Sunday, February 25, 2018

Disconnect from the Internet? Unheard of!

Ask anyone older than 35 years old about what life was like before the age of easy internet access. In the 1980's, the most advanced technology available was rudimentary e-mail, Fidonet, Newsgroups, and pagers. Cellular telephones that could fit into your back pocket were pure fantasy. We had the huge Motorola bag phone back then - and it cost $5-6K to get one.

One could imagine a busy executive, wiping the cocaine residue from his nose and gingerly hefting up the gigantic cell phone while driving his car. Dial-up internet didn't come into focus until the early 1990's and even that was terrible.

If you are 30 and older, the generation who grew up without this easy internet access -- count yourself in the tiny population of "old folks". To be fair, I don't count middle age to be anything until you hit mid-to late 40's. The distractions of today's applications are continuous and endless. They are meant to capture your attention for longer and longer periods. Back in the early 2000's I wrote about the Crackberry and how using these devices fueled information addiction. That blinking red light that told you someone left a message - and if it meant reading the message at 3 in the morning, you'd do it.

There is value in staying connected to others, but as long as this connectivity doesn't interfere with your everyday life. Too often, I see couples sitting with their phones out, at dinner, ignoring each other while reading news feeds.

I believe in moderation, as long as what you do doesn't impact others or yourself negatively.

To WPGCAMERAMAN: I'll be creating a twitter account next month for lurking and DM's. I'll ping you in late March when I'm ready to bring it back.