How much has changed in 20 years....
Isn't technology wonderful? I was reading in a magazine last week that it is 21 years since Sir Tim Berners-Lee first had the idea of the World Wide Web. When I started working at the BBC, we had manual typewriters. Then we were given electric typewriters and after that, electronic typewriters. Then came the computer, which completely changed our lives - a machine which could remember what you had written - fantastic. I can remember when we first got internet access in the department. The first person to use it was Hamish Norbrook
- he's the man who started the BBC Learning English site in April 1996. I sat in the office next door to Hamish and at lunchtime we were allowed to go in and "play" with this exciting new invention. The first time we used a search engine we were scared that we would break the computer in some way! How things have changed! Now, at the touch of a button, we can find out anything we could possibly want to know. We "visit" places we've only dreamed of. We can communicate with people on the other side of the world within seconds. We can share information and pictures with anyone and everyone. It was very exciting when, a couple of weeks ago, after my last blog, I had an email from Adriana with a picture of her "little angel": here he is:
Anyway, soon after Adriana's photo arrived, one of my colleagues sent me a story. It went something like this:
A self-important college student was walking along the beach, when he saw an old man resting on some steps.
He saw the old man watching him and so went up to him and said "You old people will never understand our generation. You grew up in a different world." He was talking so loudly that people around him began to listen. The old man said nothing. The student continued "Young people today grew up with TV, jet planes, space travel, men walking on the moon. We have nuclear energy, cell phones, computers, internet and many more things than you ever had." The old man sat there for a moment and then said "You're right son. We didn't have all those things when we were young...so we invented them. Now what are YOU going to do for the next generation?" The applause from the people listening was amazing.
The story made me laugh...but it also made me think. Each generation invents something new. Something the previous generation wouldn't have believed was possible. And so I wondered....what would you like to see the next generation invent? Do let me know!
PS: Hamish has retired from the BBC, but I shall be seeing him on Monday - any messages you'd like me to pass on?
self-important : someone who behaves in a way which shows they believe they are more important than other people