Was it a bird? A plane? It sure as shit wasn’t superman. It was the computer! That’s right, folks, the computer was Time Magazine’s “Person of the Year” in 1983. Hey, Orwell’s dystopia was fast approaching and people were enamored with all of the things that the computer could do. Even Earth, Wind and Fire were using a computer to coordinate the elaborate pyrotechnics of their shows. Did I mention that the computer could send a message at the speed of light?
The nations of the West were scrambling to computerize and this would ultimately enlarge the gap between the haves and the have-nots. Regardless, statistics were showing that the computer was going to become as commonplace as the television. People expected that nearly every home in America would have a computer.
While the hype of the personal computer was surpassing expectations, other events were equally as important before the beginning of 1983. The Soviets were released from the tight grip of Leonid Brezhnev and Israel invaded Lebanon and bombed Palestinians. There was a high unemployment rate and the fabled fiscal cliff was all over the news. To tell you the truth, the times weren’t really all that different, aside from the fact that people can set off bombs using their phones now instead of using huge desktop.
The computer, perhaps, was going to help change all that bad to good. Apple and IBM were running full steam ahead and evolving each year. The machines were helping people and creating an ever-expansive world. They were something not to fear, but embrace. The article couldn’t have put it any better, “Perhaps the revolution will fulfill itself only when people no longer see anything unusual in the brave New World, when they see their computer not as a fearsome challenger to their intelligence but as a useful linkup of some everyday gadgets: the calculator, the TV and the typewriter.” Know more.