Rhymes of History

Someone once said, “The future will be like the past, only with cooler toys.” This quotes aligns nicely with the Rhymes of History; one of the six forces, which determine the emergence of technology. Dr. Thornburg, (2009a) defines rhymes of history as a new technology which rekindles something from the past (Thornburg, 2009a). In other words, a new technology is the emergence of the impact felt by a previous technology from the past.

This however, is not the only force determining the evolution of new technologies. There is evolutionary technologies in which the new technology is a growth or progression of a previous one. Disruptive technologies is the sudden appearance of a technology out of nowhere, which creates a brand new way of thinking about a technology task. The force of science fiction occurs when a new technology emerges from science based science-fiction. Increasing Returns between two competing technologies where one stays and other disappears for a variety of reasons. The sixth force termed Red Queen is when two technologies move to front of the line because of fierce competition.

In terms of rhymes of history, a good example is the Smart Board. Smart Boards are interactive white boards with a touch screen allowing presenters to have more control over their presentations as well as more interaction with the audience. Smart boards are widely used during conferences, workshops, meetings and even classrooms (Whatley, 2012). When I think of the Smart Board, I think of blackboards. While blackboard were used to write notes, teach lessons, and display information, the Smart Board takes it to another level by allowing for touch screen capabilities. Teachers can also use a digital pen when delivering content and information. Students can also interact with the Smart Board since it is connected to a computer, which then allows access to the Internet. This type of learning allow for more effective teaching, learning, and collaboration. Students can become more actively engaged in the learning process instead of sitting at their desks watching the teacher writing notes and drawing diagrams on the blackboard. As technology advances, it will be interesting to see how the Smart Board evolves.


Laureate Education, Inc. (2009a). Emerging and future technology: Six forces that drive emerging technologies. Baltimore, MD: Author.


2 thoughts on “Rhymes of History

  1. Your post made me think of the iconoclasts. They used statues to teach about history. The eventual iconoclastic controversy pertained to the religious belief that the statues used for teaching violated a religious law that pertained to the possession of graven images. Man-kind has long used concrete objects to teach. The Smart Board is just the latest and greatest. Good rhyme!

  2. Continuing the Smart Board theme =) Smart Boards definitely serve the same purpose as black boards with significantly more functions. Good example!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s