Re: Bored of Blue LED now!
In the 70s and 80s, high technology came with a wooden veneer and lots of lovely knobs, flick switches and dials.
In the 90s, it was CHROME, CHROME EVERYWHERE...
Eeehhhh, maybe, maybe not, depending on where you lived, I guess.
For me, the late '60s/early '70s had the cool wooden veneer cases with lots of backlit FM dials, and those edge-lit electroluminescent signal/VU meters, and yeah, more knobs and flip switches than you could shake a stick at.
The mid '70s came along and all that stuff turned into red LEDs, except perhaps for VU meters, most of which still used needles. Still lots of fake wood until the late '70s and early '80s, when we suddenly started seeing all the chrome and fake brushed aluminum we could take. The early '80s also gave us really cool electroluminescent VU meters along with LEDs everywhere in our tape decks -- or, as my sound geek pals called it, "Tokyo By Night". (Interestingly, I don't remember a whole lot of LCD displays on stereos back then)
In the '90s every display in every sound-system component I saw turned into blue and amber LEDs, even the VU meters, and with lots of those little pushy-touch switches -- and lots and lots of black. Cases, knobs, display bezels, everything. The sound components on the table next to me -- tuner, amp, CD player -- were bought as a set around 1991 or '92, and it's just a big-assed stack of black. The tape deck was bought in the mid/late '90s and it, too, is a big ol' black slab.
...It's just one of those things. Next it'll be touch screens on everything...
Yeah, even touch screens on things which aren't really suited for touch screens, sadly. Still, I have seen some consumer electronics and appliances that have benefited from having little EL screens with little bare-bones GUIs running on them. We just got a new printer/scanner/copier combo at our house, and it has a little screen on it about the size of a video iPod screen with four or five buttons around it that let you click and scroll through the menus. Really well done, actually.
Actually -- granted, it's a long shot and rather silly -- I'm hoping the next trend in stereo components is brushed aluminum and wood cases with little nixie-tube displays for the tuners. I know you really need LEDs or LCDs to build a proper handheld calculator, but nixies still have a slight edge in "coolness".