Last week I was talking to a coworker of mine and somehow the conversation moved towards the possibility of the internet disappearing. She came out and asked me what I would do if the internet was gone. It’s an interesting question to think about since the Internet has become such an important part of our lives. I know some people do without it, but personally, I think it would be difficult. Just think of all the things you encounter that require visiting a website for more information, or need an email address to register for something. At least in my life, I think I’d run into issues rather quickly. Firstly, I probably wouldn’t have a job, since basically I make stuff to put on the Internet. Secondly, I’d probably have much more free time, given that a large portion of my day is spent in front of a computer (working and playing). It would definitely be interesting, and I can probably say that I’d be spending my time in many different ways.
During the conversation where this came up, I kind of turned the question around, and asked what would happen if any technology were to suddenly disappear. What if we didn’t have cars to drive around? There would obviously be some difficulty getting from place to place, but we probably wouldn’t be stranded since we have some history to look back on without cars. I think the same thing would go for the Internet. We haven’t always had it, so we could obviously do without it. We’d just need to remember how things got done without bits and bytes flying through space. Things would be difficult at first, but we’d figure out how to get by. Some people would probably have an easier time than others if they’ve lived without a certain technology, or had been trained on doing their job before a certain technology existed. I think maybe the point I was making is that we’ll learn to adapt with what we have. I think this coworker was trying to get at how much people rely on the Internet for everything these days, but I think the argument could be made reliance on just about any advancement in technology. What happens if something disappears? We deal with it, and figure out another way to get by. At the very least it’s an interesting thing to think about as you move through your day. How many places do you rely on the internet to get things done?