Saturday, August 18, 2007

Happy Birthday, Dear CD

The compact disc turns 25 years old today. Finally, those little shiny rings of plastic are old enough to run for Congress.

I'm only slightly older than CDs, and it is therefore fitting that I've always been partial to the format. I'm part of an increasingly rare breed: it seems like these days all of the cool kids are either into vinyl or MP3s.

Anyway, I think that one of the most important consequences of the compact disc was making music geekery more accessible. I have a fairly modest CD collection, but I shudder to think of the space that would be consumed if I owned all of my albums on LP. The CD provided fans with a format that did away with the many shortcomings of cassettes and was small enough that you didn't have to devote a room of your house to storing your records.

Of course, it's practically inevitable that one day, a single hard drive will be able to hold the entirety of recorded music, and I'll just be another geezer complaining about those kids with their 20 yottabite iPods, and their metal-punk-hip-hop.

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