newarenanow wrote:Freshman year in college, I remember going to the computer lab and emailing my friends. It was pretty cool. I remember we'd go up all drunk at night and type drunken emails. We thought we were hilarious (looking back, we were idiots).
That was teh first I remember.
Honestly, it was amazing how much changed in the 5 years from when I was a freshman in college to the first year I was out of school.
1) Freshman year in college, I bet only 3 or 4 people I knew had a computer in their dorm room. You had to use the computer lab. And no one really went on the internet because there really wasn't much. We used to keep our fantasy FB team stats in notebooks for god's sake! And then within the next 5 years, everyone had a laptop or some form of computer in their dorm room. No one went to the computer lab.
2) Cell phones. I knew 2 people with a cell phone in college, and you could only use it after 9pm because it cost a lot of money to call prior to that. I remember at 9, I'd use my roomates phone to first call my girlfriend and talk for like 20 minutes, and then call my parents every once in a while. Other than that, you had to use a phone card to make off campus calls. 5 years later, my first year out of school, everyone had a cell phone and you could call whenever you wanted.
3) DVD players. I was the only person i my frat with a DVD player. Everyone else had tape players still. When I graduated, like 2 years later, no one had a VHS.
Just in the span from 1996 - 2001, I think technology changed big time. It was the most drastic change I can think of. Sure, there are advances every day, but I think in those 5 years, technology took a HUGE leap into digitial technology.
You got in and out of college one year ahead of me. My freshman year, we may have been the only dorm room on our floor where both roommates had their own computers. I remember that web addresses were usually short abbreviations, and not every company had one. By my third year of college, it was almost impossible to make a call out of our fraternity because the 8-10 phone lines were occupied by computers. By the time I left, we had a computer lab in a library of our house entirely on a cable network. A couple of guys had wireless, but it wasn't common. It's mind-boggling that this progression was less than five years.
As far as phone calls, 1800CALLATT, 10-10-321, calling cards, etc. were the norm when I went to college. Cells were expensive, unless you called at night. By the time I left, 75% of incoming freshman had cell phones.
To the OP, I remember a friend having prodigy in the mid-1990's, but didn't really understand what he was doing with it. I started using Netscape with a dial up in the summer of 1997, right after I graduate high school. I had this conversation with a buddy recently: If you were two years older than me and you were on the internet in high school, you were a "computer nerd". If you were two years younger than me and not on the internet in high school, there was something wrong with you.