First Impressions of the 'Tele-Phone' From 1876

Nineteenth century communications technology met the 21st century in a series of Twitter posts this week.

Farooq Butt, SVP of business development and strategy for over-the-air power startup WiTricity, posted a series of tweets and retweets this week that make great points about the history of technology and the lessons we can learn today.

The first tweet to cross my eye:

Viewing Butt's Twitter stream (on my "pocket tele-phone") I saw he'd been tweeting about innovation and the history of technology for days.

Here's Butt on luxury and disruption -- an intersection service providers and tech companies struggle with:

If this were a classroom, my hand would be shooting in the air like Arnold Horshack's:

The tech company that understands affordable luxury is Apple -- and Apple's products drive considerable revenue for carriers.

Butt also tweeted about government shortsightedness in the face of technology innovation. It's nothing new:

And he retweeted a comment from 1979 that's even more relevant today in light of connected car innovations:

I interviewed Butt to find out more about the messages he was sending.

Butt says he's interested in the history of technology and innovation.

"People have had concerns throughout history that technology is going to make us all lose our humanity, it's going to make us lose our jobs," Butt says. "You can see that these fears have come to the surface and been repudiated every single time. Every time we have new technology, people rise up and say, 'This time it's different.' It's never that different."

I also asked Butt about his company. WiTricity uses magnetic fields to charge devices wirelessly, over the air. The company is working on applications that include mobile devices -- just hold them near a charging station to power up -- and electric cars that charge as soon as you drive them into the garage.

For more about OTT services (such as Twitter) and other services, visit Light Reading's Services content channel.

Just for the heck of it, two more of Butt's retweets:


And more Arnold Horshack, just because it's Friday:

COMMENTS Add Comment
Be the first to post a comment regarding this story.
Sign In