Happy 40th Birthday, Cell Phone!

Forty years ago, Motorola Lead Engineer, Dr. Martin Cooper perfected his invention and made the first successful cellular telephone call. Using the prototype for the DynaTAC, Cooper called the head of development for Bell Systems, Motorola’s main competitor at the time.That was April 3, 1973.

Can you hear me now?

Can you hear me now?

Ten years later, the DynaTAC hit the market for a cool 4K. Just in case you’re curious, that’s the equivalent of paying 9K for a cell phone in today’s money. Back then, it was considered a major status symbol and viewed as a symbol of affluence. From Donald Trump to Zack Morris, every old skool “baller,” was seen rocking the brick . These days, we dress up as “The Zack Morris Phone” for Comicon, while the great Gordon Gekko’s famous DynaTAC is now a sight-gag. 

D'oh!

D’oh!

In the 30 years since it first hit the market, a toy of titans has morphed into a device that is changing the way we live our lives and interact with each other. The cell phone is accessible and available to almost everyone, even developing countries.

Forget Waldo, find his phone!

Forget Waldo, find his phone!

I’m not going to start lamenting the loss of random conversations with strange people in a doctor’s waiting room, or go on about how “smart phones,” are making us a dumb group of dummys. No,it’s all positive. You see, we’ve got a birthday to celebrate!!!

Happy Birthday, dear cell phone!

40 years old and look at you, you beautiful bastard!

Hot-cha-cha!

Hot-cha-cha!

You’re leaner, meaner, sexier, smarter and more desired that ever! You’re like the Rosemary George Clooney of technology. Though let’s face it, the world expects you to be as thin and beautiful as possible, it’s pretty clear…YOU’RE A LADY!

Still gots it gurl!

Sexiest Clooney, Hands Down.

A vibrant and sexually fertile woman, who just gets better with age. 40 is the new 20, and girl, you’ve got it going on. Use yourself to call all of your girlfriends and go out for a ladies night, RIGHT NOW.

Oh my.

Oh my.

You see, you’ve crossed over into a great time in your life, and while you’re most likely going to drink so much Sangria tonight that you cuss out the night manager at McDonald’s for not serving fried cheese, own and celebrate all those years, you earned it, girl!

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Comments

Happy 40th Birthday, Cell Phone! — 1 Comment

  1. In recent months, I have seen several accounts in the press discussing Martin Cooper’s role in the development of the cell phone. I worked for Martin at Motorola Communications and Industrial Electronics (C&IE) from November 1959 to June 1960. Motorola was developing the latest in a series of two way radio products of ever smaller size. These developments were part of an evolutionary process that led eventually to the cell phone. I was fresh out of school and my contributions were of no particular significance.

    But let me tell you about something I observed on a daily basis at Motorola’s plant in Chicago. Motorola C&IE had two black employees. They tended an incinerator on the opposite side of the parking lot from the plant. They were not allowed into the building. Not to take a break or eat lunch. Not to use the rest rooms. Not to warm up in the middle of Chicago’s sub zero winters. And my fellow employees would take their breaks at the second floor windows overlooking that parking lot, and they would make insulting, racist comments about the two black employees.

    I went to human relations, and in the most non-confrontational way that I could muster I asked why Motorola did not employ on the basis of ability, without regard to race. And at my six month review, I was terminated.

    You don’t have to take my word concerning Motorola’s employment policies. In September of 1980, Motorola agreed to pay up to $10 million in back pay to some 11,000 blacks who were denied jobs over a seven-year period and to institute a $5 million affirmative action program, according to the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission.

    I have a question for Martin Cooper. Marty, what did you ever do to challenge the blatant, toxic racial discrimination at Motorola?

    Robert Gilchrist Huenemann, M.S.E.E.
    120 Harbern Way
    Hollister, CA 95023-9708

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