Karan Verma

Views expressed here are mine alone

The Telegram is about Technology Centralization

The Telegram is about Technology Centralization

The first telegram in the United States was sent by Morse on 11 January 1838- replacing the more costly, inefficient & time consuming ‘Pony Express’ (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Pony_Express_Poster.jpg).
The Telegram stood for technological centralization, and any tech centralization that inconveniences or limits a fundamental consumer need, must ultimately go. What do I mean by tech centralization & it’s inconveniences?
1. You needed experts to be able to send and receive a telegram. A layman couldn’t do it, because it was not ‘simple’ enough, needed specialized know-how
2. Hence, the customer needed to go to the telegram center…..The telegram could not ‘travel’ to the customer, in other words, there was no means of initiating a telegram by the customer as per his convenience- from where he wanted, when he wanted
3. There were severe limitations to the ‘comprehensiveness’ of the message – limited text & size
4. There was no personal touch, no customization and certainly no interactivity of communication
5. While the telegram was a huge leap over the next best alternatives like the ‘Pony Express’, reducing the delivery time drastically, it still was not fast enough – especially from the telegram center to the recipient.
Most technologies, when they arrive, come in a centralized form. The first computers were huge, centralized machines run from specialists. Today, anyone can get more computing power on a $199 tablet than the first computer had- & a two year old uses it with the ease of a digital native!
While telegram will survive as an extremely niche service (check out this one: http://www.telegramstop.com/), the real reason why email wins over the telegram is not the cost per message, but the decentralization of technology that allows even a child to send a message from the comfort of his home, at the swirl of his finger.
In the consumer marketplace, that advantage wins hands on- every single time.
Its only a matter of time.

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2 comments on “The Telegram is about Technology Centralization

  1. Shainbird
    July 16, 2013

    I’m sure the people back then were overjoyed at the thought of sending telegrams as opposed to the pony express, just as we, now, are eased with cellphones over home phones.

  2. rajnishmishravns
    July 16, 2013

    Thanks. It gave me an additional perspective. Although, my post will take some more time before it reaches completion.

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This entry was posted on July 15, 2013 by in The Digital Universe and tagged .
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