Internetless - my thoughts on Paul Miller's investigation into an Internetless life
From my blog:
One of the experiments of the century is currently under way at The Verge office in New York. Paul Miller, one of the editors of The Verge, is undertaking the massive challenge of living without the Internet. That means no email, no up-to-the-minute news and no cute cat GIFs.
How could one live without this? Well, Paul has spent a few days hurriedly preparing, copying everything important to his computer and readying his flash drives. He spent his last three hours on-line live-streaming on YouTube whilst playing Minecraft and Starcraft; wouldn't want to waste precious time! In my eyes, he has decided to attempt this age's more difficult task - living without connectivity.
I was in a Google+ Hangout with him a week or so ago discussing the app he is working on with Justin, Phil and I. It was extremely nice talking to him and what he said about the way he writes was somewhat inspiring. But, now that I shan't be communicating with him again (well, maybe by phone) I think I'll miss his input to the project. He said several times he's not dying, just leaving the Internet for a while but, to someone with no other way of communicating with him, that is death - an unfortunately gruesome one.
It is not so much him dying, but the opportunity for wider communication. It is those who do not have direct contact with him that will suffer. Nilay said he is not dying and, as proof, he speaks to him every day, but this is not the case for many of us. For us, unfortunately, Paul Miller is dead in a way. I wish this wasn't the case, but it is. So, I ask you, how many people would you actually be able to talk to without the Internet?
I personally think I would find it impossible to go a whole year without the Internet. And here's why...
I need the Internet for the vast majority of things I do - work, not leisure, I mean. Writing for UltraLinx requires a constant open channel to the various tech news streams on-line to fish out stories to share and publishing them requires me uploading them directly to the site: surprisingly, I don't physically mail them. I don't work with anyone in my immediate area. My friends and workmates are everywhere: England, all over America, Italy and, if you include those I rely on for the latest news, pretty much everywhere else in the world. I would not be part of Team Boid without the Internet. I would not have had the chance to work with the Seven+ Project without the Internet. Dare I say I would not be who I am without the Internet?
As a small experiment of my own, I plan to follow in Paul's footsteps and leave the Internet for one day. On %some time this week, or this month at least; I really haven't decided% I will say goodbye to the Internet for a day. I'll turn everything onto airplane mode and shut myself out from the rest of the connected world.
I encourage you to join me - mainly so I don't miss any messages from you, but because it'd be better that way too. Let's all be alone together.
Good luck Paul! Goodbye world!