Thanks to Al Gore (Tim Berners-Lee) We Can Make Our Eyes Go Crosseyed Deliberately and Be Fine With It

I’ll own up to the truth. I’m part of the generation whose biggest accomplishment so far is being the first to take the Internet for granted. Why wouldn’t I be able to get movies delivered to my mailbox without having to get up? Just use Netflix. Why would anyone think that they can’t find out the winner of the 1923 Tour De France? Look it up on Wikipedia. Why can’t I create a persona and use it to buy fake money? There’s such a thing called Second Life that allows me to do just that.

These questions would have seemed preposterous only decades ago. Movies were hardly portable, you would have had to lug around encyclopedias to know esoteric trivia like the winner of the 1923 Tour De France, and it’s highly possible that you could have been sent in for a mental reevaluation or incarcerated if you mentioned that you were doing something like making a new virtual you and spending money on nothing.

I’m not saying that those three examples are prime indicators of how revolutionary and invaluable the Internet is, but there are the glaring advantages of having instant access to so much knowledge that it would make my head spin if I wasn’t so jaded. Still, lying in bed tonight I thought that I needed something to extol. Starting this blog was easy and I knew that I’d find something every day that I’d appreciate, but it took me quite awhile to realize how fortunate we all are to have this limitless source at our fingertips.

When I was in Mexico on a study abroad trip earlier this summer, we visited a newspaper business that had only two delivery boys and each had to hop on their motorbikes and take four or five hours to circulate the papers. Sometimes I’m afraid that with the overwhelming ease of syndication on the Internet that jobs like those will vanish and people will eventually sequester themselves inside for most of their lives and feed off their computers.

In other words, I love what my Mac can do for me now, but I think we’re in the golden age and no one can really tell for sure if we’re headed in the right direction. What do you think?

Published in: on July 26, 2008 at 6:23 am  Leave a Comment  

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