Peter M Howard ::


13Jul2005 [myth]

Was in Paris with family when the bombs went off in London, having come through there from England the day before. The first we heard was a few hours after when Dad starting getting SMS News Alerts and concerned messages from back in Australia. There and then though, there was very little we could do... A few hours later when we got back to where we were staying I was able to put on a French news channel and get some updates...

But what struck me during the experience was how much I've become dependant on connectivity. As a tourist in the middle of a foreign-language-speaking city I was relatively stranded. Compare that with a couple of days later when there was the evacuation in Birmingham. Then I was chatting on IRC when people in England mentioned it; I was immediately able to flick to 24-hour tv news and look on the net where information was trickling through in real-time.

Of course, I already knew about connectivity, and about how hooked on it I've become (linked to the need for info-stimulation), but this really brought it home. And of course, such dis-connection is hardly even necessary anymore. With wifi or a web-enabled phone, and a few improvements in coverage, one could be anywhere and receive real-time updates, while interfacing with real-world people (there are already people on the chatrooms I use who login from phones while waiting for the train home for example).

And while some are complaining about the information/connectivity overload, I love it! I love the buzz that comes from being connected, globally, and in real-time... Far from overload, the easy access to any information makes me feel a little more on top of things -- as though nothing can happen without me knowing about it...

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