10 technologies that should be extinct (but aren't)

These obsolete technologies didn't get the memo--maybe because someone wrote it on a typewriter and faxed it to them

6. Cash Registers

Ka-ching! Despite the emergence of computerized point-of-sale systems that can automatically track inventory, identify your top-selling products and best customers, and simplify back-end accounting, thousands of retail stores still rely on what's essentially a cigar box that can do third-grade math.

"The basics of the cash register haven't changed since it was invented 127 years ago," notes Tom Greenhaw, founder of CashierLive, a company that offers Web-based point-of-sale software. "While [it] might be powered by electricity now, it still can't tell you what your store has in stock (and it never will). Computers with point-of-sale software are expensive, which is why a majority of small retailers still stick with the dying cash register. But Web technology is finally coming to eliminate the cash register."

Basic cash registers--and really, cash itself--are analog dinosaurs in the digital jungle of financial transactions. It's time for them to check out.

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