I love the Internet. I grew up with it. From the first time I logged on to Prodigy, I was hooked. I remember the joy of going from a 9600 baud modem to the blazing fast 14.4. Back then, there wasn’t a lot to do on the Internet, but it was still exciting.
These days, I still love the Internet, but I hate it even more.
I love the free flow of information. I love being able to find anything I want, whenever I want. If I’m researching a book, I don’t have to wait until tomorrow to find the info I need. I can have it now. I hate phones, so the Internet allows me to talk to friends effortlessly via email. I love being able to research products and shop on-line and being able to find the name of that one movie, you know the one, that starred that guy who was in that show.
But I hate the ubiquity of it. Lately I’ve taken a break from Twitter. It began to overwhelm me. I felt like the protagonist in FEED. Just missing an hour of the feed, I mean Twitter, could result in pages upon pages of missed info. It made me feel guilty. I spent more time reading Twitter and less time doing the things that mattered.
Then there’s blogging and my RSS feeds and Reddit and Email and skyping and and and.
Over the last couple of months, I’ve said to myself that what I want more than anything is to take a cruise for a couple of weeks. Not because I necessarily love cruises, but because there’s no cell signal. No phones, email, internet. Just me, my thoughts, and my drink.
This morning, I logged back onto Twitter and immediately felt overwhelmed. So I shut it off.
As I ramble here on a Friday, I’m curious how you all handle being connected all the time. Is it a bane or a boon? How do you unplug when the information is everywhere?