See the technology and gadgets that were hot 40 years ago. This photo gallery has all of 1975's coolest innovations.
Pong - In 1972, Atari Inc. launched an electronic table-tennis game called "Pong" at arcades across America. But in 1975, the game would be sold in a home version, changing gaming forever. The Atari Pong console was sold exclusively at Sears and became a hot item during Christmas 1975. It's hard for people today to imagine a world where you had to leave the house to play video games because 40 years ago, this little machine changed everything. GALLERY BY CLINT DAVIS (@MrClintDavis).
Digital Camera - Another gadget that's nearly impossible to imagine us living without today. Steven Sasson, an engineer at Kodak, invented the first digital camera in 1975 and now practically everyone in the United States carries one in their pocket. It took about 25 years for digital cameras to become widely available among consumers but the concept was revolutionary 40 years ago.
Disposable Razor - In 1975, Bic launched the world's first completely disposable razor. The one-piece safety razor was quickly copied by Gillette, who rushed its version to market the following year.
Cell Phone - If there's one modern invention the world likely couldn't imagine being without, it would be the cell phone. In 1975, Motorola, Inc. patented this revolutionary invention. The patent for the "Radio telephone system" was actually filed in 1973 but was published 40 years ago in 1975. Motorola was a leader in the early days of cell phones but would eventually lose billions and became defunct 36 years after the patent was granted.
Laser Printer - If you look around your home or office, chances are you'll find a laser printer somewhere, a device that was first created in 1975. The IBM 3800 Laser Printer (pictured) was announced in April 1975 and was the world's first commercially available device of its kind. The IBM 3800 was eventually replaced by the 3900 model in 1990.
Betamax - If you're too young to remember watching movies on the Sony Betamax player, you've at least probably heard the name of this classic example of obsolete technology. Betamax hit the market in 1975, over a year before VHS but eventually would lose the videotape format war to that rival. It's been 40 years since the Betamax was a hot gadget but its name still resonates today.
Microsoft - Obviously Microsoft itself isn't a gadget but the company — founded in 1975 — is responsible for some of the most important home computing innovations of all time. It was 40 years ago that Bill Gates and his childhood friend Paul Allen launched Microsoft under its original moniker "Micro-Soft" in Albaquerque, New Mexico. The company would go on to dominate the market of operating systems (Windows) and office software (Microsoft Office). In 2014, the company earned $23.38 billion.
Altair 8800 personal computer - Closely tied to Microsoft because it marked the first computer the company designed a program for, the MITS Altair 8800 was one of the world's hottest gadgets 40 years ago. It was designed in 1974 but became a hot property after being featured on the cover of "Popular Electronics" magazine in January 1975. The Altair 8800 is widely recognized as the world's first personal computer.
Portable Cassette Recorder - The portable cassette recorder, a commonplace item for journalists and sleuths, was not invented in 1975 but grew to widespread popularity that year. Like personal drones are a hot gadget today, these devices were highly sought after 40 years ago. Director Francis Ford Coppola's 1974 Oscar-nominated thriller "The Conversation" helped bring portable listening devices like this to prominence.
Cray-1 supercomputer - In the 1970s, supercomputers were pretty much the top of the technological heap. Today, we carry powerful computers around in our pockets but this machine, the Cray-1 supercomputer, was announced in 1975 and would go on to be one of the world's most well-known of its kind after being installed at the Los Alamos National Laboratory in New Mexico. This complex device was named for its designer Seymour Cray.
Mars Viking 1 - Ever since space travel became a reality in the 1960s, people have been fascinated with visiting Mars. NASA's Viking program launched in 1975 and resulted in the first spacecraft to land on the red surface of Mars. The Mars Viking 1 lander (pictured) spent more than 6 years on the planet.
Pet Rock - From the pinnacle of 1975 technology to the lowest valley. Forty years ago, the Pet Rock was introduced by a California advertising executive and became a toy fad during the 1975 Christmas season. The Pet Rock is now a legend among marketing experts, showing that sometimes the simplest idea is the best. Pet Rock may not have been hot technology but it certainly was a hot item in its day. (In this screen shot from ebay.com, a seller has a Pet Rock from 1975 available for $8.95.)