What Babies Born Today Won’t Recognize Tomorrow

Things like a 45 spindle adapter, reel-to-reel player, or 8-track cassette are fading from mainstream public consciousness.

But what are the things that babies born today won’t even recognize when they grow up?  Here’s a short list of the possibilities…

(1) Cassettes.

Car dashboards are one of the last places to play this woeful format, and those will be scrapped over time.  Let’s hope this problematic piece of plastic is spared a retro halo, and becomes unrecognizable to today’s newborns.

(2) Wired microphones.

But don’t expect karaoke to go anywhere…

(3) Record stores.

If Amoeba is still here ten years from now, it’ll be an entirely different store.  The rest?  Well, most chains and mom-and-pops are already gone.

(4) Spotty phone connections.

Let’s hope the dropped call becomes an early-2000s memory.  And, better access to music from anywhere results.

(5) Practical storage limitations.

The price of storage continues to plunge, and it’s getting more portable by the day.  So, that means more music, movies, images, and metadata in smaller and smaller drives, and a continued competitor to cloud-enabled solutions.  Perhaps ‘hybrid’ is the operative word for the future.

(6) Vinyl.

This is a really tough call.  How long will this nostalgia trip last?  Sure, wax gained last year, but this niche comeback is slowing.  In fifteen or twenty years, it may become just a fringe memory, and totally unrecognizable.

(7) Attention Spans.

The ability to remain focused is already retro.  We may be longing for those boring, 140-character conversations of old.

(8) Waiting for a release.

What’s that song?  The instant download or stream is the new path towards satisfaction.  Anticipation is dead, whether the artist likes it or not.

(9) Missing out on a fan connection.

What’s that song?  Identify it.  What’s that lyric? Google it.  Where’s the Facebook page?  Scan that QR code with a handheld (or whatever ID mechanism exists tomorrow).

(10) Artist Loyalty.

You can make a connection, but will it last?  Loyalty is already dying… fast.

(11) Record Labels.

…at least in the form we know them today.

(12) Platinum releases.

…at least if we’re still measuring albums.