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by C. D.

Those born between 1900s to 2000s are the young generation and so-called generation Z or GenZ.  Here are some things that millennials grew up with that GenZ kids have no clue about.


Before mobile phones, we used a black coloured land-line rotary telephone and dialled numbers using our finger in a numbered slot. We used to speak to an operator to connect us to a number.


Since there were no mobile phones to save phone numbers, we used Rolodexes and address books, both of which young people have probably never used.


Until transistor radios were invented, we used a large table-top radio operated by glass valves, capacitors and resistors and connected to an aerial placed at the top of the roof. The radios were powerful enough to connect us to worldwide stations. Before Spotify or Apple Music, we had cassette players to listen to music. For music in cars, we had a 8-track tape player.


Huge boxed shaped television sets, connected with antennas placed at the rooftop, showed only black and white films. 


Overseas communication was only by a telegram, then came telex and then a fax. All these are mostly obsolete now.


Before Netflix, Prime and many other online companies, we used to rent Video Tapes from a video company.  DVDs replaced Video tapes years later.


We used floppy disks to save any document or file.


When internet finally arrived, we had to wait for the connections patiently thanks to dial-up. 

Dial-up was defined by a strange, hollow, echoing sound that signalled that you were connected to the internet.


Before Google came into existence, we used thick Yellow Pages books, printed by telephone companies, to find a telephone number or an address. For general knowledge, we used Encyclopedia, a set of books giving information on many subjects and typically arranged alphabetically. 


Before the invention of a button that automatically opened and closed the car window for you instantly, we had to use a crank handle to manually open or close the window.


We used to fly on an airplane operated by noisy propellers unlike today’s silent turbo jet engines. There were two sections on a plane. Smoking and non-smoking. If you think the air travel experience generally stinks now, it was worse when hair and clothes all stunk from cigarette smoke when you finally left the airplane.


Compared to todays’s online games, ours games were mostly outdoors playing with marbles. Studies have shown that GenZ children played outdoors for an average of four hours a week, significantly less than their parents who played outdoors for around eight hours when they were children. This is primarily attributable to technological development, including new media of entertainment, social media and online gaming.


With technology evolving at such a fast pace and a new generation entering their careers, we should give them a credit they deserve especially since they are the driving force behind the future. They will eventually shape how one work five years from now.

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