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RetroTech: 1993


When the members of the class of 2016 were bright-eyed newborns 18-19 years ago, the world was a different place.

The Cold War had recently come to a close.  Nelson Mandela won the Nobel Peace Prize. Saved by the Bell wrapped up its final season.  Michael Jordan won his third NBA championship in a row before surprising the basketball community by choosing to retire to (temporarily) pursue a career in professional baseball.

Technology began making strides towards what we consider modern technology. As the freshmen class begins its journey here at Boston College, let’s take a look back to see just how far the world has come during the lifetime of the Class of 2016.

In 1993, Microsoft released Windows NT with the hope that it would revolutionize the technological operations in the corporate world. At the time, Internet Explorer had not yet been released and two more years would pass before the first version became available to the public.

In February 1993, Apple hit the ten million mark in Mac users, a huge milestone at the time. To put that into context, in 2011 Apple sold approximately seventeen million computers, with millions of other customers buying and using portable devices such as phones, iPods, and iPads.

In 1993, Apple released its “Color Classic” computer, which boasted a ten-inch screen and a maximum of ten megabytes of memory. This state-of-the-art machine helped put Apple on the map with computer sales. Apple would release many other computer models in 1993, including seven in October alone, as their sales and popularity increased.

Music had yet to enter the online age in 1993, when nearly 600 million albums were sold, none of which were downloaded. In 2011, just 330.6 million albums were sold, and over 100 million of those were downloaded online. The Recording Industry Association of American estimates that 4 out of 5 digital downloads of music are illegal.

The Simon Personal Communicator, an iPhone before there were iPhones, was released. The 20-ounce device not only let you make calls, but also included a pager, calculator, address book, fax, and email access. All for just $900!

What changes will the next 18 years bring?




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