The first cellphone, Motorola DynaTAC 8000X, debuted over 30 years ago. The first game system, Brown Box, delighted people with 6 simple games 48 years ago. And the very first personal computer, Simon, hit the market approximately 65 years ago. While these pioneer technologies were rudimentary at best, all of these inventions catapulted our world into the Information Age. Considering the iPhone you may be reading this article on originated from a device that only had a 30 minute battery life and took over 10 hours for a full charge, it’s easy to see that we have made leaps and bounds in intellectual growth. But while old ubiquitous technology falls by the wayside, do you find yourself feeling nostalgic for the electronics of yesteryear? If so, pay homage to the technology of the past by taking a look at these new digital devices intentionally made to look old-school analog!
1984 Apple iPhone
Many people don’t know that the Apple iPhone was actually dreamt up by a computer developer back in 1983. Nothing ever became of that conceptualization, but Bangkok-based artist Pierre Cerveau decided to come up with a play on the the original concept. The Macintosh phone, based on the 1984 Macintosh 128K computer, shares the same beige plastic case and colorful Apple logo.
Victorian Era Desktop Computer
If you’re unfamiliar with the steampunk aesthetic, it combines 1800’s victorian and wild west designs with a sci-fi twist. This computer, retrofitted from top to bottom with turn-of-the-century brass gears, cogs and levers, is made to look like it runs on industrial steam-powered machinery. Believe it or not, this PC was once listed on eBay with a starting bid of 14 thousand dollars.
1901 Twitter Typewriter
Doug Aitken’s project, Station to Station, in conjunction with Levis’ Make Our Mark campaign involved taking outdated technology and repurposing them for modern uses. The 1901 Underwood Typewriter No. 5 was revamped to be able to connect to Twitter and feature a character counter made from Nixie tubes. Other items included in this project was a 1939 Graflex camera that linked to Instagram and a 1956 Gibson guitar that could upload to SoundCloud.
What piece of old technology are you most nostalgic for? Would you trade your current tech items for these reincarnations?