Evolving Technology in the Workplace [Infographic]

Matthew Gates 3m 708 #workplacetechnology

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Workplace Technology in the Last Decade

In the beginning, there was man, and there was also work. Lots of work. Lots and lots of work. Lots of work that needed to be done. Man started out working through his own skin and bone, utilizing cultivation of agriculture and animals to help with his work. Horses, cows, oxen, pigs, dogs, sheep, goats, and other animals have been the reason that man has been able to survive for so long. Without the help of these creatures, there would probably be no civilization or cities that would have been able to grow. They have helped man along the way by having strength, endurance, meat, and milk. By providing the extra energy force and meat, man has grown into the being he is today.

With the help of animals also came the help of many different types of tools. Tools escalated man to be able to produce ten times and eventually thousands of times what he may have been able to originally produce. With the creation of societies and a growing population came the demand for tools, so man had to develop tools to be able to handle such a demand.

Factories came about where everything was run by a line of men who would use tools to place parts and piece them together. Eventually, nearly every man in every factory would no longer be needed because robots and machines would be designed to do the menial tasks that men were originally doing. These machines would become even more advanced and start performing even more advanced tasks, replacing man completely to the point where only several men were needed in a factory.

Unfortunately, with technology comes less of a demand for man and more of a demand for production which either means more machines or faster machines. Machines that can pretty much handle everything and only need very little general maintenance by a single man or small team of men.  Computers took the place of typewriters and Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn took the place of the phone, television, radio, and billboard advertisements. Technology has been and always will be a part of the workplace, making our lives easier, but also may be making human beings more obsolete in the workplace as technology becomes more advanced.

This infographic is a look back on 100 years of technology in the workplace.

Evolving Technology in the Workplace [Infographic]

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Knoll The Roll of Workplace Technology Is In Transition

100 Years of Workplace Technology

Technology has ben a part of the workplace for more than 100 years. During this time technology innovation exploded, driving major changes in the ways offices are planned, furnished, and used.


1907 COLOR PHOTGRAPHY invented by Auguste and Louis Lumiére

1908 Henry Ford mass produces the MODEL T

1919 James Smathers develops the first ELECTRIC TYPEWRITER

1923 ELECTRONIC TELEVISION invented by Philo Farnsworth

1937 Alan Turing develops the concept of a theoretical COMPUTING MACHINE

1943 First DIGITAL COMPUTER created (size of a room)

1956 OPTICAL FIBER invented by Basil Hirschowitz, C. Wilbur Peters, and Lawrence E. Curtis

1958 The first SILICON CHIP is produced by Jack Kilby and Robert Noyce

1963 COMPUTER MOUSE invented by Douglas Engelbart

1968 Original TABLET PC AND LAPTOP concept created by Alan Kay

1971 EMAIL invented by Ray Tomlinson

1971 FLOPPY DISK invented by David Noble with IBM

1973 PERSONAL COMPUTER invented by Xerox PARC

1973 MOBILE PHONE invented by Motorola

1982 First LAPTOP invented

1983 CAMCORDER invented by Sony

1984 APPLE MACINTOSH released


1990 WORLD WIDE WEB invented by Tim Berners-Lee

1993 Intel introduces the PENTIUM MICRO

1995 DITIGAL VIDEO DISC (DVD) invented

1997 First FLAT SCREENS hit the market

1998 GOOGLE goes live


2001 IPOD approved for distribution

2004 FACEBOOK goes live

2006 BLUE-RAY introduced

2006 TWITTER goes live

2007 IPHONE introduced

2008 First open-source CLOUD COMPUTING introduced


Office technology has become “Consumerized.”

People bring their personal technology to work, expecting the ability to “plug and play”

Driven by technology the workplace is becoming more FLEXIBLE AND NIMBLE. This new model requires a greater need for flexible furnishing.

Technology has a short “Half-Life.” As a result, technology should not be “rigidly integrated” into furniture that has 5 – 7 times its lifespan.

Engaging Workspace with Technology: A Planning Approach to Future-Proof Your Investment

Matthew Gates is a freelance web designer and currently runs Confessions of the Professions.




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