History of Computers

Progression of Computers, and the Computer We Carry in Our Pockets Everyday

It goes without saying that computers are virtually everywhere. Due to their ubiquity, and advancements in technology, it is difficult to remember a time before mobile devices and the Internet took over.

While laptops are still popular, it seems more and more consumers are opting for tablets that are about the size of a small notebook. Many use iPads or Kindles to read the newest bestseller or watch their favorite TV shows and movies. Schools offer them to students in lieu of textbooks, while business professionals view conferences happening on the other side of the country, or even the world.

Smartphones now carry many of the same capabilities, and are even smaller. It is insane when you realize that most of this technology was not available even five years ago, but if you really think about it, with smartphones being a major communication tool, most of us carry a personal computer with us on a daily basis! In fact, 25% of smartphone users admit to using their devices primarily for the Internet. That’s something that you couldn’t do a decade ago.

In 2003, a laptop was the way to go. Twenty years ago, they were a fairly new technology, and much heavier. The Internet was also in its infancy at that point, so laptops (and PCs for that matter) were mostly used for producing office documents and playing Solitaire.

However, what some consider to be the first personal computer actually dates back more than 40 years, the Kenbak-1, introduced in 1970. Throughout the decade and into the 80s and 90s, we saw machines like the Apple II, IBM 5150, and Commodore 64 hit the market. As the technology progressed, the memory increased, while the size of the machines decreased.

That brings us to 2013. Nowadays, desktops and laptops are considerably lighter than their bulky predecessors. Can you imagine lugging around something like the Superbrain PC the way you would a laptop, or even a flatscreen monitor and tower? Probably not. The last 15 years alone have introduced many revolutionary concepts that we only thought existed in futuristic sci-fi movies. By the end of this decade, we’re sure to see more.

Will mobile devices replace computers completely? Considering many offices and schools, and even homes, still use them extensively, it is not likely. However, they could make for a very interesting counterpart, as we are seeing right now.