We're living in the golden age of the gadget. Don't believe it? Check your pockets. Odds are you're carrying a portable music player, an electronic organizer, a keychain-size storage device, a digital camera, or a cell phone that combines some or all of these functions. And you'd probably be hard-pressed to live without them.
At PC World, we'd be lost without these things. We don't merely test and write about digital gear, we live and breathe the stuff. In honor of this raging gizmo infatuation, we polled our editors and asked them to name the top 50 gadgets of the last 50 years. The rules? The devices had to be relatively small (no cars or big-screen TVs, for example), and we considered only those items whose digital descendants are covered in PC World (cameras, yes; blenders, no). We rated each gadget on its usefulness, design, degree of innovation, and influence on subsequent gadgets, as well as...
"And you'd probably be hard-pressed to live without them."
I'm over 30 and have never had a driver's license....logically I have never owned a car....I hardly use the cell phone and see no reason to keep paying for cell service, so the phone will go out the door...one day the computer will go also. The TV? What's a TV? (Ok I know, but I can live without it). I can do just fine without them. Being tied to the "e-leash" or bound to gadgets is a disaster waiting to happen when they fail to function or the means to make them function ceases to exist.
Sounds like Brother Neil was, like myself not willing or not able to spring for one of those VAUNTED HP-41C's, which was the true "rocket-ship" of calculators back When the 11C,12C,15C, and 16C came out.
Most of the people I know who owned one didn't even come close to using all the features (native and expandible) that it had.
'Tin opener' followed by 'electric tin opener' followed by 'ring pull' opening tins...just waiting for the electric self-opening/serving/self-disposing tin
Seriously...have you ever been camping with tins of beans etc...forgot the tin opener...forgot the next best camping gadget...'the swiss army knife'...but had in possession one unsharpened chopping axe? Ever had crisps for breakfast?