1981 video about online newspapers


Here's a report from KRON in San Francisco about The San Francisco Examiner and Chronicle's forays into online news in 1981. (Thanks, Mark!)

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  1. “Richard Halloran – Owns Home Computer” is now my favorite 80’s action movie that never existed.

  2. I recall the hoopla about “Videotext” and did a paper about it in college. Imagine information on-demand! Most thought it was pretty far-fetched, but a the univ of florida j-school, we were pretty excited about it. Little did we know…

  3. If I’m ever interviewed on television “Owns Home Computer” is exactly what I want put under my name. Actually, now that I think about it, “Owned Home Computer” below my name is what I want put on my headstone when I die.

  4. What a jewel.

    “exceptions are pictures, ads and comic.”
    Yet poster “ad” shows “pictures” on screen.

    TWO HOURS! I sense throttling.

    Damn you Herb Caen…

  5. Sometimes I forget that the SF Examiner used to be a real newspaper. (These days it’s like the NY Post, only with less credibility.)

  6. The twenty-cent street edition?!?

    I… feel… old.

    I just bopped over to the Chronicle site, and it’s nice to see they have made a few improvements in speed since 1981 (I think I owe them five bucks though).

  7. oooh! look at all those cool old computers! i remember being the only kid on the street and certainly the only girl i knew who “owns a home computer.” mmm… g33ky fun! thx for posting this! I’m now gonna go bring up my TI-99/4A emulator on my Mac and try to remember how to program in extended basic.

  8. Probably the person who edited this video had no clue that someday he too would be at a keyboard.

    With faster broadband, I see the end of TV stations and print.. everything will be some Internet site or VOD … it’s a grim future.

  9. I teach mass media at a university, and this really turns my head. Did they have any idea where these experiments would lead for the newspaper industry? Gotta love that cradle modem!

  10. My enduring interest is how well or badly we think about the future, and why. I’ve written a book on this. Anyway, this video is a great example of one of the known issues in how we subtly mis-view the future: we overestimate the length of time to fundamental change, and underestimate how totally all-permeating the change will be when it does come. This was true of forward views of the automobile, in 1900 etc., etc. We’re making the same mistake in Feb 2009, of course. – Adam Gordon, Author: “Future Savvy,” (American Management Association Press, NY, 2009)

  11. My enduring interest is how well or badly we think about the future, and why. I’ve written a book on this. Anyway, this video is a great example of one of the known issues in how we subtly mis-view the future: we overestimate the length of time to fundamental change, and underestimate how totally all-permeating the change will be when it does come. This was true of forward views of the automobile, in 1900 etc., etc. We’re making the same mistake in Feb 2009, of course. – Adam Gordon, Author: “Future Savvy,” (American Management Association Press, NY, 2009) http://www.futuresavvy.net

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