I can’t believe that we have just started a new decade! I can clearly remember that foolish transition from the 20th century to the 21st and how everyone thought the worst would happen! Thankfully nothing incredibly horrible occurred at start of the new millennium but I have to say that since then, we have undergone so much technological change.
Looking back at these ten years I've had the luxury of easily transitioning into two of the most influential advances...
First of all, the most obvious is the use of computers. I was in grade school during the nineties decade; therefore computers were just beginning to emerge in public schools. I remember the weekly trip to the computer lab was always something to look forward to. It was so exciting to sit in front of a yellowish/white Macintosh with a gigantic tube monitor and a small screen! But at the start of the new century I was half way into my first year of high school and although computers were still fairly big in size, the use of the World Wide Web was now in effect. Although Macintosh computers were still being installed in our public schools, the use of PCs (personal computer with a microprocessor) became more common for student use. Now the internet has become a tremendous part of our everyday life, so tremendous that if the internet signal is down in our Latinitas office, nothing productive gets done! Also, Macintosh has shortened its name to Mac/Apple and has created computers of all sizes including this amazing little device called the IPod. Although the PC continues to be in competition with the Mac, they both have almost the same functions therefore as far as preference; I think it highly depends on the user and the type of work being performed.
The other obvious advancement is the use of cell phones. As far as I can remember actual mobile phones (not two-way radios) were being used in the late eighties-early nineties, but certainly a high-tech portable device such as this was expensive that mostly the elite had access to them. As the nineties progressed just a few cell phone companies began to emerge but still the rates were extremely high. The use of pagers also became popular during this time and with this gadget I remember the only thing you had to pay for was the actual paging device and then the 25 cent phone call you made from a pay phone every time someone paged you. I remember my parents getting me a pager for Christmas one year (which I imagine was not too expensive because my parents belonging to the working class, were able to afford it) and I was so grateful to have it that I kept in mint condition! But by the turn of the new century my pager was not so cool anymore because cell phones were not just for the rich anymore, more and more people from the working class began to own cell phones too. I didn’t get my own cell phone until I was able to pay for it myself (which was my sophomore year in high school, 2001) and by then there were already about 4 different cell phone companies who offered fairly affordable rates (I don’t exactly remember how affordable, but it must have been since I managed to pay my cell phone bill and still cover other teen expenses by working at a fast food restaurant part-time). Now almost everyone has a cell phone and there are close to ten different cell phones companies who offer affordable, competitive rates. Also more and more different high-tech/multi-use cell phones are being created and with the use of text messaging, internet browsing, music playing, etc. many people find it impossible to successfully go about their day without their cell phone.
Clearly there have been numerous of other awesome technological advances in the past ten years, for example satellite TV, Blu Ray players, DVR recorders, GPS systems, etc. But I think that no matter what generation you come from, computers and cell phones have become two of the most commonly used devices now and I am excited to see what the next ten years will bring for us; I am curious to find out what other mechanisms we will have to rely on to function effectively.