Sunday, 27 April 2014

Writing - Revolutionising communications

It's definite I'm getting old! Things like going to see the doctor and being faced with an apparent 15 year old at the other side of the desk; or being pulled up for speeding in the car by an adolescent; and, repeating statements about how there's nothing new under the sun! - All sure signs. In a sense the last statement is a cop out. Saves us oldies having to concern ourselves about change and that is the bottom line. It's all about change. That seems to be the nature of us humans.

Penny Black

Teacher and social reformer Rowland Hill had the idea of a stamp in the 1830's and it was up and running by May 1st 1840. The idea being to replace the need to pay the postman when he delivered a letter with a piece of paper, with a glutinous wash activated by moistening, that proved the fee had been paid. He had the Royal Mint engraver produce a memorable image and that led to the above 'Penny Black'.
The news was broadcast and commented on in the Town with this saucy poem,
You must kiss our fair Queen,
or her pictures, that's clear.
Or the gummy medallion
will never adhere.
You will not kiss her hand,
you will readily find
But actually kiss little Vicky's behind

The Penny Black was an instant hit. Within a week the presses were working round the clock producing 600,000 stamps a day. Communication changed from that day forward.

Now that change I'm sure would have had detractors just the same as the telephone, computer, mobile phone, tablet and more have had since the stamp. I think that human nature is such that complaining about inevitable change will not diminish. However, when chatting to friends on Saturday night, I was interested to learn of another change that would seem to be girding its loins ready to change our world.

Edison's Light bulb

We have had light bulbs for a long time but it would seem that they are coming to the end of their lives. They have been improved over the years until the low energy bulbs are more common.

 but even these innovations are no longer the must have alternatives to the old invention. The new God of light are led which have been creeping into greater use for some while. Apparently most modern police cars flashing lights are made from groups of these little gems  which use very little power and are exceedingly powerful. In fact my friends were saying that they use head torches for working in tight spaces when hand held torches are impractical. They have developed to such a level that they are being used as street lights.

So we can be as inventive as we like when we write our ideas may well generate innovation in reality.

God Bless