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This 1906 Cartoon Predicted the Smartphone

Who would have thought that in 1906, a cartoonist for the British Punch Magazine would have predicted the social isolation that accompanied the rise of the smartphone age? The cartoon, titled “Development of Wireless Telegraphy. Scene in Hyde Park,” shows a high-society couple, each engrossed in their “wireless telegraphy” devices, ignoring each other. The caption reads, “These two figures are not communicating with one another. The lady is receiving an amatory message, and the gentleman some racing results.” Just replace “receiving an amatory message” with “texting with her bestie” and “racing results” with “fantasy football scores,” and the cartoon could probably still run today …

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