My father once told me that humans weren’t really built for the future that was coming for them. As a retail buyer in the old days he would sit and write out all the orders for the next year’s Christmas decorations by hand. After months of back and forth eventually he and some factory in China would reach agreement on how many containers of sparkly tinsel would be heading for our shores. The fax machine changed everything, but it would be e-mail that truly transformed the processes of his job, and pretty much everybody else’s.

E-mail was technically invented in the 1960s and became the form of communication we understand it to be today in the mid-1970s, and yet it was still novel enough in 1998 for Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan to seem revolutionary when they shared their love to each other in the romcom You’ve Got Mail.

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