Google wants to bring the circular ads that filled out the Sunday paper into the Internet age, Bloomberg reports, and I couldn't be happier about it. I loved the old electronics ads of the Sunday Paper Era. They provided a weekly snapshot of the state of the computer revolution in print, or so it seemed to me.
When my dad brought in The Columbian, our local newspaper, I used to glance at the front page and then snatch up the sports section. Sure, the coverage was skimpy, often little more than AP cutups, but I wasn't really interested in a Grantland-deep dive. I was usually after the ad on the back of the sports section, which (though I'm sure this isn't technically true) was always placed by Fry's, the electronics giant.
This ad was a publication of its own, I was sure. It had a logic! They knew just how to tease me, especially at the low-end of the price range. There'd be some astoundingly cheap memory stick or stick of RAM. Sometimes, with a mail-in rebate they would even advertise FREE STUFF. And while looking for the deal my middle school self could make, I'd check out the monitors and hard drives, the stereo equipment, the latest PC games. I savored the Fry's ad in all its overcrowded glory, not least because the Fry's ad gave me warm and fuzzy memories of paging through the ads in Computer Shopper as if it were the September issue of Vogue. Even better, thanks to Moore's Law, Fry's prices for the same equipment were always falling.