Tuesday, August 5, 2008

The Tech Guy Speaks

What did I do before it came along? I thought I'd never be interested in one. But, I'm one of the millions now that have one. The Ipod. I was joking with Rosemary the other day about how technology sure has come a long way. She said, "Randy, I remember the day when I thought the transistor radio was the coolest gadget around!" I couldn't help but agree. When I was a boy I remember getting my first portable reel-to-reel player. Now this was even before cassette tapes! I remember Mom took me into the local five-and-dime store to get one. As a note, how many remember what a five-and-dime is? I'm sure a few of you do. I was so excited to get that player that could actually record a person's voice!

Then, cassette tapes came along. It was in those early days when they had the under the dash mounting brackets to house the unit for the car. Boy, is that going back in time! 33 1/3 records were the norm as well. Even before that, remember 8 track tapes? The thing that annoyed me with that format was simple: A song would fade out in the middle of the tune, the 8 track would change to the next track, then the song would fade in and continue. Just when a person was getting into the tune, it faded out! Then when I got my first VCR in 1984 I was psyched. I went with the Beta format. Which to this day I feel was a far better format than VHS. But, marketing has a way of changing the buying habits of consumers.

The venture of CD technology hit in the mid eighties if I remember correctly. I didn't get my first home CD player until 1989. It was a cheapie unit that Bill, a co-worker at the radio station, talked me into purchasing. But, it sounded great to me. Along comes 1998 and I buy my first DVD player. It cost a bundle. Even at the enormous price the first one I had wouldn't even play a dvd-r or dvd-rw.

MP3's came along and with it the hoopla and controversy over Napster. I could go on about mp3s not being as good as standard wave. Which, in essense mp3s are about a tenth in size as a standard wave file, depending on the bit rate you use. But, I'll spare you the drama.

Which, leads me to my final but original point. I didn't think I'd ever want an Ipod. But, I had tried cheapie mp3 players that ran on triple-A batteries, the screens were small and they didn't hold the amount of music the Ipod would. That is, unless you inserted a micro-SD card with extra available memory. Ever since I was a boy I've been enthralled with technological gadgets. And...I wonder...where does it go from here? I noticed that stores are carrying less and less CDs. Online stores offer purchases of mp3 albums for one low cost. New car players will play the mp3 format as well. Also, with the advent of Sirius satellite broadcasting I see landbased radio going out the window. I've had to do some serious thinking about whether returning to radio as a career again is viable. Even though I was in broadcasting, I grew weary of long-winded deejays. I used to get annoyed at a consultant who said that announcers needed to keep their "bits" short. I now understand it. However, if the announcer had something that was good and could keep an audience's attention, then go for it!

Well, I hope to get back to some serious writing. My longtime friend Cindy said that I wrote some good inspirational stuff. That was sometime back when I was! The summer has been busy and I've been sparse in my writing. There's a lot that I want to write about. The upcoming election, the denegration of true Biblical teaching and more topics. Hopefully I'll get to it soon. But for now, time to grab the Ipod and listen to some tunes. Till soon, may the peace of Christ be with you all!


  1. I have a cheapie mp3 player until Miss Sniz allows me to purchase the big iPod that I want. I'm continually amazed at what technology brings us and yet I know how easy it is to get lost in it all. Sometimes, we need to sit still and that's getting harder and harder to do.

  2. Roger,

    You said it well. I love technology but "things" can really distract us, that's for sure.

    Thanks for writing,