Humans have been dialing numbers for almost a hundred years—which, when you think about it, is not really that long at all. We’ve been talking for around 1.75 million years, so considering that blabbing is a favorite pastime of ours, it took us a long time to work out how to invent a telephone. Once Bell had done that, however, we all jumped on the dialing bandwagon and did what humans do best—made it better.
Technology moves fast, but your fingers don’t move fast enough it seems. The thing is that dialing numbers is a bore. Now that we all have “autodial from contacts,” you don’t find people manually dialing just for the fun of it.
There are a couple of things that have happened as a result of people no longer having to manually dial numbers in order to make a call:
- We don’t have to memorize numbers anymore. This is only a problem when you have to use a public phone to call a friend. If you are arrested, for example, and your phone is confiscated. How do you make your one phone call?
- We don’t mess up. Dialing manually leaves room for mistakes. You mis-dial, and have to start over.
- We simply don’t expect to have to dial. The dialer on your phone is hidden away rather like an afterthought.
Auto dial is a Godsend. But there was always a catch: the conference call.
Auto dial and conference calling didn’t go together in the past. Ironically, this means that you were always most likely to mess up getting into a call for the most professional and important calls that you would have to make in a week. You’d never mess up when it didn’t matter —calling your Mom or your friend Rob for a chat—but the chances of mis-dialing were way high for that crucial, one-shot-to-land-the-most-important-deal meeting call.