The scopes underwent some rather big changes over the years, even though they are doing essentially the same thing. They have more refinement today, and that makes them much easier to use. In addition there was the invention of the triggered sweep oscilloscope in 1946, which provided much more control. Because of the greater control, the oscilloscope was suddenly even more useful. Over the years, different manufacturers put their own spin on the scope, but the basic usage was always the same. They are still quite popular, even with the advent of the other types of oscilloscope on the market.