The other day the hubby and I were talking about how we can seemingly no longer live without our computers. The topic came up when we heard the news that Brockhaus, a tradtional German encyclopedia, was discontinued. The last edition will see the light of day in 2008.
Okay we do work in the computer business and there are bigger geeks than us out there. Nevertheless the use of the internet dominates how our household gets information.
I don't remember the last time I've used an encyclopedia or looked something up without the use of the internet. Letters via snail mail? Negative. Daily newspaper or weekly magazines? Nope. The last time I have seen a bank teller? Ages ago. I can barely remember what she looks like. And then there are internet search engines.
I remember starting out with Web Crawler and Lycos then Dogpile (I loved the "go fetch" slogan) and MetaGer a German engine and then Google came along. I pretty much searched for everything online. In college I never shut down my computer. Instead I got up from heated discussion at the kitchen table in our dorm to storm into my room and check for info on the web.
We still do that today only we've now got a desktop and a laptop each. The other day when we were on our way up to my parents house and we were stuck in traffic, we almost took out our laptop to surf the web. We then decided against in and had a sandwich and a lovely conversation instead.
What I am getting at is that Google, Live Search, Wikipedia or the entire internet could be making us smart and stupid at the same time. Smart because we can get information really quick and stupid because who actually edits and filters all the information we consume?
What role does the internet play in your house and how often do you use your computers and for what?