Friday, August 12, 2011
One of the engineers who designed the original IBM PC has declared that it is the end of the era for the personal computer. If he is right, this revolutionary machine had a run of just 30 years, far less time than the typewriter. Whether or not he is correct, it is good to recall how technology has changed communications in three decades. Actually, it is hard to remember how one operated then with electric typewriters, reproduction shops for press kits and press releases, typesetting shops, etc. -- all functions that have been taken over by the PC and laser printer. The cumbersome work of PR has been eliminated and one practitioner can do the work of three or four. It is hard to get nostalgic about the past. It wasn't productive, and it wasn't as precise as PR is now. We lived by media directories then that were always out of date. Preparing press lists was a chore because one had to find out if the listed reporter was still at the publication. That is not the case now. It is not yet time to write the obituary for the PC but we should thank the engineers who built it for the wonderful invention that it is.