desktops, i find that i often mistype because i press them too gently and fail to activate the switch. i'll never understand people who like to pound keyboards... a light touch on a good keyboard and you won't get any fatique.

now, where can i find a good three-button optical mouse that doesn't look like it was melted, isn't transparent blinky crap, and has three normal buttons instead of some tiny scroll wheel for a middle button??

multithreaded GUIs (0, Offtopic)

CoughDropAddict (40792) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267355)

Seriously, if you never used BeOS, you don't know what you're missing.

I love Mac OS X, but a sluggish GUI is a sacrifice I've learned to live with.

Re:multithreaded GUIs (1)

Osty (16825) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267400)

Seriously, if you never used BeOS, you don't know what you're missing.

There's nothing stopping you from writing multi-thread GUIs in current operating systems (well, at least not in Windows, which is where I have most of my experience). Be just "forced" you to do so (as I understand it, you couldn't not write a multi-threaded GUI app). From a Windows-centric point of view there are some hoops to jump through (accessing controls from a different thread than that which spawned them), but it's certainly doable as long as you stay away from broken shit like mshta (which I believe is dead, though that doesn't stop people from trying to use it).

Re:multithreaded GUIs (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267433)

Shut the FUCK UP you pathetic clown.

Go cry with the Amiga/Xbox/Dreamcast about your dead platform.

Re:multithreaded GUIs (1)

Tuxedo Jack (648130) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267526)

I've got BeOS release 5 running on a Pentium II at 300MHz with 192MB of RAM, and it's running unbelievably quickly. Windows XP boasts of it's "fast boot time," but this boots on _that_ machine in 15 seconds. XP would take five minutes on a machine like that. All BeOS needs is better hardware support, and it'd be a viable desktop OS.

Keyboards (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267359)

Model M > All Thank you. I can't type worth a damn on any other keyboard.

I miss the Slashdot dupe filter (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267363)

Oh wait, that hasn't been invented yet. Never mind.

Good keyboards (1)

IvyKing (732111) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267366)

I tend to agree with their sentiments, most modern keyboards are way to mushy and too light. My best keyboard was the one that came with the Compaq Deskpro's in the mid 1980's, although the Sun type 5C was a somewhat close second.

OTOH, modern keyboards sure beat the feel of a model 33 (used a few of those in school many moons ago).

Space travel - no kidding (4, Insightful)

starseeker (141897) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267372)

Space is essentially the only frontier we have left, and I think humanity needs a frontier. The Earth is fully populated now, in the sense that only the very remotest regions remain unexplored and all regions are claimed.

Practical is good and all, but if we wait until we solve all our problems here on Earth first we'll be stuck on this dirtball until the sun hits Red Giant phase. Human nature being what it is.

I say Let's Get Out There! Now! It pushes limits, it's positive, and it pushes technology. Sounds good to me! May China can provoke another space race - I sure hope so. One-upmanship seems to be the only real way to get any serious funding :-(.

Re:Space travel - no kidding (1)

Trepalium (109107) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267438)

As long as this one-upmanship doesn't spill over to some kind of arms race. I don't think we need any new and improved civilization destroying weapons at this point.

Re:Space travel - no kidding (4, Interesting)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267460)

I prefer to put it another way. If you're not for space exploration they you must be for a conservation of resources. That is, you must be for a scaling back of population growth on earth and per capita energy consumption. This is just obvious. If the population of the earth keeps growing we won't have enough resources to maintain our current level of living conditions. Studies of population have shown that as the affluence of the society increases, the birth rate slows to match the death rate and population stablises. Or to put it less tactfully: poor people breed faster than rich people. So if you consider the earth as a closed system you have to either raise the standard of living around the world to a level where population growth ceases "naturally" or you have to commit the resources of the rich into forcing the poor not to breed. Would anyone care to guess which is more likely? Right, so if we're willing to agree that considering the earth as a closed system leads to the logical conclusion that the world population growth must be controlled by force, then I can sum up your two options right now..

You are either for the expansion of growth of the human population off the earth and into space or you are for mass murder and restricted personal liberty to control population growth here on earth.

Personally I don't think there's a choice. We must expand into space. Of course, there's also the third option. The so called what, me worry? approach. Which is to just pop your hands over your ears and sing "lalalalalala" and hope the whole issue will go away. Thing is, we can afford to do this, but chances are that the next generation won't.

Re:Space travel - no kidding (2, Insightful)

Solra Bizna (716281) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267537)

> If the population of the earth keeps growing we won't
> have enough resources to maintain our current level of
> living conditions.

I told that to my family. They basically said "God will take care of everything for us." *sigh*

Even if I were religious, I would be of the attitude that God helps those who help themselves. Blindly trusting God to solve all of our problems isn't a good idea.

Commence flamewar.

-:sigma.SB

Re:Space travel - no kidding (2, Insightful)

Concerned Onlooker (473481) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267470)

Space is essentially the only frontier we have left...

The only external one, perhaps. The truly greatest frontier still wide open is the human mind. Going to Mars is a parlor trick compared to trying to figure out the intricacies of the brain. And there are more human benefits to it as well. Exploration of outer spaces is probably just a way to avoid exploration of the truly terrifying inner spaces. But that's human nature I guess. The answer is always "out there" somewhere.

Re:Space travel - no kidding (0, Offtopic)

Tsunam (815302) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267515)

*laughs* everyone always forgets the oceans. We know more about space, then we know about our oceans. Sad that its always forgotten.

Re:Space travel - no kidding (4, Insightful)

Zaffle (13798) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267538)


Space is essentially the only frontier we have left, and I think humanity needs a frontier. The Earth is fully populated now, in the sense that only the very remotest regions remain unexplored and all regions are claimed.

You must be kidding! There is a vast expanse that has only been touch upon, only a bit more than space itself. Undersea oceans and ocean floors. These vast, and relativily unexplored plains offer mountains and valleys that you only ever see on other planets.

The technology to truely explore them is perhaps even more difficult that space, and its in our own backyard.

Kozmo # 1 Technology & DotCom Bust (1)

EyeSeaYou (905899) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267382)

How sad... wasn't Kozmo.com in the Top 10 Dot Com Flops article, too? Yes [cnet.com] . What's sad is that you see all of these bike messengers in NYC still touting their Kozmo.com messenger bags. And wasn't this [overheardintheuk.com] in like 30 previous posts, too?

It's all about the batteries (2, Interesting)

starseeker (141897) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267390)

EV1 was never workable - the battery weight and expense, combined with limited range, made it Not Practical as a mass market car from day one.

Gotta love the bit about recalling and destroying the cars due to liability concerns. Thank you US legal system. We really ought to outlaw innovation, exploration, and all that stuff - it's too dangerous. Can let people run risks - heaven forbid.

Re:It's all about the batteries (2, Informative)

networkBoy (774728) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267484)

It was perfectly practable for a commuter car.
battery expense ammortized over 5 years (expected lifespan) yeilded a cost only slightly higher than gas prices of the time (by a few hundred dollars). With fuel costs expected to rise (which they have) the crossover point for the battery pack is 2.5-3 years.
-nB

Re:It's all about the batteries (2, Insightful)

ldspartan (14035) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267499)

So you just completely ignore the cost of the energy to charge it, huh? Must be nice doing that...

--
lds

My take on these 10 (2, Interesting)

ReformedExCon (897248) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267393)

Manned space exploration
I am of the opinion that sending humans into space is the most effective use of our "space dollars". It is fine to send up robots to collect data samples, but we also need to know the safest and cheapest way to package up live astronauts, drive them around the solar system, and bring them home safely. With the current shuttle tech, we are looking at neither the safest, nor the cheapest way of sending up live astronauts and bringing them home extra crispy. There are a lot of barriers to getting rid of the shuttle program, but discarding it for a more future-looking program (even the Apollo and Mercury missions were more forward-looking than the shuttles) would rejuvenate interest in science and physics in particular.

Kozmo.com
Never heard of it.

Napster
I don't see the attraction. A centralized database where your connections can be tracked and you are at the bandwidth mercy of a single uploading server. No thanks. I'll stick with BitTorrent.

The Concorde
I am going to agree. Actually, any type of supersonic aircraft would be great for longhaul flights.

GM's EV1
That is possibly the ugliest car I've seen since the Pontiac Aztec. It is only out-uglied by the Honda hybrid.

The original Palm Pilot
They like the stability, but I like the stability of my TV remote control. It just doesn't do very much except what was originally programmed in.

Good keyboards
There are plenty of good keyboards, Microsoft even makes some good ones. What they are asking for are those loud IBM keyboards that feel like the clumsy typewriters they were adapted from.

Wires
No. Make wireless faster.

LPs
This will continue to be a niche format. CDs provide the same quality sound playback for the human-audible range of sound. I imagine that it might be useful if you were a dog and had to listen to ultrasonic music, otherwise... not useful.

The Newton
They praise it because it failed? I don't understand what they want to say.

Re:My take on these 10 (1)

EyeSeaYou (905899) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267423)

Kozmo was great. You could rent a flick and some munchies to enjoy the pot that the deliverymen sold. Not that I used it... ahem.

Re:My take on these 10 (0)

nunchux (869574) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267530)

Manned space exploration
I am of the opinion that sending humans into space is the most effective use of our "space dollars". It is fine to send up robots to collect data samples, but we also need to know the safest and cheapest way to package up live astronauts, drive them around the solar system, and bring them home safely. With the current shuttle tech, we are looking at neither the safest, nor the cheapest way of sending up live astronauts and bringing them home extra crispy. There are a lot of barriers to getting rid of the shuttle program, but discarding it for a more future-looking program (even the Apollo and Mercury missions were more forward-looking than the shuttles) would rejuvenate interest in science and physics in particular.


Yes... We have to keep going, and as callous as it sounds we have to understand that some lives will be lost, but we have to keep going. Space is a frontier-- and pioneers often have short lives, but understand it's work the risk. U.S. Astronauts know they may not be coming when they're launched into space and the American public needs to understand this too... Because losing a few Taikonauts won't slow China down for a second.

Kozmo.com
Never heard of it.


That's the problem, and it's too bad. A web-based convenience store with a decent deli that delivers to your door.

Of course if you didn't live in a major city when they were in operation you wouldn't know about them, but it doesn't mean it wasn't a great service.

Napster
I don't see the attraction. A centralized database where your connections can be tracked and you are at the bandwidth mercy of a single uploading server. No thanks. I'll stick with BitTorrent.


Well, you can be tracked through Bittorrent too... Your IP is available to all other users.

Either way, they're waxing nostalgic. The Napster model is dead, but when it was around it was amazing. I think it was also a great leveller-- no longer would you have to rely on friend's opinions, music rags or taking chances on $15 CD's to find new bands, you could download it and see for yourself. I never took chances with CD's before 1998-ish, and only bought a few a year from bands I knew I liked... Now I buy hundreds, many of them from the 60's-80's from bands I never would have heard of if I didn't download.

The Concorde
I am going to agree. Actually, any type of supersonic aircraft would be great for longhaul flights.


I never understood this, why did they ground it after a single crash? There must be more to the story.

GM's EV1
That is possibly the ugliest car I've seen since the Pontiac Aztec. It is only out-uglied by the Honda hybrid.


Kind of ugly, but no one was leasing them for the looks. The author is bemoaning the fact that there are no electric vehicles in production any more, which is a crying shame-- and I suspect Big Oil may have something to do with it.

Wires
No. Make wireless faster.


Keep wires available AND make wireless faster. They don't have to be mutually exclusive, and wired devices make sense in many cases. Wireless phone and internet connections are somewhat less reliable and much less secure. Cordless phones are at the mercy of their battery, and nothing sucks more than having it run out during an important call. And if you have ample desk space and don't share a network there's no reason besides looks that every device needs to be wireless-- a usb cable to my printer works just fine.

LPs
This will continue to be a niche format. CDs provide the same quality sound playback for the human-audible range of sound. I imagine that it might be useful if you were a dog and had to listen to ultrasonic music, otherwise... not useful.


You may not hear a difference. Others do. The sound isn't "better" by any technical definition, but it is different (some say more "warm", even more "human".)

Just like photographers and filmmakers will use film as long as it still exists, musicians will release vinyl recordings as long as they can... You can't apply arguments like "CDs provide the same quality sound playback for the human-audible range of sound" to artistic decisions. Artists go by "feel", not tech specs.

The Newton
They praise it because it failed? I don't understand what they want to say.


They're making a cheap joke that's been repeated to death. The Newton was a great device and very much ahead of its time, and the handwriting recognition problems were quickly resolved-- unfortunately the stigma from too many Doonesbury/Simpsons jokes stuck.

I'll second that keyboards vote (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267395)

I miss a good gaming keyboard that will actually let me push more than two keys at once. And don't get me started on that windows key. Many a game of 3v3 war2 was clobbered due to it...

Keyboards.. (1)

mrbill (4993) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267398)

Best keyboard I've run across lately is the Matias Tactile Pro [tactilepro.com] . Designed for a Mac, but works great on a PC/Linux machine as well (I'm on one right now, hooked to a KVM that has both a Windows system and a Mac mini on it).

LP's (1)

MrShaggy (683273) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267399)

There are a bunch of guys that are currently using lasers to decode the LP then digitize it. They then take it through some audio cleaning, to get the hiss out. Then they can set it to cd or wahtever. I saw this on telvision, they are currently doing this for the Library of Congress (I believe). They are able to get the sound off the old wax cylanders. I Wish I had a link for this.

Re:LP's (1)

Concerned Onlooker (473481) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267500)

I say good riddance to LPs. I heard about CDs when I was in high school so I deliberately did not buy too many vinyl disks in anticipation of this fabulous new tech. And it never failed that when I did buy one it would have at least one serious pop or skip even after a careful wipe with the Discwasher. Even if the sound is slightly inferior it has been well worth it in my mind to go to CD.

The only thing I miss about LPs was a the great amount of print real estate for liner notes, photos, etc.

Re:LP's (1)

Kymermosst (33885) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267509)

There are a bunch of guys that are currently using lasers to decode the LP then digitize it. They then take it through some audio cleaning, to get the hiss out. Then they can set it to cd or wahtever. I saw this on telvision, they are currently doing this for the Library of Congress (I believe). They are able to get the sound off the old wax cylanders. I Wish I had a link for this.

Gee, I just typed "Laser Turntable" into Google, and got a link right away. You can get one for $15,000. [elpj.com]

I miss slim keyboards. (1)

eingram (633624) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267401)

It's getting more difficult to find keyboards without "extra features" (also called programmable buttons). And I've yet to find a quality wireless keyboard (radio) that is slim and lacking these "extra features".

Does anyone know of any slim, wireless keyboards?

Re:I miss slim keyboards. (1)

agibbs (729458) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267428)

The Apple bluetooth keyboard [apple.com] is an excellent keyboard. Full sized, but without any of those stupid media buttons.

Re:I miss slim keyboards. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267523)

I personally love the Logitech DiNivo slim keyboard. DiNivo [logitech.com]
Granted it's sans-numeric pad; the numeric-pad is seperate from the main keyboard and acts as a great remote control from other locations in the room...

just my 2 cents..

Common Sense... (1)

NeuroManson (214835) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267408)

Could have saved us from losing most of the good technologies, and is the prime technological loss to trump them all.

Manned Space Flight (1)

QuantumG (50515) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267409)

I recently read M o o n r u s h [thespacereview.com] . The renouned commercial spaceflight author Dennis Wingo makes the argument that for a $20 billion investment humans could return to the Moon perminately, mine precious metals needed to kickstart the hydrogen economy and eventually turn a profit. That much investment includes all the launches and all the equipment needed. Of course, it won't happen with some angel investor handing over that much capital at once with some vague hope of a return on investment. No, the way it will happen is with small incremental missions with each returning an investment. Dennis Wingo's current project is Orbital Recovery [orbitalrecovery.com] . They're developing a space tug to station keep satellites when their fuel runs out to keep them operational beyond their designated decommission dates. The space tug that is developed as a result is an integral part of the return to the moon system. How long? Give it 20 years.

Space Cadet Keyboard! (1)

starseeker (141897) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267410)

I want my PC version of the space cadet keyboard, ding nabbit! Complete with absurdly overbuild mechanical durability and enough shift keys to fly an airplane with! It's not quite a mind meld with your computer but it's more or less the next best thing ;-).

I lucked into an old IBM keyboard, and it will undoubtedly outlive the rest of my computer. Why the heck is there no market for durable goods any more? Or rather, why won't anyone MAKE durable goods? Has pride in workmanship given over entirely to next quarter profits? Gah.

Re:Space Cadet Keyboard! (1)

Trepalium (109107) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267468)

I think it's the walmart effect. No one is willing to pay $20 for a durable part when they can get something that does the job for $19 (even if it won't last half as long). Durability and workmanship is far secondary to cost these days, except perhaps on luxury items.

durable goods (2, Insightful)

j1m+5n0w (749199) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267539)

Or rather, why won't anyone MAKE durable goods?
Because, for the most part, a consumer can't tell the difference between a durable product and a non-durable product until well after they've bought it. See The Market for Lemons [wikipedia.org] and/or for some insight into what happens to a market when buyers can't distinguish between high and low quality products.

Huh? (2, Insightful)

Jeremi (14640) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267427)

the last people to explore the final frontier are past retirement age--and so are the engineers who put them there. In other words, next time we go into space, we're going to have to retrain people from scratch. There may be no firsthand knowledge of what it's like to be in space or to build a space vehicle


Not to be a curmudgeon, but there is a Space Shuttle in orbit as I type this text. I'm pretty sure its occupants know "what it's like to be in space".


OTOH, I think manned space travel is going to remain an expensive novelty until we can massively improve our dollars-per-kilogram-to-orbit. And that will require either some revolutionary breakthrough in rocket science (doubtful), or a space elevator or some other alternative means of getting mass to orbit. Until one of those things happens, unmanned probes and more basic research on the "get mass out of Earth's gravity well" problem are the smart way to go.

Re:Huh? (1)

bbkingadrock (543696) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267527)

the difference is possibly the definition of the 'final frontier'.... being in orbit in the outer reaches of earth's gravity, versus exploring space beyond said orbit

Palm Pilot? (1)

NanoGator (522640) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267429)

Erm. I used to have one of the original. It was okay, but I don't miss it. I liked its simplicity and its battery life. Heck, I even liked all the 3rd party apps out there. But my big beef with it was in giving it something uesful to do. Eventually I settled on AvantGo and Dope Wars. That was kinda neat... but .. meh.

Okay, this is just me, but I really didn't find a use for PDAs until they started coming with wifi built in and support for ginormous memory cards. Heck, I played with a Palm the other day that had a camera built in. How handy is that?

I don't miss the old Palm Pilots, but I do like modern PDAs. They don't feel like a solution in search of a problem.

Ctrl in its correct place. (2, Interesting)

corsec67 (627446) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267441)

On the first computer I used, a TRS-80 Model 100, the Control key is next to the A button, and the caps lock is a tiny button to the bottom right of the keyboard.

How often does Caps Lock get used relative to Ctrl? Why was it moved? Even in Windows, copy, cut and paste use Ctrl.

http://store.yahoo.com/pfuca-store/haphackeylit1.h tml [yahoo.com]
These keyboard look ok, but they don't sell a split egronomic version.

I can map my keyboard, with xmodmap on linux, but it is hard to do that on a per user basis on a windows box, and I definitly can't do that on the windows boxes at school.

Re:Ctrl in its correct place. (1)

IvyKing (732111) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267478)

On the first computer I used, a TRS-80 Model 100, the Control key is next to the A button, and the caps lock is a tiny button to the bottom right of the keyboard.

Buy a keyboard with the "Unix" layout (e.g. Sun type 6). The Caps Lock next to the "A" key is an IBM PC thing - just one of many stupid design decisions left over from the original 5150. Maybe it was someone who wanted to kill WordStar (which used the ctrl keys for moving around)...

My first computer keyboard (Televideo 925) had the control key next to the "A" key.

Best. (Apple) Keyboard. EVER! (1)

Chris Tucker (302549) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267452)

The Apple Extended Keyboard.

Not the Extended II, which is pretty good, but the original Extended, with the rainbow Apple in the lower left hand corner.

Compared to the Extended, every other keyboard feels like I'm poking at a slab of Silly Putty.

My take on the list (4, Interesting)

Kymermosst (33885) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267459)

1. Manned Space Exploration

Well, I agree that reestablishing travel to the moon and beyond is important, the International Space Station is an important stepping stone that deserves focus. The reason I think so is that I truly believe it's going to take a multinational effort to get to Mars and back.

2. Kozmo.com

Make up your mind, CNET, technology you miss, or giant flop [cnet.com] . I suppose it could be both, but even if Kozmo had stayed in business, it could never compete with my neighborhood grocery store.

3. Napster

Any opinion I might express about this would likely start a flame war, so I'll leave this one alone.

4. Concorde

You can't really miss what even yourselves admit was out of reach to almost everyone. I don't seem to miss it at all. How do you miss something you never really had?

5. GM's EV1

Zero Emission Vehicle. ROFLMAO. Zero-emission as long as you don't count the power plant that burned (coal|oil|gas|atomic nuclei) and polluted somone else's back yard. Sure, I suppose the power could have been photoelectric or wind produced, but if you believe no harm to the earth was done in the process of manufacturing those systems, you're clueless. (Hint: Strip mining for metals, processing ore, smelting, doping chemicals for solar, etc). Not that I have a problem with any of the above, but let's be realistic here. There's no such thing as a "Zero Emission Vehicle".

6. The Original Palm Pilot

I don't know. My Zire 31 does everything the original did, plus color and MP3s. I've been eying the Tungsten E2 as an upgrade. Only third party apps have ever crashed it, and that's only twice after over a year of use. The Palm-supplied apps have been rock solid. A lot like the original Palm Pilot.

7. Good Keyboards

Agreed.

8. Wires

You miss wires? Uh, you made the choice to go wireless. If you truly miss wires, just switch back, right? It's not like your old phone company disappeared, and you can't buy ethernet cables. Oh wait... the convenience outweighs the disadvantages of wireless you point to. I guess you don't really miss wires after all.

9. LPs

My wife is an archaeologist. She's told me about digging these up.

10. The Newton

The Newton was good for a laugh, but it was also a good lesson for future manufacturers of PDAs. Without Apple's failure, would we really have seen Palm's success?

Re:My take on the list (1)

SetupWeasel (54062) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267528)

Sorry, the ISS is a farce and a waste of billions. We needed a station capable of in-space construction even if it was of the most rudimentary design. The ISS is just another orbiting coffee can where people who call themselves scientists can play with yo-yos.

It is time for NASA to think beyond the next shuttle launch, and start cultivating a fucking reason for us to be in space. A mission to Mars at this time is idiotic. Instead, let's concentrate on an orbital construction/production facility so we can actually capitalize on the advantages of zero gravity. But NO! We are content to make mere potshots at the rest of the solar system without bulding the infrastructure that may one day make interplanetary travel really viable.

they missed one... (2, Funny)

nilbog (732352) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267479)

I liked punch cards... I mean, they had the added benefit that if your drive broke, you could actually SEE the data...

My take on selected ones (1)

number7 (86642) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267480)

#1: Absolutely.
OK, so the direct science of manned spaceflight is dubious, but we need the romance of space and it can really help to push along major innovation. If we let the market do it, all we get are Microsoft products.

#5: SOOOO impractical.
Make it accelerate well, not be beholden a third of its life to a power cord and actually USEFUL and it'll take off. THat's why I love hybrid and fuel cell technology.

#7: Oh SO much. I have three old IBM keyboards, one a "UNIX" keyboard (no keypad). Built like tanks. I've pounded on them in frustration and they take it like Tina Turner. I love overengineered products.

#8: Funny,
most of my phones in the house (3 out of four) are corded. Even better, two of those are from the '20s and '30s. That ring is just so beautiful. I just love getting called.

#9: Also funny,
in the past three years I've bought far more vinyl than plastic. Used and new, to be sure, but the ratio is about 3:1, vinyl to plastic.

You can choose to be nostalgiac for the past or, like me, just live in it (so says the man whose newest means of transportation is over 25 years old and has two wheels...).

Okay, I'll bite (1)

XanC (644172) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267521)

so says the man whose newest means of transportation is over 25 years old and has two wheels

Are we talking about a 1970 model bicycle?

I miss word processors... (2, Insightful)

confused philosopher (666299) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267483)

That can start in under 2 seconds. I don't see why current word processors like Open Office and Word need 30 seconds to load, when all they are doing is taking input from the keyboard 90% of the time. Why can't they load a simple screen and then fill in the rest behind the scenes later so you can start typing when you open the darn program, and not a minute later? It makes no sense. People are going to start to wonder why we don't use PAPER for writing anymore.

Speaking of paper, there's another technology I'll miss, especially in the bathroom, unless they get something better.

Re:I miss word processors... (2, Funny)

davesag (140186) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267536)

Speaking of paper, there's another technology I'll miss, especially in the bathroom, unless they get something better.

You mean no-one has explained the 3 shells to you?

My own list (1)

Erik Fish (106896) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267487)

  1. Multi-disc optical drives for PCs
  2. Motherboards without built-in sound/RAID/etc.
  3. DejaNews (although Google Groups prior to the interface downgrade would be acceptable)
  4. Hardware modems
  5. Pudding Pops

Technology lost (1, Insightful)

Z00L00K (682162) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267490)

is the art of efficient programming. Today we are running multi-core with gigahertz but the same task takes still about the same time to perform as when we were running the 3MHz Z80-processor with 32k RAM in the beginning of the 80's.

What we need today is not another version of Windows needing even more computer resources, what we need today is a safer computer environment.

napster??? (1)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267491)

legal issues aside, how was napster any better than the current breed of p2p apps?

it only let you share .mp3 files, couldn't do multi-source downloading, couldn't resume, was heavily centralized, etc...

all in all, I'd say that napster was pretty bad. even gnutella (acquisition/limewire) has evolved to be miles better than napster.

napster's popularity was it's only saving grace. end of story.

(oh, and about the keyboards.... fill a computer lab/library with buckling spring keyboards, and see how long you keep your sanity. clickclickclickclickclickclick)

Internet... (4, Insightful)

gmuslera (3436) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267492)

... as in:
* Spamless Internet
* Virusless Internet
* Popupless Internet
* Bannerless Internet
* etcless Internet

Of course that the net has evolved, and a lot, but sometimes one miss those old days when your mail were mail, when browsing pages retrieved almost only the content you wanted, and even the pages were really static, without things popping up, moving, blinking or weighting far more than the useful content of what you really want to read.

Re:Internet... (1)

skingers6894 (816110) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267529)

At least for the first three just get of Windows and IE you can have your Internet back!

The only one technologty I miss (1)

aepervius (535155) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267493)

is the anti-dupe article technology.

top 10 /. top 10 posts! (4, Informative)

Dahamma (304068) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267497)

Yeah, CNET is having a top 10 celebration for its 10th aniversary... can we just point everyone to it rather than having to make each one a new article!?

http://www.cnet.com/4520-11136_1-6250162-1.html?ta g=bottom [cnet.com]

OmniKey Ultra, best keyboard ever (1)

cool_st_elizabeth (730631) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267501)

I have an original OmniKey Ultra, made by Northgate Computer Systems. I'll give it up when someone pries it from my cold dead hands. It weighs several pounds, but has a light touch, and the paint didn't wear off the keys after the first few days of typing. The letters and numbers are embedded into the plastic. The OmniKey Ultra is so good, there are still companies who are willing to repair it if anything goes wrong. Just try getting a "modern" keyboard repaired, or a pair of shoes, or a VCR.

My 2 cents (2, Interesting)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267519)

Here is my list:

1. Software optimized for keyboard speed. Most software focuses on the mouse, which makes it easier to learn, but you just don't get the same productivity once the learning curve is crossed. Outside of art and diagrams, the keyboard is potentially quicker (once learned).

2. XBase (dBase dirivative) for table processing. It showed what nimble table-oriented and/or collection-orientation can do. SQL is just not factorable enough to do some things as well, taking more than 3 times the same amount of code in many cases. The language had flaws, but the table-side seemed to straddle the line between SQL and array-oriented languages that derived from APL (and still used for financial analysis).

3. Developing with real GUI's. The web puts all kinds of odd constraints and hurdles in front of creating good, controllable, and quick GUI's. Before the web I spent about 30% of my time on interface issues and 70% on the processing itself. With the web that seems reversed.

4. DEC VAX file versioning. The VAX kept a copy of 2 or so save generations in case you foobarred something. With disk being cheap (for at least text files) I would like to see something similar brought back.
     

Amiga... Betamax... Alpha AXP cpu's... (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#13267524)

The Amiga was a decade or more ahead of its time, but you won't buy one in the store today.

Betamax - we should all know the story here. At the time, everyone knew that Beta was superior to VHS in every way except in terms of movie selection at the video store. It's a crying shame.

AlphaServers with AXP CPU's... Yes I know it is still possible to purchase these, but not for long. I am still stunned by how Intel was allowed to buy the Alpha technology just to own the competition's processor technology and chipmaking plant, dodge the MMU patent lawsuit (which would have been expensive for Intel) and allow Intel to write the closing chapter on the superior Alpha processor technology.

Intel's aquisition of DEC's competing Alpha technology is a clear example of Capitalism gone very wrong.

featurama (1)

halleluja (715870) | more than 9 years ago | (#13267547)

In this list: substitute anything that has grown more features over the last years.

For example, I use a mobile to call, no need for Java, camera's, compasses and christmas bells.

Also, computer quality has degraded, cars are more difficult to fix etc.

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