Things We Take for Granted, and Things We Don’t Miss

According to Robert Shiller’s Narrative Economics, suitcases with wheels didn’t become popular until the mid 90s. This was one of those things that made me stop and think, wow, I haven’t once thought about what a pain in the neck it was to travel when you had to carry your luggage

I can hear the eye balls rolling. I get it, in terms of life changing inventions, wheels on suitcases are pretty far down the totem pole, but it got me thinking about other things we take for granted, and the things we don’t miss that we never think about anymore.

  • Suitcases with wheels (carrying luggage)
  • Vaccines (rampant disease and premature death)
  • Direct deposit (checks)
  • StubHub (scalpers)
  • Caller ID  (hi, who is this?)
  • Podcasts (AM radio)
  • Netflix and streaming (Blockbuster and VHS)
  • DVR (commercials)
  • Venmo (I’ll pay you next time I see you)
  • High-speed internet (dial up)
  • Smart Phones (flip phones, Zack Morris brick phones, car phones, cameras)
  • Commission free trades (Schwab was charging $30 a trade as recently as the 90s)
  • Uber (taxis)
  • Credit cards (cash)
  • Central air conditioning (fans, wall units)
  • Disposable diapers (cloth diapers)
  • Laundry machines (buckets with water, rivers)
  • Flat screens/HD TV (giant bulky TVs)
  • Google (encyclopedias)
  • Amazon (stores)
  • Email (physical mail)
  • Safe cars (more than 50,000 people per year were killed in car crashes in the mid 1960s)
  • GPS (physical maps)
  • Spell check (grammar police)
  • Facebook and Twitter (actual friends)
  • Bull markets (bear markets)
  • The Federal Reserve (just kidding)

What did I miss?