Engineering, Futurology

10 Things Modern Technology Has Replaced


Arthur C. Clark once said, “Any sufficiently advanced technology is equivalent to magic”. Modern technology has really taken off, replacing many everyday tasks and jobs. It has essentially become a magical tool for the human race. Robotic vacuums and hands-free devices were once just myths and dreams, but with research and development, they have become a common tool in many households today. There are thousands of innovative technologies that have replaced many mundane tasks, but a few really stand out. Here are 10 of the most impactful things that modern day technology has replaced.

1. Polaroid Cameras


While Polaroid cameras were a major improvement on the large, bulky cameras that were used 200 years ago, developers continued to make improvements to provide the best pictures possible. Now we have high definition cameras that auto focus and don’t have to “develop” by shaking the picture after you take it. You can edit your pictures from the convenience of your phone. Instagram is one of the leading technologies to have replaced Polaroid cameras.

2. The Typewriter


Still used by many banks and hipsters, the typewriter made typing and editing papers rather difficult. In those days, however, it was a writer’s dream. The typewriter came out in 1714, and has evolved to sleek and smooth keyboards that transfer immediately onto a TFD-LCD screen (the computer) and allows for instant editing, spell check, and more.

3. Nintendo


One of the first gaming systems created, the Nintendo is the hallmark of old school games such as Mario, Duckhunt, and Pinball. Nintendo, as well as other gaming companies, have really upped their game. You can now play online with people all around the world or use the Nintendo Wii to capture your movements and have a more virtual experience.

4. The VHS Cassette

vhs cassette

Having to rewind the tape after each show, or blowing the dust off of it to make sure that it worked properly, were some of the frustrating characteristics of the VHS which was first developed in 1977. The DVD effectively replaced the VHS, its only downfall being the potential for scratches. However, you no longer had to wait to rewind it and had various movie scenes available at the click of a button.

While DVDs are still very popular, various apps and streaming services, such as Netflix, have started to overtake these as well.

5. Landline Telephones

landline phone

Younger generations may never have to experience the frustration of being tethered to a wall to have to talk on the phone, or your mother listening in on your conversations from the phone in the other room. Landline telephones were patented in 1875 by Alexander Grahm Bell and were replaced over time by cordless telephones. Always moving forward, the cell phone was introduced and is now one of the most common items that Americans possess.

6. Dial Up Internet

Dial Up Internet

If being tethered to the wall to talk on the phone wasn’t irritating enough, at one point you could not talk and surf the web at the same time. Dial up internet was brought to us in 1981, and in 1989, we rejoiced in having the world wide web at our fingertips. Developers didn’t stop there, however, and we now have the convenience of high-speed internet and WiFi.

7. Gas Powered Cars

gas car

While these aren’t the primary cars driven by most Americans, the fact that they are even an option is quite miraculous. With the average car getting around 23.6 miles per gallon, the average electric car gets 50-55 miles per gallon. The overall savings for switching to an electric car is approximately $1,595 per year!

8. Buttons on Electronics

Buttons on Electronics

There have been quite a few ups and downs to replacing the button with the touchscreen. While we no longer have to worry about destroying an entire electronic device by breaking an individual button, we do have to worry about breaking our touchscreens. Luckily, there have been many improvements to the cell phone and tablet case to help prevent this. Touchscreens have overtaken the old school buttons for a smoother typing and texting experience.

9. Telegrams

Telegram machine

The telegram was invented by Benjamin Franklin way back in 1750, a pretty miraculous invention for that day and age. Nowadays we have email. What used to take 40 days for a message to travel from America to India can now be done at lightning speed with the click of a button.

10. Maps

road atlas

Plenty of parents still actively teach their kids to read a map, it’s a great adventure and survival skill to have. In the modern age, however, it is no longer a necessity. We now have GPS, which not only gives us a map but verbally tells us how to get to our destination. Some GPS systems even tell you the time of your arrival, calculate the fastest trips possible, allow you to add in pit stops along the way, and even tell you if you should be expecting traffic! They used to come as an attachment for your car, but many cars now have built in GPS systems and nearly all phones have them as well.

We have made quite the improvement on old technology. Efficiency, speed, and multitasking are now at the forefront of developers minds, and almost nothing surprises us anymore. Those who grew up before internet or cell phones can really appreciate the modern inventions we have now, while younger individuals can look forward to all of the new technology that is currently being invented.

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