If you understand the environment in which medieval scholars created and used books, you can better appreciate why medieval books look and function the way they do. Understanding the cultural impact of computers requires us to study the development of both hardware and technology. Playing a text adventure game on an iOS device is convenient, but does not capture the physicality of the original games, with their instruction manuals (often written with some game tie-in, as if the player were handling an in-game character’s notebook), or the physicality of the reams of green-lined, perforated paper folding up underneath a printer terminal, or the electric-train-motor smell of a hot, hard-working print head. The curved glass of a cathode ray tube picked up the reflections of the overhead lighting, or, if you were the cinematographer for Cold War thriller War Games, the reflections of Matthew Broderick and Ally Sheedy, playing teenagers who unknowingly triggered a countdown to WWIII by playing what they thought was a just game. I am not about to trade in my iPad for a CRT, but I will take a moment to ponder what seems to be the disappearance of the CRT manufacturing process.
The classic arcade cabinet will soon be all but extinct. The niche market of manufacturing CRT televisions has officially hit a wall and the experience of playing a classic arcade game as it was originally intended will be a very rare thing in the near future. —Gizmodo