Before and After: Internet Service Changed Us

If you take just a few moments and jump in a time machine with me we can go back to the way things were in the 1970ís and 1980ís before Internet service was second nature to us.† The World was a completely different place; full of interesting challenges that we didnít even realize were challenges back then, they were just the way life was.† It wasnít until recently that we could realize just how primitive we actually were back in the day.† Here are 10 great examples of how ancient our ways were:

  1. How we used to send a message to someone Ė In the 1970ís we had these things called pens, papers, envelopes, and stamps.† We would actually pick up a pen and with our own hand, write words on a piece of paper.† After we got done doing that we would pick up that same pen and write a from AND a to address on the front of an envelope.† We then inserted the paper we just wrote on into the envelope, sealed the envelope, put a stamp on it, and then we WALKED it to a mail drop box.† Whew!† Iím exhausted just thinking about it.† Now, with our Internet service we simply fire up the computer, type a quick note in our favorite email application, and send it to as many people we want with a click of the mouse.
  2. How we talked to people in different cities Ė Back in the 1980ís we used to use this apparatus that was called an analog telephone which was a device whose base had numbered buttons on it, a handset with a microphone and a speaker, a springy cord that connected the handset to the base, and all of this was attached to the wall with an actual wire connecting it to a system of even more telephone equipment.† When we wanted to talk to someone that wasnít in the same room as us we picked up the handset, usually pushed 10 buttons (sometimes MORE), and then talked directly into the handset making sure to not walk too far away as we were still attached to the wall via different cords.† Now, with our Internet service, we simply open up Skype, click on a personís name, and as soon as they answer we start freely talking over our slick and crystal clear digital connection.
  3. How we met with clients Ė Back in the day when we needed to meet with a client we would coordinate schedules over the phone (see #2), make travel arrangements, and then actually physically find a way to get into the same room with our client.† This usually involved several hours of travel, some not-so-great airplane food, and at least a one-night stay in a garden-variety hotel.† Now, we shoot a quick email and jump online for a web conference.† We can literally have a meeting with our clients whenever we want thanks to our Internet service and video conferencing.
  4. How we kept track of people we wanted to contact again.† In the 1980ís we had these things called day planners and organizers, which were way fancier than those old-fashioned address books we used in the 1970ís.† Basically, we would write someoneís name, title, address, and phone number on a nice sheet of paper in our planner and/or address book.† When we wanted to find someone we knew we looked them up by an alphabetical index we had in our address book.† If we just wanted a service and couldnít remember the name then we got to read through several pages in our book.† Now thanks to our Internet service we simply connect to all our business contacts via LinkedIn and our friends via FaceBook.† We can easily find out who we know and contact them via Skype, IM, or any other way we want to.
  5. How we told office gossip.† So before the invention of bottled water we used to have these machines called water fountains that spewed water out when you pushed a button that you could then drink for your own refreshment.† We used to gather around this water fountain and discuss who was lying to whom and various other important office intel.† Now thanks to the use of our Internet service we donít even have to talk to people a few feet away.† We just open up our instant messenger application and chat away.† More progressive companies use social networks like yammer to keep everyone in the know.
  6. How we found local businesses.† In the 1970ís and 1980ís if we needed say a plumber to come to our home to fix a leaky pipe we would get out this huge yellow book that the phone company printed every year called the Yellow Pages.† It weighed quite a bit and made a heck of a doorstop.† It had an alphabetical index as well so we could look up P for plumber and then eventually find names of local businesses to call (see #2).† Now, thanks to our Internet service we can jump online and use Google to find the name of several local plumbers that can service our home (we may even be able to schedule them to come out to the house all online).
  7. How we got our college degrees.† So in the 1970ís and 1980ís when we wanted to get a college degree we would apply for a college (in writing see #1) and then when we got accepted we would physically walk to our classes every day and sit in class listening to the professorís boring lectures.† We did this over and over every day for 2 or 4 years depending on the degree we were getting.† Now with our Internet service we can get our college degrees from the comfort of our own homes and in our pajamas.† We just get on our computer and the learning begins (video conference for class lectures #3, ask questions via Skype #2, and then chat #5 with our fellow classmates).
  8. How we watched television or saw a movie.† In the 1970ís and 1980ís we used to wait with anticipation for our favorite TV shows to come on network television and we were devastated if we had a conflicting appointment and couldnít catch the latest episode because it meant we had to wait for a re-run which could take months.† Now, thanks to our internet service we can over book ourselves, skip our shows, and just go to hulu.com or Netflix.com and see the TV show or movie we want on demand (aka any time).
  9. How we used to shop for novelty items.† We used to receive catalogs from different vendors via the USPS mail (see #1).† In these catalogs we could flip through the pages and find interesting items that we couldnít dream of purchasing at our local department stores.† We could then fill out the form attached to the catalog and mail in our order (see #1) along with a hand-written check (an antiquated form of payment).† Sometimes we could pick up the phone (see #2) and call the company to place an order using our credit card (an almost antiquated form of payment).† Now thanks to our Internet service we can get online and search Google for even the craziest of items and then order it all online and pay using our friendly Paypal account so that we donít even have to remember our credit card number anymore.
  10. How we met our significant others.† We used to have to try an find women or men that we were interested in dating by physically going out of our home and meeting them in bars, gyms, or other places where people congregate.† We would have to look them in the eye and risk being rejected if they didnít like what they saw standing before them.† Now thanks to our Internet service we can date online via sites like Match.com and be whoever we want to be without any fear of rejection or attachments to reality (until we decide to take the relationship offline if ever).

So as you can now see from just this quick review in the 1970ís and 1980ís we had it pretty rough.† Thankfully now that we have our Internet service we donít have to deal with such mundane and ridiculous issues as having to look a person in the eye when we talk to them or run the risk of getting any germs by shaking their hands.† Thank goodness!† So while I am sort of poking fun at all of our advances if you ask me what I would change or like to go back to doing the old way and Iíll tell you ABSOLUTELY NOTHING!

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One Response to Before and After: Internet Service Changed Us

  1. Uraye says:

    You are absolutely right, but my stepson did not believe this when I showed this to him.

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