Just 50 years...
It was 50 years ago today that Sputnik was placed into orbit. Only 50 years ago were the bits put into place that make much of what we take for granted possible. 10 years after Sputnik - there were enough satellites out there to allow for the first worldwide satellite TV program (the Beatles performing "All You Need is Love" on June 25th, 1967).
I've relied on satellite technology for my internet connection. I listen pretty much exclusively to music broadcast over satellite - be it at home or in the car. Our telecommunications, weather forecasting, so many things rely on that.
And 50 years plus a day ago, none of it existed. It still boggles my mind how fast technology is advancing. I think my car has more computing horsepower today than existed in total back when that satellite was launched. My phone (treo 700p) is more powerful than my first computer was (a tandy 1000ex) - and it provides me with an EVDO broadband connection pretty much anywhere in North America.
And just a short 105 years ago - a technology that perhaps changed more things day to day than anything else - the air conditioner. So - question to you all - what do you think is the most revolutionary invention in the last hundred or so years (and why). I vote for the air conditioner - at least in the US, without it - summer would be very different.