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It's over 20 years since I first went online...

(184 Posts)
HollowTalk Fri 18-Jan-19 21:01:49

I was just thinking how different life is now - then we still had five channels (just) and a dial up connection. We'd only just started using emails at work and mobile phones were huge and expensive to use. You got what was given as far as entertainment was concerned and you paid by cash or cheque for everything you bought.

What difference do you think another 20 or 30 years will make?

HollowTalk Fri 18-Jan-19 21:04:17

Has anyone got one of those smart fridges which makes a shopping list as you use up your food?

HollowTalk Fri 18-Jan-19 21:33:35

Oh no, a dead thread!!!

I thought everyone would have great ideas.

Hen2018 Fri 18-Jan-19 21:50:14

20 years ago you could pay with a card but you had to sign the receipt!

MawkishTwaddle Fri 18-Jan-19 21:55:06

The first thing I did online was buy baby clothes on Mini Boden.

My mum used to go mad because the internet used to engage the phone line all night.

XH typed PORN in block caps for his first foray online. Right in front of me, six months gone at the time.

The row we had. Tosser.

1Redacted1 Fri 18-Jan-19 21:59:21

The first thing I did online in 1995 was the Oasis chat room. grin I still remember the days of waiting ages for modems to connect and the internet costing the earth. Amazing how it's all become a part of everyday life. But also slightly scary.

HollowTalk Fri 18-Jan-19 22:02:21

20 years ago you could pay with a card but you had to sign the receipt!

I'd completely forgotten that! Swipe the card, then sign?

HollowTalk Fri 18-Jan-19 22:03:19

I know a lot of people pay with their phone now, but I'd be too scared of losing my phone and giving someone else the chance to buy things. If you do use your phone to pay, do you use a fingerprint password and have it set to 5 minutes?

HollowTalk Fri 18-Jan-19 22:04:14

I remember chat rooms - I used to love them. The idea of people all over the world talking to each other in real time was great.

myhamsteratefreddiestarr Fri 18-Jan-19 22:07:52

Dial up internet! I joined aol, then freeserve. Our first computer cost around £800, it would be about £300 now.

DD 11yo laughs when I talk about 5 tv channels and no internet, no film downloads, no online music, and always processing camera films. It all sounds so alien to her.

I used a visa swipe machine recently in a local garage when their computers went down grin. I’m surprised the banks still know how to process them!

ThePlatypusAlwaysTriumphs Fri 18-Jan-19 22:08:03

I can't believe how far things have come since I first "went online"! My dad built me a computer and I had freeserve dial up! E- mail was a revelation! have
Now we have wifi, broadband, 5 people in the house doing different things on the internet. When my dad first got me online (1997) he gave me a little book of all the websites!! Now it would be a tome!

doris9034 Fri 18-Jan-19 22:08:55

Remember the manual swipy machines for cards with the carbon slips!!!

myhamsteratefreddiestarr Fri 18-Jan-19 22:09:35

I used to love the chat rooms. It was the start of online dating for some! I did meet up with a lad who I met in a chat room, back in 2000. Didn’t come to anything though.

SomethingPhishy Fri 18-Jan-19 22:11:13

We went online here October 1999. I remember having to run a cable from the telephone point to the computer. It was my first time living away from home & when we were online, the phone line was engaged - my Mum used to moan about it. We were signed up with Freeserve & it was really slow loading pictures. How things have changed!

1Redacted1 Fri 18-Jan-19 22:13:07

I loved the chat rooms too. It felt amazing (at the time) to be able to talk to some random in Australia about day-to-day stuff. These days, people go out of their way to avoid talking to randoms on the internet!

HollowTalk Fri 18-Jan-19 22:14:31

The thing is, I can't imagine what it's going to be like in 30 years' time. I just don't have the imagination for that. I assume we'll pay for things with our fingerprint or iris.

When I was young we were told that in the future we'd have a tablet instead of food - I can't imagine that happening ever, can you?

And there will still need to be public transport. I assume all cars will be electric and there'll be charge points all over the place.

HelmutFrontbut Fri 18-Jan-19 22:14:37

Op I was freaked out last week by a guy using his ring to make a transaction! Next thing we'll all have chips under our skin??

Xiaoxiong Fri 18-Jan-19 22:15:06

First thing I remember was selecting "Dial" in the Terminal to dial up (and the the god awful noise), and typing in "finger" into the terminal to see who else was online. I also remember downloading Netscape Navigator in 1994, I was 11 - it was the first browser we ever had. Even as recently as 2001 I was still using pine, they introduced webmail at my university the following year I believe.

God I feel ancient!

noraclavicle Fri 18-Jan-19 22:17:47

I first went online in ‘97 I went to a conference where a guy from MIT told us we’d all be buying our shoes over the internet someday. How we scoffed in the audience! I don’t think I could predict what’ll happen in another 20 years - am totally rubbish at it grin

Xiaoxiong Fri 18-Jan-19 22:18:22

My parents told us we needed to build our own computer if we wanted to play computer games, it was really smart - we learned how to do it very quickly!! We built a desktop tower and first game we played was Myst I think.

HollowTalk Fri 18-Jan-19 22:19:15

Me too, noraclavicle! I'm really crap at predicting the future! I remember talking to students about video phones, many years ago. We all agreed they wouldn't catch on grin

HollowTalk Fri 18-Jan-19 22:20:22

@HelmutFrontbut I think this will happen, because anything else can be stolen. Eek, unless our fingers are chopped off!

MadisonAvenue Fri 18-Jan-19 22:23:12

It's just over 20 years since my husband walked in the house with a computer - "what are we going to use that for" I asked. A few days later he came in with a modem which left me scratching my head and wondering why we needed the internet, it all seemed pretty pointless.

Funnily enough I was talking to online friends just a few days ago about the fact that it's 20 years this year since we 'met' on a forum about Friends (the TV show).

chipsnmayo Fri 18-Jan-19 22:24:09

I first went online in the late 90s at my work, did not by a computer until about 2005 though too poor

Also I remember before FB there was Friends Reunited grin I use to access that at my work computer blush

PickAChew Fri 18-Jan-19 22:25:13

I don't think fingerprint technology will become completely pervasive. Some of us don't have readable fingerprints.

thenightsky Fri 18-Jan-19 22:26:27

Was anyone on I made friends on there back in the late 90s that I'm still friends with today.

Lovestonap Fri 18-Jan-19 22:30:35

Encarta! The wikepedia of its day!

howrudeforme Fri 18-Jan-19 22:30:39

Oh blimey - back then i had dial up with clarinet. They were good.

Then dh years later got me blackberry and my words were ‘meh - who on earth wants email and internet on their phone.’ Gawd!

HollowTalk Fri 18-Jan-19 22:37:11

I didn't know, but I met lots of friends in pretty dodgy places back then. Still friends now - all completely normal.

RippleEffects Fri 18-Jan-19 22:43:33

I think in 20 years time we won't have so many overlapping devices. Like phone, tablet, pc with common functionality. We'll have one device that does all.

I think tv's will be less common with people watching on personal devices but maybe homes will have projectors that link to devices or devices will project to allow group viewing.

The biggest change I forecast is with transport. I'm really excited by the possibilities of driverless cars. If you take the labour element out of short taxi rides and replace with a driverless car, it'd be cheaper for most people than to own a car. It'd be great for the young getting places safely yet independantly, old, unable to drive, disabled.

If you book your driverless route you could do it as a sole occupant or car share where you pay less but may pick up others going the same way. The traffic conjestion savings with an automatic journey system could be fantastic.

I wonder if we'll end up renting right to car use almost like a phone tariff system with x miles a month off peek, commuting only, in city zones or county or country wide. Premium payments for posher vehicles, faster availability, peek time availability, options to prebook and block book. No parking costs in cities as the car would take itself off to its next booking.

More than 20 years ahead but I feel fully feasible is brain wave control of devices. Homing in on our telepathic abilities. If we have even miniscule energy flows with our brain functions there must be a way of taking signals from this and using those signals for control.

thugmansion Fri 18-Jan-19 22:44:52

I remember when I first started texting friends in the 90s. DH was furious because every time I sent or received one the TV or anything electrical would make that da da da da da da da da da da interference noise. He was well pissed off I had friends and he didn't grin

pastabest Fri 18-Jan-19 22:55:16

I think health services are going to be where there will be significant change in the future aside from all the technological changes/ improvements that are inevitable.

We are already seeing online GP services becoming increasingly popular, I can see this becoming the primary way to speak to health professionals in the future for anything that doesn't physically require going into the surgery. This will include technology to take basic health measurements such as blood pressure, better ordering and management of prescriptions including home delivery rather than standing in a queue at Boots for 3 hours.

I also think paper will largely only be used for art and wiping bottoms with (although I suspect there may also be a future push for more sustainable bottom wiping methods too). Paper receipts and documents will be seen as wasteful.

Disposable nappies I think will have to dramatically change to be more environmentally friendly. I Think the disposable nappy companies are on borrowed time already (I say that with 2 children under 2 who are both in disposables and I feel immense guilt at every nappy change).

Hydroponics. In the future most of your veg and salad etc will be grown this way.

HollowTalk Fri 18-Jan-19 22:56:24

Driverless cars - not sure whether I'd want them to pick up just anyone, though - there's safety in having a driver (personal safety) and if you were on your own in a car and it stopped for someone dodgy, you wouldn't feel safe at all, would you?

I think it's driverless cars that I find the hardest to accept - just feeling you have no control whatsoever would be really tough.

RippleEffects Fri 18-Jan-19 23:09:40

For every problem there's a solution. As I see it a driverless car booking system could have filters for you to select.

An easy one would be a premium for sole use of vehicle.

Another would be manual control of car once driverless delivered - so more of a hire car than taxi.

The cost and conjestion at peek time savings would come from multiple occupancy so through filters when booking you could select female occupants only or no detours direct route only so any pickups would have to be on your known route. The more filters you select there would be a risk of less availability with the whole supply and demand business but that's life. You work out your priorities and cost/ benefit of the service you want. I like to travel first class on the train (thank you Virgin for you first class family to London saver fares, about the only time I've used first class) but the cost is much greater than the benefit for me vs other activities those same pounds could fund.

Notreallyhere2 Fri 18-Jan-19 23:14:26

Ah the excitement we had when encarta had a song file on the page of a band you liked (obviously nirvana)!

It’s just occurred to me that me and my friend once spent an afternoon sending texts to random numbers when she got her first mobile (she was richer than me and so we were quite early adopters of texts in our school) and I ended up really good friends with someone who responded- he wrote in his first snail mail letter to us that he turned 19 on 19/1/1999 so that would be 20 years ago now. Bloody hell time moves fast!

TrendyNorthLondonTeen Fri 18-Jan-19 23:37:25

We first got the internet in our house through the TV! This was before smart TVs, my parents had some super fancy Virgin package that let us browse websites and play basic flash games on some browser. We had a keyboard for it and everything!

It was shit.

Then my dad "borrowed" a laptop from his work and the telly internet was quickly ditched. I spent so much time on forums and Yahoo! groups. I met my first boyfriend via an internet forum!

JaiNotJay Fri 18-Jan-19 23:41:23

As a teenager, I used to go to the internet cafe (remember those?!) and email my uncle at his work because he was the only person I knew with an email address! grin

Blibbyblobby Fri 18-Jan-19 23:48:00

First online in 96, home connection with dialup in 97. We had a home network with a freecycled old 486 box sharing the connection!

Streaming stuff surprised me but I knew online shoppng would be huge. I think I did Christmas shopping in 1999 all online just to see if I could. And not only did I buy shoes online, I bought them from!

Ideas I had and parked then saw someone else make a fortune from: solid state music players so they wouldn't skip (I was sooo excited when mp3 players finally arrived! My first had a parallel port!). And about 98, when me and my geeky friends were all registering domain names and putting up a few personal web pages: "hey it would be really cool if when you weren't online people could leave messages for you on a kind of "wall" that everyone would see"...

Future stuff...
Driverless cars ... why would they look like 2+3 with a boot? I reckon you'd have one person pods, couple sofas (or beds!), maybe you could hire one with a treadmill...or a disco! Family sized ones with a table to sit round... you'd just dial up what you need for that journey. Your luggage could go with you, but could also get picked up by a separate luggage pod that takes a cheaper, unscenic freight route while your family pod takes a nicer route and stops for a picnic.

And commercial transport would change as well - the plumber (assuming she's not a robot - roomba with a soldering iron) could cycle over for the exercise while her tools make their own way over.

Less travel in general though, more telepresence stuff.

3D printing, especially if the plastic can be reusable. Single use plastics you print, use once then throw back in the printer ready to print the next thing.

AI agents to represent you interacting with AI agents of companies. So instead of spam and adverts, you train an AI that knows what things matter to you. It exposes interfaces that marketing bots can engage with and together they negotiate: is it something you'd want to know about, what deal is available to you? Then your agent says - "hey, I think this is up your street, any interest?"

ErrolTheDragon Fri 18-Jan-19 23:53:43

I started using email at work in about 1990 - I was working in a remote office in the US, dialled up about 3 times per day (remember the noise of the modem... a sort of screech then bing-bong, bing- bong, bing- bong). Then in 1995 I was back in the UK, working from home ... and had an ASDL line installed for work use. Early adopter...but I still haven't really learned to love a smartphone.

But I was playing Mornington Crescent online using uni computers in about 1984.grin

bruffin Fri 18-Jan-19 23:56:43

I got asked in a job application today , how long had i used excel. I put 30 years but not entirely true as i used Lotus123 first.
Im sure they wont believe me

Tony2 Sat 19-Jan-19 00:21:09

A very clever mate of the exes worked at London Uni computer place. Around 83 had quick tour, I think it was a Cray XMP1, liquid cooled, seats around it, possibly the fastest computer around. Stunning, as we were using pdp11 with typewriter type input. Some guy wrote book, Victorian Internet. In 1880 shorthand, text speak effectively was well established, you could live in a hovel in the middle of nowhere, save up your pennies, walk down a dirt track to the post office, and fairly quickly find out the price of gold on the nyse. Telegraphic romances developed, OLD, 1880. When chaperones were required, telegraphers would tap out more say intimate messages to each other on the table. Code for woman, YL, young lady; code for wife,XYL, ex young lady! I know, plus ca change tho eh?

AornisHades Sat 19-Jan-19 00:28:15

It's 30 years since I first used the Internet. It turns out that I am useless at picking tech trends.

Fstar Sat 19-Jan-19 00:37:14

Urgh dial up! I pay with my apple watch if under 30 quid and its such a pain to get my purse out if its over lol (pin protected). Remember first emails at work, didnt have a clue how to use them. Bought phone cards to call home when on hols but last time i was in usa i skype video called via free wifi

theoldtrout01876 Sat 19-Jan-19 00:38:48

My first internet search was "big mans pants" grin. trying to find trousers for my dad that my mum could afford, using my new fangeld internet. That was a shocker. I think it was 1998.
I used to go to a chat room called "Down the Pub" on yahoo, its where I met Dh in 1999.
I had 4 letter passwords and chatted to people all over the world, weirdos were easy to spot and avoid. The internet in those days was fun

Mumblers Sat 19-Jan-19 01:10:48

20 years ago going in an internet cafe and paying about £2.50 for 30 mins internet use.

Getting my first mobile at 22 & having to phone landlines because nobody else had a mobile phone & saying "Guess what! I'm phoning you from a mobile phone!" The SIM card was the size of a credit card which you put in a slot like a card reader. Don't think you could even text on it back then.

A few years ago I used to teach a History unit on 'changes in technology' to primary-aged children. I would take in my collection of old mobiles (i kept every single one) and got the kids to try & make a timeline of the phones' ages from oldest to most recent. Their reactions to the old phones (especially the Nokia 3310 & the interchangeable front covers!) was amazing. Some had never seen a vinyl record and most children could not tell me what a video tape was when I held it up and were very intrigued by cassette tapes. I'm only 44 but wow, it used to make me feel old!

Mumblers Sat 19-Jan-19 01:23:52

Just had to get them out lol

Adversecamber22 Sat 19-Jan-19 01:31:11

DH was online in 1989 as at Cambridge I was first online in 1994 so 25 years ago. I used to teach students how to use online resources and databases all very much in its infancy and I wrote some web pages.

WakeUpFromYourDreamAndScream Sat 19-Jan-19 02:03:01

I first went online in 2001 into the MSN chat rooms, met my now DH in one! Waiting for dial up was a nightmare and as it was through the one phone line it meant the phone line would be 'engaged' the whole time I was online! My parents used to go mad grin

If you wanted to know your bank balance you had to go to an actual cash point!

DinosApple Sat 19-Jan-19 06:12:24

When our internet goes down at work we still have a carbon paper swipey card thingy to use and I always get someone else to do it. I enjoy the novelty of someone waving their phone at the card machine, but that blew my mind the first time someone used it.

I can't remember my first online search at all, but it was 1997 when we got it at home. I used to use emode a lot at do the personality quizes as a teen and MSN to instant message my boyfriend who lived in another country (but we met in the UK).

My parents were giving me advice (that I didn't want to hear) about using the internet, and online stranger danger waaaay ahead of the game.

In twenty years I can still see myself having a phone and tablet. Probably not a PC though.

I still think we'll be using cash, but not as much. I don't think or rather hope that we won't become a cashless society.

QuaterMiss Sat 19-Jan-19 07:26:12

Well. That's just great. hmm

So first I remembered accompanying my then boyfriend to the Computing Dept in mid-80s Cambridge, and feeling bored while he 'emailed' someone at another university in the US.

That prompted me to wonder what another early adopter undergrad friend (with whom I'd lost contact) might be doing now. Looked him up ...

He's a prominent UKIP member.

Weekend ruined before I've even got out of bed.

Pinkyponkcustard Sat 19-Jan-19 09:16:10

Printing your own plastic is going to be huge I think and will have a big impact on the economies that make cheap plastic at the moment.

HollowTalk Sat 19-Jan-19 12:46:01

Some brilliant ideas here, especially about the driverless cars and the luggage and treadmills!

treedragon Sat 19-Jan-19 14:10:24

Anyone ever thought to turn their backs and go "off-line"??

brizzledrizzle Sat 19-Jan-19 14:39:32

I don't think I could go offline as I have to use it for work but I am not a big fan of social media; people post far too much personal stuff.

thenewaveragebear1983 Sat 19-Jan-19 15:07:16

The first time I went online was when my dad got a free trial cd rom from HMV and we all huddled round, then no one actually knew what to search for or how to search for anything! I was remarkably unimpressed

MrsPear Sat 19-Jan-19 15:49:45

Why DinosApple ? I look forward to no cash. Can’t remember the last time I used it tbh
As for internet it was 99 and university.

AppleKatie Sat 19-Jan-19 17:48:09

3D printing will be massive I think. If it can be made recyclable easy and cheap.

Eg, kid fancies a new lunchbox download a template for 1.99 and print one.
Need some ‘tuperware’ Print it.

I’m excited for driverless cars. I want my own private pod to read my book in/have a snooze instead of driving the commute.

Autumnchill Sat 19-Jan-19 17:59:00

My then husband borrowed his bosses computer for the weekend and we signed up to Freeserve. First thing I looked up was the Next website. We then looked for Virgin (flights) and panicked when porn came up 😳. My husband then looked for Under 16 Charlton boys (his football club), at that point we shut it down as we were worried he would get the sack!!! 😁

NopSlide Sat 19-Jan-19 18:00:15

24 years for me... I remember regularly reading EVERY result altavista gave me on a topic!

bumblingbovine49 Sat 19-Jan-19 18:38:45

I met DH online in 1999 when it was quite unusual and you were considered sad/ weird for resorting to on-line dating .

I printed out all of out email correspondence ( about 6 weeks of it before we met) to keep after we married. Glad I did now as we both have different email.accounts and I would have probably lost it all. It is like old fashioned letters would have been kept pre computers but both sides of the conversation!

April2020mom Sat 19-Jan-19 18:41:59

For one thing I hope there will be driverless cars. I remember using a old fashioned computer as a child. My children have never seen a old school computer yet.
Now we use Netflix.
My friends and I used to use search engines and chat rooms as a child under my mom’s watching eye whenever they visited. I was born in 1996. Times sure are vastly different now. Technology has come a really long way since the nineties that’s for sure. Facebook was not available when I was a little girl. I didn’t start using it to communicate until I was a teenager.

AnotherPidgey Sat 19-Jan-19 18:51:56

My school had an internet access computer in the library when I was in 6th form so about 97/ 98 ish. I wanted to send an email, but the only email address I knew was Terry Wogan's and he read it out the following morning grin
They also had a data projector which was incredible!

I remember images loading one line at a time!

I was the final year group to have typewriting lessons. The pain of jamming your fingers between the keys. One computer room had the older computers with just green screens. We had Excel, but word processing was on Write, no spell check.

ErrolTheDragon Sat 19-Jan-19 19:00:51

* I remember using a old fashioned computer as a child.*

If you were born in 1996 I doubt it!grin

When I was at primary school, the only brush with computers was that in one art and craft lesson we were given rolls of used punch tape, for creating skyscraper pictures (strips pasted vertically on a light background to look like buildings with some lit windows).

Secondary... nothing, but we did start to use calculators.

University... FORTRAN programming using punched cards, output on that big lined printer paper. Once I was a postgrad I could use terminals... 100 baud mostly, and then they upgraded to a system which allowed access to forums (such as Mornington Crescent).

Dominique1995 Sat 19-Jan-19 19:17:38

Message deleted by MNHQ. Here's a link to our Talk Guidelines.

brizzledrizzle Sat 19-Jan-19 19:20:07

Once I was a postgrad I could use terminals... 100 baud mostly, and then they upgraded to a system which allowed access to forums (such as Mornington Crescent).

and presumably you had to book time on a terminal as they only had a few?

kateandme Sat 19-Jan-19 19:33:37

robots.and I hate this because it reminds me of the film with will smith which I can actually think could happen with the shitty corrupt world we live in.
living in space.or hotels.
eye or thumb recognition locks.
more talking gadgets.
will it be common place for voice activated things by then.or voice controlled

SamWidges Sat 19-Jan-19 19:34:33

Housing for the kids. That's my concern. It was tough enough in the early 1990s when I was starting out. But

MarcieBluebell Sat 19-Jan-19 19:45:45

Home surveillance will be big. Keys will be replaced by codes/electronics.

kateandme Sat 19-Jan-19 19:47:25

that tennis game played on tv and then computer.with just the dot going back and forth between the two white lines you manoeuvred on the edges.
dial up tone.
sister using the phone all the time and cutting through the internet.
we used to send letters!we used to have to send letters!
at the beginning of computer chat rooms were huge.some very very bad.and couldn't be controlled then.or not properly anyway.
having to go out to buy stuff.was there really a time before online shopping

myhamsteratefreddiestarr Sat 19-Jan-19 19:49:53

I left primary in 1983 and we had an IBM ? Computer. I remember playing some puzzle game about how to get across a river with a chicken and a Fox.

In what seems a really backwards move, they dropped typing from the curriculum and I had to pay for evening classes when I was 16. Being RSA3 qualified helped no end when word processors came in!

I still use cash as I won’t use my card for small transactions as I know how much it costs the shops.

MarcieBluebell Sat 19-Jan-19 19:59:02

I really want a tech expert or scientist to tell us the future but that's obviously hush hush. Would love to know what's being planned.

FuzzyShadowChatter Sat 19-Jan-19 20:01:19

The first time I went on a computer at home was in the early '90s, my father brought it home for work. First thing I can remember doing sitting with my brother as he went into an AOL chat and pretended to be famous people for kicks (I think he pretended to be Spielberg). Pretty much none of the software I was taught at school (on Macs) has been around for years which kinda amuses me greatly as they all emphasised how important working with those was going to be for our futures...

My kids and I use cash all the time, I think it would awkward for the kids particularly to not have cash as they don't really have any other method at this point like I do, though I know the school my son's hoping to go to in September uses a fingerprint system. I can see changes to finances and transport as being more likely, but worry about who will end up getting left out. I think many of the changes could expand options, but could just as easy cut people off from them.

puppy23 Sat 19-Jan-19 20:12:31

I watched something the other month about people who genuinely are having chips injected into them which can unlock their cars etc - scary stuff!

helacells Sat 19-Jan-19 20:29:29

Everyone stills signs card receipts here (US)

Harryo Sat 19-Jan-19 20:55:48

I still use my original email address from 22 years ago smile

DangermousesSidekick Sat 19-Jan-19 20:57:45

Future tech development will probably deliver us a world rather like Iain M Banks' novels, he's looking right so far. The only problem is whether we will actually get there. Automation and all this voluntary work that we're expected to do needs a completely different approach to economies: basic resources like food, housing, clothing, will have to be freely and fairly distributed as automation takes over and there are no longer any real jobs left. Either that, or as Fuzzy says, millions are going to be left out - or less euphemistically, left to die.

NopSlide Sat 19-Jan-19 20:58:47

@Harryo as long as you don’t still use the same password.

dodi1978 Sat 19-Jan-19 21:29:06

That's a great thread!

First home computer - late 80s I think. Only thing we were able to do with it was play computer games from floppy disks. We had to lug my sister's small TV to the spare room and connect it to the terminal as no separate display.

Second home computer - 1995. No internet. I did my Abitur (A-levels) at the time and used it to do my coursework a lot.

My sister was already at uni at this point and was using e-mail / the internet. I was intrigued, but my parents' didn't see the point. When I went to uni in 1997 it was my time. I do remember going to the computer lab first time and asking the student assistant there "How do I get to the internet?" He showed me how to use a browser and how to write an e-mail. Terminals were massive and most of the computers broken at any time.

I would write my university coursework with pen and paper first and then go to a lab to type it up. Crazy. One of the libraries still worked with index card searches! A few weeks into starting my degree, I got an early e-card with flowers from the guy who became my boyfriend.

Two years later I got my first own PC and one an 'internet scholarship', which meant 10 hours (wow!) of free dial up internet with an advert popping up in a corner.

In 2000, I went to study in the USA and urged my parents to go online to keep in touch. They still couldn't see the point. However, once they had internet, they loved e-mailing me. My dad discovered Ebay. Biggest thing he ever bought there was a garden shed. Biggest thing I ever bought there cost about a tenner. Nowadays dad is an avid Whatsapper as he realizes that I am most likely to answer to a Whatsapp message - I live in the UK now.

I will launch my first online cause in the spring and dabble in research online teaching. I could never have imagined that 20 years ago!

MillenialMum89 Sat 19-Jan-19 21:40:37

Mums will be using hover prams!

Hassled Sat 19-Jan-19 21:41:08

When I was in Sixth Form the school got a computer and we all crowded into a small room to gawp at it. It was like we were looking at something from space - weird futurey shite that would never take off.

In the early 90s I worked for an IT consultancy - it was all DOS based stuff. At some point we switched to Windows and had special training on how to use a mouse. I remember at some point getting into trouble for using the internet when I hadn't booked it out and I was stopping someone else from using the internet.

darkriver19886 Sat 19-Jan-19 21:50:33

My first email address was from the forum. I can't remember the details now. I was 16 when I started using the internet 14 years ago.

NameChanger22 Sat 19-Jan-19 22:07:44

I worked for an internet company in 1999. I was paid to answer the phone twice a day and chat to people in chat rooms. I loved it.

In 1994 someone told me the internet was going to change the world. It has in some ways, but a lot things are still the same.

FairyLightBlanket45 Sat 19-Jan-19 22:08:51

Primary school in the 90s - began with one computer in the school.
Then progressed to an ICT suite - containing 3 computers. Each child got a turn once a term
Gradually became one computer per year group and in year 6 one per classroom
Interactive whiteboards appeared in year 9 in a handful of classrooms and were in most by the time I left (2006)
First mobile: Nokia 3210 with multiple covers!
Facebook - not till uni! So glad I didn’t have to deal with social media at school- msn could be hard enough

I reckon in 20 years? Cashless - definitely won’t be able to get away with not having a smart phone.
Possibly driverless cars
I reckon by then that there will be trips to space for “normal” people (the very rich anyway) the technology is already there - quick trip up to the atmosphere, quick look at the earth and back again
Laptops /computers I reckon will be pretty much gone and it will be tablets all the way.
Everything will be completely linked - house will be controlled by your tablet (which I know already exists but it will be everyone, not just the tech savvy)
Everything will be voice or finger print controlled - paying for things, opening your front door, starting the car etc

And the way that schools are going it wouldn’t surprise me if online school becomes the teacher far away and everyone signing in at home....

NameChanger22 Sat 19-Jan-19 22:09:45

In the future I think I think there will be a backlash against the internet and people will go back to the old ways again.

FairyLightBlanket45 Sat 19-Jan-19 22:10:35

Oh! I also reckon the high street shops will be almost all gone by then and it will ultimately be giant warehouses for every shop instead

puppy23 Sat 19-Jan-19 22:13:28

@FairyLightBlanket45 so many have shut down in my local town recently - another few and it'll just be phone shops and tescos left

RippleEffects Sat 19-Jan-19 22:17:43

Rather than the high street dissapearing, I wonder if product placement will become reality placement with the high street being product placement settings. Rather than branded shops. For example in a restaurant and like the plate/ glass/ cutlery you could scan it and have it delivered to your home. In a library browsing and download or have the paperback delivered, like the soundtrack and download it. At the doctors and like the art on the wall - buy it or download it. See it, scan it, buy it.

RippleEffects Sat 19-Jan-19 22:20:56

I need to add to see it, scan it, buy it that....waitresses/ receptionists/ bank clerks etc could be modeling latest clothes, jewellery, makeup. Typically young attractive and customer facing you could observe products in use and be soft sold.

Mother87 Sat 19-Jan-19 22:49:09

I still ask DC's "what's on TV tonight" and they all stare blankly at meconfused and sometimes have the grace to tell me that THEY'LL decide later when THEY feel like it

woofmachine Sat 19-Jan-19 23:38:53

Think the wealth gap will be wider, we will be controlled/influenced more by tech . All vehicles electric , no health service , insurance controlled by monitoring- health apps , dna scans checking life expectancy . still wont be flying cars, chips will allow us to consume info/entertainment/knowledge easier, no physical media being produced.

we will be living on the moon, or on enhanced space stations

woofmachine Sat 19-Jan-19 23:44:38

see it scan it buy it already exists in a basic form, mostly from celebs media, qr codes augmented reality, etc,

Also see porn, usually at forefront of tech, robot sex, consumer led, easier payment methods

MyDcAreMarvel Sat 19-Jan-19 23:59:24

I honestly can’t think of anything worse than driverless car share. I am disabled and need my own with its wheelchair hoist. Even if I didn’t I like my own vehicle.

fabulousathome Sun 20-Jan-19 00:13:19

My DS thinks that free driverless cars will pick you up and take you to one supermarket.

On the way an ad will tell you about special offers.

When you've finished your shopping you will call another free driverless car from the supermarket to take you and your shopping home.

madroid Sun 20-Jan-19 00:15:10

We had three BBC computers at school in 1979 because the maths teacher was a geek.

I remember my first mobile phone in early 80s which wouldn't fit in my handbag! It had an antenna and was bigger than a landline handset. It was very sci find because it had buttons instead of the dial used on landlines. I Felt like I was on star trek.
I remember being told at school that we'd all be working just one or two hours a day and hunger wouldn't exist because we'd all eat via little pills.

I think we were a lot more hopeful about the future then. Now I think the future will be shaped by climate change and the chasm between rich and poor will widen massively. Only the rich will afford proper food and water and air conditioned homes to escape the heat and also flooding.

Rich people will live even longer with personalised medicine but poor people will be exposed to more pollution and the consequences of extremes of weather.

I could also see the day when pregnancy and childbirth will be seen as barbaric and babies will be grown in incubators with custom dna choices like in brave New world.

ErrolTheDragon Sun 20-Jan-19 00:16:09

Brizzle - 'and presumably you had to book time on a terminal as they only had a few?'
No, because while there weren't many computer terminals in my department (chemistry) there were every fewer regular users of them.
I had to walk over to the other side of campus to get my printouts from the computer building.

A few years later at work we got a new Unix graphics workstation which was considered quite cheap at £43 K. I remember the price because it was about the same as my new build 3 bedroom detached house.

ErrolTheDragon Sun 20-Jan-19 00:20:27

The thing that makes me dubious about driverless cars is that although my car has automatic parking capability, I've never used it - I think this is quite common. More sensors and collision avoidance built in, absolutely- but I'm not convinced everyone will want to relinquish control.

ErrolTheDragon Sun 20-Jan-19 00:27:09

'every fewer ' ... 'even fewer'

Ok, one thing I really Hope happens, and soon, is more intelligent autocorrect... case in point I did not type 'Hope' with a capital letter, either time, my iPad has evidently decided it's most likely to be a proper noun. confused It seems to have got worse recently.

Greyhound22 Sun 20-Jan-19 00:33:23

Not really answering the question but funnily enough the song 'Jumping Jack Flash' came on the radio today and it always makes me think of Whoopi Goldburg in the film trying to work out what the lyrics are.

I thought 'well you would just Google it now!'

Massive leaps in such a short time.

I don't think tech will change at the same speed again. DH reckons we will all have driverless cars in the next 5 years 🙄 I'm still waiting for my hoverboard.

CoffeeTableBook Sun 20-Jan-19 00:42:21

@ErrolTheDragon Bet you have someone or something named Hope in your Contacts...

QuaterMiss Sun 20-Jan-19 01:03:17

We talk about robots as if they are 'the other'. But my worry is that with compulsory implants (and this will happen) we will all, essentially, eventually be somewhere on a spectrum of artificiality.

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