The Quirky Side of Tech: Fun Facts About Technology
Over the past few decades, technology has come a long way, and we’ve seen advancements that used to be science fiction become reality. Here are some fun and interesting facts about technology that you might not have known:
1. The first-ever computer mouse was made of wood.
The computer mouse we know and love today was first invented in 1964 by a man named Douglas Engelbart. However, the first mouse turned out to be made of wood! Engelbart’s original prototype was a block of wood with a knob on top and two wheels on the bottom. Only later did the design improve and become more practical.
2. The first-ever website is still online.
The World Wide Web was invented by Tim Berners-Lee in 1989, and the first website went live in 1991. Amazingly, that original website is still online today! You can visit it at “info.cern.ch/hypertext/WWW/TheProject.html” to see what the Internet was like in its infancy.
3. The first camera phone was created in 1997.
Almost everyone has a camera on their phone these days, but not always. The first camera phone was invented in 1997 by Philippe Kahn, who hacked the digital camera and cell phone to send pictures of his newborn daughter to friends and family. The images were black and white and low resolution, but it was a technological breakthrough moment.
4. The first-ever computer virus was created in 1986.
Computer viruses have been a problem since the days of the Internet, but the first virus was created in 1986 by two Pakistani brothers, Basit and Amjad Farooq Alvi. Spread by floppy disks, the virus, known as Brain, was relatively harmless, but it started a trend that continues to this day.
5. The first-ever text message was sent in 1992.
Text messaging is essential to today’s modern communications, but its origins are obscure. In 1992, British software engineer Neil Papworth sent the first text message. He sent a “Merry Christmas” message from his computer to a friend’s phone, which at the time didn’t have a keypad.
6. The first-ever computer game was created in 1962.
Since the invention of computer games in 1962, they have come a long way, but the first was a simple tic-tac-toe game created by Martin Graetz. In 1964, the Massachusetts Institute of Technology played this game on a mainframe computer, and the gaming industry as we know it today was born.
7. The first-ever video on YouTube was uploaded in 2005.
Although YouTube has become one of the most popular websites on the internet, it had to start somewhere. In 2005, Jawed Karim uploaded the first video to the site called “Me at the zoo.” The video is only 18 seconds long and shows Karim standing in front of some elephants at the San Diego Zoo.
8. The first emoji was created in Japan in 1999.
The first emoji was created by Shigetaka Kurita in Japan in 1999, and have become an essential part of modern communication. Emojis were originally designed to help people communicate more effectively on small mobile phones, and they consisted of just 176 characters.
9. The first-ever hard drive was only 5 MB.
Hard drives have come a long way since their inception, but the very first one was invented in 1956 by IBM. It was the size of a refrigerator and could store just 5 MB of data, which is less than a single MP3 file today. Nowadays, hard drives can store terabytes of data in a device that fits in the palm of your hand.
10. The first-ever touchscreen phone was the IBM Simon.
Touchscreen phones are now ubiquitous, but the very first one was the IBM Simon, which was released in 1993. The phone had a touch-sensitive screen, but it was bulky and expensive, and it didn’t catch on with consumers. It wasn’t until the release of the iPhone in 2007 that touchscreen phones became mainstream.
11. The first-ever computer password was “12345”.
Computer security is more important than ever, but the first-ever computer password was shockingly simple. It was “12345,” and it was used to protect an account on the Compatible Time-Sharing System (CTSS) at MIT in the early 1960s. Nowadays, most websites require much more complex passwords to protect user data.
12. The first-ever email was sent in 1971.
Email has become a fundamental part of modern communication, but the first ever email was sent over 50 years ago. It was sent by Ray Tomlinson, who worked on the ARPANET project, and it was sent between two computers that were sitting next to each other. The message said “QWERTYUIOP,” the first letters on the keyboard.
13. The first-ever 3D-printed object was a tiny cup.
3D printing is an exciting new technology that has the potential to revolutionize manufacturing, but the very first object ever 3D printed was a small cup. It was printed in 1983 by Chuck Hull, who invented the process of stereolithography. Nowadays, 3D printing can be used to create everything from prosthetic limbs to cars.
Technology is constantly evolving and changing, and these fun facts show just how far we’ve come in a relatively short period of time. Who knows what amazing advancements we’ll see in the future?
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