The Top 100 PC Tech Innovations of All Time

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Cleverboy, Dec 3, 2007.

  1. Cleverboy macrumors 65816

    Cleverboy

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    #1
    http://www.maximumpc.com/article/the_100_greatest_tech_innovations_of_all_time?page=0,9

    So, from the list above, I've bolded all the items I think have particularly strong ties to the Macintosh community, and italicized all the mentions of Windows. Not saying anything, just thought it'd be interesting to highlight them. I'd note all the reasons for the bold (mostly trivia... remember Apple's whole $5 DVD push and the "Bug's Life" precedent? Or, CDs and the introduction of hydrid discs), but I'm a bit tired, and for the most part they're a bit obvious.

    Here are some of my gripes though...

    For software... Myst... hello? I'd also bring up Living Books from Broderbund. Like it or not, that really started selling the multimedia PC. One of the very first commercial multimedia titles was actually from a company I worked for. It was called Composer Quest. Back then, we used Director on the Mac, and got animation over to Windows 3.1 using a program called the gaffer.

    On the Mac-side, yeah... Apple was the FIRST computer manufacturer to drop disk drives, and feature a built-in CD drive for all their computers. That was the charm of the original iMac... although at the time I found it extremely scarey, and most people were scrambling for USB floppy drives even though they really didn't need them. I'd also object to Ubuntu being mentioned before Mac OS X. Why? Well, if there was a consumer friendly Unix-based system to celebrate, it was the synthesis of Mac OS X form the dregs of NextStep, and helping Apple become the viable surging force it is today. Up until Mac OS X, Apple was treading water. It wasn't until Panther that I realized that much of the Unix experience I was gaining from shared/dedicated hosting environments directly applied to the new OS X, and more importantly, functioned even better than the previous Mac OS 9.

    Also, they're very remiss in not mentioning the Video Toaster or the Amiga. As an ex-Amiga-head (who is Bit Torrenting roms for UAE on my Mac at this very moment), Video Toaster from NuTek was a HUGE break-through. It was quite possibly the Amiga's last hoorah. It was such a break through in allowing production quality titling and 3-D modelling and compositing with its Lightwave 3D, that people literally built systems that effectively built Amigas INTO PC compatibles, simply to use the VIdeo Toaster functionality. Lightwave spawned some of the first television budget 3-D effects in shows like Babylon 5.

    Those are some big ones. They could have done with missing at least one of versions of Windows. Seriously. I'd pick XP personally.

    ~ CB
     
  2. squeeks macrumors 68040

    squeeks

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    #2
    i know the athlon 64 is on there, but i cant believe the first gen Athlon isnt, thats really the first chip that gave intel a run for its money, competition is great for technology forces other companies to innovate
     
  3. lofight macrumors 68000

    lofight

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    #3
    with usb first i agree, but alot of the rest of the list i strongly disagree..
     
  4. Rhosfelt macrumors 65816

    Rhosfelt

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    #4
    I don't see a single apple OS on there... which to me is a stab in the face..
     
  5. Shadow macrumors 68000

    Shadow

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  6. Rapmastac1 macrumors 65816

    Rapmastac1

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    #6
    And yet we see Windows 95:eek:
     
  7. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

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    #7
    really isn't all that great of a list. quake higher than doom? quake wouldn't exist without doom. :confused: firewire? didn't see it. wireless being so far back? and other missing stuff. just doesn't make sense that some of these things are even included.
     
  8. Rhosfelt macrumors 65816

    Rhosfelt

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    #8
    I just realized that crtl-alt-delete is on there...hahaha b/c windows users need that so often it should be much higher.
     
  9. squeeks macrumors 68040

    squeeks

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    #9
  10. Stampyhead macrumors 68020

    Stampyhead

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    #10
    The fact that AOL and Zip drives are on there makes the list null and void in my book. I can't even tell you how much data I lost back in the day due to zip disks getting corrupted all the time. Those things were the worst. And yes, I'll admit that AOL was the main company that introduced the world to the internet back in the 90's, but it doesn't change how much they sucked @$$, even when they were the only solution.
     
  11. Rhosfelt macrumors 65816

    Rhosfelt

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    #11
    Okay I realized another flaw... well ignore the fact that the iPod isn't on the list but what else is weird is that napster is and iTunes isn't? :confused:
     
  12. ErikCLDR macrumors 68000

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    #12
    I see that the MP3 is there but what about the iPod? I know that the iPod was not the first portable MP3 player but honestly I think the iPod has made a huge difference not only in the computer world, but in the economy, in apple's existence, and our everyday lives.

    Why does dell get 2 LCD monitors on the top 100 innovations?

    This list basically is someone's opinion so I don't really see why it needs to be discussed. We're all going to disagree with it.
     
  13. mpw Guest

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    #13
    er, electricity? the wheel? screws? the Fleshlight?
     
  14. SkyBell macrumors 604

    SkyBell

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    #14
    I can understand that on there ("revolutionary" new interface) But why the hell is Windows XP number 5?!:eek:

    Your answer:

     
  15. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

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    #15
    while the guy above point out the answer on the advances is on the PC where it really counts from the artical. As much as it pains me to say it they are right. Apple computers has to little of the market to make the changes. Things to do become changing until they hit the PC.

    As for napster being on there and iTunes not. I going to assume it is talking about the original napster that started digital music. If there was no napster Mp3 would not be a big thing. It is what started P2P. I started using napster back before it went to beta 2. When I log on I was lucky to see maybe a few hundred users. I used it up until the day it was pretty much shut down.
     
  16. squeeks macrumors 68040

    squeeks

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    #16
    because windows XP just might go down as the most popular operating system of all time

    whats it been out, 6-7 years now? very little modification/updates and its still the most widely used

    OSX may/will outlast it, but there have been quite a few modifications to OSX over the years its a very different operating system than when it was first released, almost the difference between XP and 2000, seeing as how XP is based on the 2k kernel
     
  17. Cleverboy thread starter macrumors 65816

    Cleverboy

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    #17
    I'm sorry, but you're sipping the kool-aid BIG time. The #1 reason "XP" could go down as "the most popular OS of all time" (shudder) has next to NOTHING to due with its own merits. It has to do more with OEM deals and OS entrenchment. There are legions of IT people that know and are certified for nothing BUT Windows... so whether Windows XP had new features, more advanced options, or simply existed as a Windows 2000 service pack, it wouldn't have mattered. The numbers would have looked more or less the same. --Unfortunately, right? Vista is by far, NOT very popular. Why? Has lots of "advancement", "new features", and glimmer... but, oh, yeah... incompatibility issues and headaches with IT needing to learn and teach something new (sound familiar?) Yet, even Vista is gaining marketshare mostly by new computers being sold.

    No one should go around claiming Windows XP is "the most popular OS of all time", as if this is comparable to saying X is the "most popular rockstar / electronics device / food". These would all be merit. For goodness sakes, wasn't there a whole lawsuit thingie brought up against M$ for anti-competitive practices involving Windows? I remember back when DR DOS was gaining ground, and Microsoft started blowing smoke and implying the software was unreliable.

    You want to talk about a success story? Try Apple's meteroric comeback. Honestly, I'd TOTALLY left the platform for a while. Machines sitting around the apartment begging to be switched on. Now, with its singularly remarkeable transition to a Unix compliant foundation and Intel-based paradigm, Apple has accomplished something unmatched in the history of computing. They've consumerized Unix, and embraced the Open Source movement more than anyone would have dreamed possible in those Copland days of decay and corporate entropy. I was almost certain Apple would be the next Commodore. Didn't happen.

    Honestly, the iPod SHOULD be on there before an "XP". It was the first mp3 player to truly... seamlessly integrate the sideloading experience of acquiring purchased and owned content in a cohesive platform (why Apple continues to advertise iPod + iTunes today). I agree that aside from the first OSX, Mac OS doesn't really deserve to be on the list... but Windows hardly deserves all that attention, and I'm sorry, but Ubuntu before OS X? No.

    ~ CB
     
  18. Stampyhead macrumors 68020

    Stampyhead

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    #18
    Cassie isn't a guy...
     
  19. mpw Guest

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    #19
    I think I agree with the squeeks, although I think 'populous' or 'common' would perhaps be a better word than 'popular'. I think what he was implying was that XP has a huge market share, and with growing competition from other OSs future markets are likely to be less dominated by MS Windows.
     
  20. chewietobbacca macrumors 6502

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    #20
    Whoa whoa, take off the Apple shades for a second.

    First, to address the last point, the iPod isn't mentioned because it has nothing to do with PC innovations which is what the article explicitly states. As in hardware and software and innovations that directly affect the personal computer. The iPod in itself is a media player - if this list were the most important innovations in media player history, then yes omitting the iPod would be a travesty as would omitting CD players, casette tapes, etc. But this isn't that list. Also, Napster is on there because it started the entire p2p craze, made mp3's a household word, and set off a flurry of controversy that has lasted to this very day about digital rights, copyrights, etc.

    Innovations need not be controversial to be important ;)

    Also, popular might not be the best word to describe Windows XP but it certainly is the most commonly used OS in the world and is certainly well liked enough that the majority of PC users still use it, despite Vista being out (which I use daily and prefer now, but XP never gets old). Enough that Mac users once they moved to x86 Intel were able to get BootCamp around just so they can dual boot up XP. The basic underpinnings of global business and economics today run on XP and the Windows 2K kernel (I admit though a better thing would have been Windows 2K/NT kernel rather than Windows XP itself) so its impact is more than just being an operating system. It doesn't hurt that the XP had a lot of influential features as well, and had the perfect combination of being non-restrictive to users as well as being as stable as Windows has ever been. If you understand how complex computer hardware is, much less integrating it, you'd agree its quite a feat to have any OS support the nearly infinite number of possible hardware configurations it can.

    I am somewhat annoyed they mentioned Nvidia SLi when 3dFX pioneered it first, way back in the day, but at least they gave the shout out to the 3dFX Voodoo 1, which brings back old days to the days of Rage vs. Voodoo vs. TNT2 etc.

    Also, as for why Windows 95 was revolutionary, despite all the crap associated with it and its instability, was that it did bring a revolution to how user interface and operating system interfaces are done to this day. Damn, has a decade really passed already?

    I'm glad they had the shout out to the AMD Athlon 64 / K8 because it knocked Intel down a notch. Down enough that they came back with the vengeance to place them where they are today, again a competitive company.

    And I do admit that technically since PC's and Macs were once considered separate in a lot of ways, a lot of Mac innovations were left off that should be included in a list of general computer innovations though.
     
  21. Cleverboy thread starter macrumors 65816

    Cleverboy

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    #21
    No Apple shades here, bud. My first post brought up a lot more than just "Apple" stuff missing, so... you've lost a point.

    STOP. Ask yourself to make a specific "rule" and then apply that rule to all the other devices on the list and see if your rule doesn't knock any of those off as well. You do realize that zip drives and printers made the list, right? I think you're not being fair.

    I'd give you your point if iPods did not require themselves to be attached to PCs for content, but that's a HUGE aspect of how iPods work. Right? If you just had an iPod and no cord, you wouldn't really have a useful device would you? "Side-loading" as a concept is something Nokia agrees that Apple has mastered (as the secret sauce of media player grooviness), and that they are looking to emulate more in the future. Really, a couple items on the list could *easily* be replaced with an iPod. I'd even vote the Zip Drive itself off. As a PC innovation, the iPod is the first mass market side-loading media device to really take-off. Up until that point, PMP's were mostly for geeks, and required you to bend over backwards. Honestly... when it first arrived, I was in the middle of hooking up a new Sony Mini-Disc player, because it was small enough to fit in my pocket, and had flexible storage. I'd JUST purchased it, and was thoroughly dissappointed by the way I had to name all the songs by directly pushing buttons on the device and making markers. After grabbing the iPod, the labor-ridden process I'd been working on all that night, I arrived home, and completed in minutes. MINUTES! --On a device that fit in my pocket. PC users almost immediately started hacking out solutions for getting the iPod on Windows, and history was made.

    Out of the three innovations Jobs pointed to when the device launched in 2001, the last had a LOT to do with its success: #1.) Ease of use (clock wheeel), #2.) ultra-portability (it was THE smallest because that profile of drive had just been released) and #3.) its ability to sync automatically with your computer (iTunes). Not JUST a hard drive model (mass storage), not JUST a portable hard drive, not JUST an Mp3 player... people were MIX, RIP, and LOADing in minutes of it getting home.

    ~ CB
     
  22. PowerFullMac macrumors 601

    PowerFullMac

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    #22
    I have noticed Vista is not on there, no surprises there, Vista is 0% innovation.

    I do think some Apple stuff should be put on there, and not just Red Hat Linux, but Linux and the concept of open source, the Open Source Foundation etc. should be put on too.
     
  23. lofight macrumors 68000

    lofight

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    #23
    well, do you see leopard on there?? :(
     
  24. r1ch4rd macrumors 6502a

    r1ch4rd

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    #24
    Where is the transistor? Where is virtual memory? The internet isn't even on there! Surely one of those was more important than Solitaire!

    Ctrl-Alt-Delete? One of the best innovations of all time??!!

    This list is just ridiculous. I don't think I agree with a single one of them.
     
  25. PowerFullMac macrumors 601

    PowerFullMac

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    #25
    No, hence the other half my previous post...
     

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