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2011/01/13

Quick Notes: The Doomed Dozen, The New Radio

MaximumPC has list of 12 Technologies on the Bring of Disappearing. This is a bit more long-view than I normally go, but it makes sense.
The Doomed Half-Dozen
  1. Pre-recorded Physical Media
  2. Stereoscopic (with glasses) 3D TVs
  3. eBook Readers
  4. Consumer-Level Hard Drives
  5. Keys
  6. Handheld Gaming Consoles
The Half-Dozen Survivors
  1. Digital Music/Media Players
  2. Landline telephone
  3. Internal Combustion Automobile Engine
  4. The PC
  5. The Keyboard
  6. The Mouse
I do have some quibbles with the list, and some more quibbles with the presentation of the list. For instance, if you're going to keep the landline phone alive as a bulwark against power-outages, then why show a portable phone, whose base unit will die as soon as the power is cut? And the eBook reader holds a niche in that the screen makes it a low-energy device, opposed to the power-hungry notebooks, tablets and smartphones. They're mostly single-taskers, to borrow an Alton Brown term, but they can grow up and out the same way the digital media player is. The list is well-worth reading, though.

So, our car is in the shop, and the insurance company has us in a rental. It's a swank piece of motor art, with gratis satellite radio. We're not too used to it, but we're getting there. The Old Radio has been dead to me for quite some time, as it struck me that there wasn't anything I wasn't sick of being sent to me over those airwaves. The little I hear on the XM/Sirius channels I get over DishTV has been interesting, but never interesting enough for me to even consider it for myself. I have a large enough MP3 collection that I could go some months without repeating a song. (That I do repeat songs has something to do with being a musician, with the limits of Rhythmbox's shuffle function, and with the limits of the SD card in my phone.) And, quite honestly, I don't spend enough time on the road to make it worthwhile.

But I'm beginning to wonder about my wife. She does spend great amounts of time on the road, and given her preference for talk radio, I'm thinking it might be good fit for her. Her stations come out of Chicago and are mostly static when she comes to pick me up. But then, I'm wondering if streaming it with 3G or 4G smartphones would be a better solution.

What are your thoughts about dying technologies and/or the New Radio?