The first time I was asked to edit an audio track was in the late 1980s. That was on a Studer A807 reel to reel recorder on quarter inch tape, with a single sided razor blade, yellow china graph pencil and self-adhesive splicing tape. As I remember it was for an instructional video tape on how to repair and maintain vending machines, in French.
My grasp of the French language was poor at the best of times, where my limited school boy vocabulary was only just sufficient to navigate myself on foot around Paris. Imagine my horror at having to edit technical instructions in this foreign language, when at best I could just about manage to ask how to get to the nearest railway station.
Suffice to say, with script in hand I managed to complete the job for the client, who paid their invoice, so I guess that was a success. How things have changed with the likes of ProTools. I can’t imagine not having the power of a computer based digital audio workstation for daily production and editing, it seems unthinkable now.
I wonder how technology will have moved on another 30 years from now? Not that I plan to be still sitting in a studio editing by then!