From DiscoVision to SelectaVision
While these videodisc formats ultimately failed, they signaled that consumers were hungry for control of their home viewing.
The Big Wheel
The Ferris wheel may not have been a new idea, but the revolving structure offered fun—from the fairgrounds to the classroom.
The Colonial History of the Telegraph
Gutta-percha, a natural resin, enabled European countries to communicate with their colonial outposts around the world.
Who Wants the Metaverse?
What exactly is the “metaverse,” and what could it be, beyond an overused, hyper-trendy prompt in marketing copy?
Ham Radio and Gender Politics
During its heyday in the 1950s, ham radio was predominantly a hobby for middle-class men, based in suburban homes.
Who Killed the Recumbent Bicycle?
How a dominant technology became viewed as the only option, with no need for better-designed competitors.
When the Push Button Was New, People Were Freaked
The mundane interface between human and machine caused social anxiety in the late nineteenth century.
How Technology Got Its Modern Meaning
If we give technology credit for changing history, does that mean we give ourselves less?
How Do Archaeologists Know Where to Dig?
Archaeologists used to dig primarily at sites that were easy to find thanks to obvious visual clues. But technology—and listening to local people—plays a bigger role now.
Does Virtual Learning Work for Every Student?
Given Covid-19, schools have limited options for teaching kids. What’s working and not working in the era of online learning?