tip off

Is this the NBN’s grandmother?

Click to go to video

Here’s a possible pointer to the glorious future the NBN will bring to country Australia.

Made in 1992, this Telecom Australia (former name of Telstra) promotional video touts the huge benefits broadband will create for business in Australia. Seems to get it right on most things despite the lousy acting, lousy script, lousy props and big glasses. My memory’s hazy about what you could do and couldn’t do in those days but I do recall at a meeting in 1991 seeing a portable projector attached to a laptop for the first time (worked liked an epidiascope IIRC).

So far as the period is concerned, I notice the boss doesn’t say please, blokes can’t touch type, the Japanese take laser copies and workers seem to be a trifle more physically familiar with their colleagues than would probably be acceptable today. Oh, and billion dollar investments were won on a night’s work, a few nods and some pretty pictures. My favourite bit is the map of the Red Water Creek plant that’s being printed in part 3 — do you recognize it? The biggest advances since 1992 have probably been made in the quality of corporate videos!

Note there are three parts to the video but they’re pretty short. BTW the video’s at Paleofuture, which is certainly one of the most interesting sites I’ve seen in a while.


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  • 1
    Posted May 27, 2011 at 11:02 am | Permalink

    I enjoyed what I was able to see, but irony of ironies, my buffering was hopeless so had to give it up at the end of the first clip!

    Fascinating though to reflect on where we are in relation to where we thought we’d be. And as for that laptop! I reckon it’d give you pinched nerves in your thighs if you actually sat something that big on your lap for more than a minute!

  • 2
    Posted May 27, 2011 at 11:18 am | Permalink

    That laptop reminds me I had a (work) Compaq “portable computer” circa 1987 that was as big and as heavy as a sewing machine — don’t think the term “laptop” had been invented then (with good reason). It had a 10″ orange plasma screen and less power, I reckon, than my current bicycle speedo.