Unless you’re in a museum, you’re never going to hear the sound of a busy signal, or the hiss of a cassette tape before the music begins playing.
Even worse, you’ll never experience again the pure visceral satisfaction of ending a heated conversation with a numbskull by slamming down the phone handset into the cradle. Stabbing at the off section of a touchscreen just doesn’t cut it, no matter how straight you make the stabbing finger.
Change is an ever turning wheel, dudes, and as the wheel turns, it leaves many things behind.
And technology? Dudes, that stuff rolls by faster than almost anything else.
I don’t know if you’re old enough to remember the introduction of the modem into the general population, but, if you are, you’ll never forget the ooooppp-eeeeeppppp-squellllccchhhhh-bbbeeeoooooommmppp sound of it. The amazing thing is that we once thought it would be around forever. For such a futuristic movie, the Matrix got one thing really, really wrong (in addition to continuing on with two horrible sequels when it should have stopped after the first): It posited that the modem and its annoying connection sound was here to stay.
When Neo is disconnected from the Matrix and birthed into the real world, the sound we hear as we follow him down the rabbit hole is the sound of a modem connecting.
For me, one sound I’ll miss is the wak-wak-wak sound of typewriter keys hitting ribbon and paper. That’s a comforting sound to me as I used it in my profession for quite a while. Using a typewriter, we actually outputted the finished product the first time. There was none of this going back and editing as we were writing. You’d better get it right the first time, or be prepared to go back and retype the whole page.
Because you know the white out (or liquid paper) would never do a good enough job of erasing a mistake so it looked like it never happened. Every single keystroke. . . it meant something.
The ding as we reached the end of a line and slid the cartridge back to begin again. . . all gone.
And I couldn’t be happier. Sure, I miss the sound, but the actual process. . . the machine itself? Oh, heck no. I love being able to edit as I go, knowing that I can goof up and still not have it show. It’s so wonderful. So freeing.
It’s only the sound I miss.
And I’m not the only one, either. The good folks over at Wired Magazine have a nice little list of the tech sounds that are going the way of the modem and the typewriter. The only thing it’s missing are actual sound files so you can hear what you’ll be missing.
Easily rectified. Head over to FindSounds and just type in the sound for which you’re searching and — poof — there it is.
Time rolls on, dudes, and we all see things as they disappear. But then the wheel comes around again, bringing with it something new and unexperienced before. It’s a wonderful cycle.