2009 will mark my 15th anniversary as a professional in the web industry. My first paid web project was in 1994, and if I remember correctly I think I made $50 for writing a credit card to email gateway in C++ for a woman that sold her own crafts online. No, it wasn’t credit card processing—it literally just did some very minor validation and then emailed the form contents to the woman for processing.
Yeah, it really was a much simpler time back then.
At any rate, I’ve found myself noticing more and more when the people around me are talking about technology. People in restaurants and movie theaters and supermarkets and what not. They’re talking about MP3 players and USB drives and blogs and online identities and cloud computing, etc.
I find it really, really weird.
See, for most of the last 15 of those years, I was the only person in any given room to even understand those conversations, much less find another person who also understood them. On the rare occasion that a like-minded individual would discuss such things in public with me, we would be looked at as if we had green skin or third eyes.
Not to put too fine a point on it, but technology scared the crap out of most people. Even in the Dot Com days.
But we truly have arrived in the Digital Age, haven’t we? The technology that only a small percentage knew about ten years ago is firmly entrenched and ubiquitous. It is now quite common to overhear conversations about USB drives and MP3s. The news is currently reporting about how our President-Elect is fighting to keep his BlackBerry.
I’ll get used to it, I swear. I just have 15 years of conditioning of “STFU NO ONE CARES” to overcome.