Is New Tech Better Than Olde Tech?

(Image credit: Apartment Therapy)

Everyone gets excited by the new toys when they come out and lord knows we are as guilty as any when it comes to tech cravings but is newer always better?

The answer is yes. End of article. Thank you for reading.

Ok, maybe there are some exceptions… and maybe the exceptions are more the rule.

Did you know that the Ford Model T got 22 miles per gallon back in 1908? Did you know that 22 miles per gallon is the average consumption for cars in 2009? Progess?

Everyone went gaga over the iPhone 4 but if you switched the chronology of the designs for the 3GS and the 4G so that the 3GS were the newest design, you might be just as excited. It’s much more ergonomic, sleeker, gets what appears to be the same reception as 4g for most customers and doesn’t have an external antenna that gets shorted by contact with the human hand. Sure, it doesn’t have the wifi-only Facetime and double dooby-do cameras, but all of this tech is designed for a network that will exist in a few years when your phone is obsolete or broken.

Is classic design really to be left to antiques dealers or are we technically proficient enough to resurrect and keep using old tyme products indefintely? Change is the driving factor for Design, not improvement. Need more examples?

How about TV? For years we heard about how Plasma and LCD was such a huge improvement over CRT screens. This is sort of true in HD but for most lower rez content a CRT is STILL better. Harder on the eyes, certainly, but tubes recreate a softer, more viewable picture. Pixelation is something we have learned to live with because we like thinner, smaller footprint electronics, but it is a suspension of disbelief.

Analog vs. Digital audio. Oh boy, what a great topic… it comes up from time to time around here and often leaves people panting and frothing over pros and cons and whether we can tell the difference but honestly, can you really complain about the sound of a record? You can’t put it in a portable device and ruin your hearing everywhere you go, but if you are willing to sit still for a while and just listen, vinyl can’t be beat.

Even farming suffers from problems of efficiency vs. quality. When was the last time you had a truly great pear? Was it produced organically or what we call “conventionally”, if you can believe the term usage?

Unplggd is a place where we celebrate the integration of tech and our lives but there is no defined formula for how that should be done. How have you balanced it in your lives? Any stand out stories of how your 80’s boombox is still booming or your Razr flip phone is alive and kicking?