Rushville Republican

Columns

February 18, 2014

WWII technology push shaped our future

The other day I was watching an old WWII movie and several times they showed a Walkie Talkie of that vintage. First off, I know it had limited range, limited battery power and worked on only one channel. They still had these when I was in the Army in later years. Then I took my cell phone out of my pocket, held it in my palm, it had numerous ways to communicate with others, really not bad battery life, took pictures, sent messages as well as you could talk on it.

One could, if needed, contact an individual in Asia or Africa if desired and send pictures, spoken word or even text messages. Back in the 70’s and 80’s when I was a volunteer fireman, we went from Citizens Band radios to rather large yet adequate hand held units. We went from telephone contact of our members to a type of pager we called a monitor.

The thing is, when I was young, in reality not all that long ago, so many of the items we have and take for granted today were not even considered. Were you to tell me in 1955 when I graduated from high school that I would live to see numerous people go to the moon, I would have laughed so hard it would hurt. Yet today, I have done that as well as seeing a probe that is now out of our galaxy and still putting right along. We have rovers on Mars and, I believe, are thinking on trying to land one on a moon of another planet. My how things have changed in my life time now to see if it is for the better or the worse.

I personally believe that WWII was the thing that started this huge push for new and better things. War tends to bring out the worse and the best in people. Both sides attempted to out do the other. Radar was so new I had never heard of it, television was a toy, color television unthought-of. Cell phones, Ipad, extremely portable music playing toys unknown. But the technology push by both the Allies and Axis powers put innovation and research and development in high gear. So many things came of the experiments of both sides of the war afterward that it truly shaped our future greatly. And in our country giving the masses the ability to attend college and do so in a rather inexpensive way for all our veterans I feel pushed that tech growth even more. People were able to do things only dreamed of by their parents or grand parents.

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