It doesn’t seem to matter whether it’s optical disc drives, PS/2, digital audio players, or CRT monitors, there always seems to be an enormous group of people who gain some sense of superiority by deriding what they perceive to be old technology, even when the older technology, to anyone who actually knows their ass from a hole in the ground, far surpasses newer technology in either in some key aspect or in nearly every aspect. There are tech enthusiasts and there are those who masquerade as tech enthusiasts. I sometimes call them the RGB casuals when it comes to computer hardware and I suppose you could call them the Bluetooth casuals as they relate to all other tech. It’s easy to root one out: Just mention optical drives, PS/2 ports, or CRT monitors in their presence and they will reflexively scoff. Alternatively, whip out a digital audio player and they’ll be quick to poke fun at what they invariably assume is an iPod. They cannot help themselves. They will not pass up any opportunity they get to speak from their ass in a pathetic attempt to impress us all with how savvy they think they are.
I used to work in a computer store. I’m all too familiar with the type. People used to come in with the sole intention of impressing the sales staff with their knowledge or to try to shame us for our lack thereof. The actually knowledgeable customers tended to mind their own business, get what they came for, and leave. Only those who knew less than dick ever felt the need to flex and it might have worked at Best Buy, but I had several coworkers who were actually fairly knowledgeable and who were intellectual giants compared to 99% of the customers they served. Some of my coworkers, however, were just as guilty of talking out of their asses. Some of them tried to belittle me for something as fucking innocuous as having an optical disc drive in my computer(s).
I don’t have optical disc drives in my computers anymore because computer cases stopped coming with 5.25″ bays, but I just assembled my own external optical disc drive and I use optical media on a constant basis. I’ve had guests who have come to my house and actually made nasty remarks about my DVD and Blu-ray collection, thinking that they’re gaining some kind of nerd points when all they’re doing is exposing their ignorance and being an asshole. You don’t gain any nerd points with me by revealing that you’ve given up on ever owning anything or that you foolishly believe streaming is comparable in quality to a Blu-ray or a CD.
You don’t gain any nerd points by stupidly thinking that USB is somehow superior to PS/2 or that your expensive “gaming” monitor somehow outperforms the supreme responsiveness of a CRT. You don’t gain nerd points by being unable to differentiate between an iPod and a modern digital audio player. Just because a technology is older does not automatically render it inferior. Maybe you could have made that argument in the past, but, in the year 2019, we are bombarded with so much useless technology every day that that’s just not the way it works anymore. It’s not about improving our lives anymore, it’s about selling you a bunch of useless plastic shit with Bluetooth that’s going to wind up in a landfill a few months from now. It’s about capitalism run amok.
My mother has a refrigerator from the 1950s in her garage that works better than any modern refrigerator I have ever encountered, including the ones with screens so you can see what’s inside your refrigerator without opening the fucking door, and the only reason it gets hidden away in the garage is because it’s not pretty to look at.
Also, as far as the iPod goes, I just want to say that, while it lacked solid-state storage and didn’t offer particularly great audio quality, even the most ancient iPods still boasted a better user interface than any digital audio player on the market today. Somehow though, if you don’t have all your music on your phone or if you don’t just stream everything, you’re considered old fashioned. Well, I’ve never cared much for being in fashion. I’ve been wearing nothing but black slacks since I was fourteen years old and my hairstyle hasn’t changed since I was about ten.
No one gives a shit about quality anymore. That’s why they reject optical media and modern digital audio players in favor of this convenience culture. Sure, we’ve seen a backlash with the reemergence of vinyl, but I see that as more of a fashion statement for hipsters. There just doesn’t seem to be much room for a middle ground. To be clear though, I don’t use a CRT monitor and I reserve my PS/2 port for emergency use only (i.e., when USB isn’t working because USB is unreliable as fuck), but I also recognize the merits of these technologies. Technologies like CRT and PS/2 have taught me to be suspicious of new tech, to not blindly accept it, and to assume that any new tech is probably just trying to harvest my personal data. The real technological developments in recent years have just been the new and innovative ways in which corporations can violate your consumer rights and privacy with impunity.