This past week I finally got around to organizing yet another part of my life. This time it was my internet bookmarks; not the browser bookmarks as I had done that previously but more specifically the once I had on del.icio.us. I noticed in December that his site was often down and remains so! This is very odd for one of the most popular sites of the 2.0 web. They also disabled the export function with a note saying it put too much strain on their servers!!
It seems that in the past year I have attended more kid parties than actual parties. Well, I take that back, we have had a few gatherings here at our place which I would not consider a “party” as normally considered. Rather, they were much more of a gathering. And as it turns out everyone has kids.
This past weekend was no exception. We attended a birthday party for a two year old and I got to talking with one of the guests who was the same age as me. He works for a large internet company and I had actually used his software. This lead to a discussion on the internet as a whole and I am amazed by how fast things have changed and how many years passed since we all hopped online.
There has been an ongoing debate in the past few years about what the internet does to our brains. Some would argue that due to the sheer volume of information we consume on a daily basis we are actually becoming smarter. While the other opinion is that we have lost the ability to concentrate due to the constant e-mails, messages and scrolling sidebars which distract us.
As far as I can tell, this issue was first really brought to light in the article, “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” from The Atlantic. Recently a counter article from the same publication argues that “Google Makes Us Cocky, Not Stupid.”
For the first time in my life, I feel as though I am truly addicted to something. Yet, I’m a bit confused on the nature of this addiction and thus feel the need to write in the hopes of getting it sorted out.
This monster is always on, always there continually calling me to it. It is present in my personal life, my work life and even if I break away I can only do so for minutes at the time. What is worse is that I am not alone. With a regular addiction, perhaps I could pull away from my fellow sufferers but it appears that the whole world is tapping into this menace.
I find it hard to believe that it has been 13 years already since the internet became mainstream. However, in those thirteen years I have only come across a few applications that I have found extremely useful. First a brief history.
I first started using a computer around age 13 on an Apple 2C to catalog my movie and CD collection in a simple database. I also kept a journal in the word processor which makes for some very interesting reading now.