The Double Edge Of The World Wide Web

the double edge of the world wide web
The world is too much with us, late and soon;
Getting and spending we lay waste to our powers;
 Little we see in Nature that is ours;
We have given our hearts away . . .
                                                                        William Wordsworth, published 1807

This sonnet was written in the early 1800s as a lament by William Wordsworth for changes brought about by the Industrial Revolution. I suspect if he could take a peek at how the Internet has changed the whole planet, he might be left speechless. Just as sophisticated video conferencing can bring us face-to-face with family, friends, and business colleagues who live anywhere, so too does it bring us on-site videos of devastation from war in real-time. It’s a painful tradeoff. We have given our hearts away to the immediacy of all info/all the time. The phenomenon has created some nostalgia for pre-Internet life as we knew it. It has also created very serious security issues.

There Is Now A Book: 100 Things We Have Lost To The Internet, Pamela Paul

You may have seen her name. She co-authored How To Raise A Reader and Parenting, Inc. This is not a heavy read, but some of the 100 things she notes we have lost to the Internet may give you pause; our lives are so intense now. Take a look at a few.

  • Boredom. “Remember boredom? … there is no more boredom. There are no empty moments and the mere thought of it—seems absurd …There’s a reason people have their most exciting and original thoughts in the shower. Our minds start to wander and we follow. You have to turn off the input to generate output. But the input never stops.”
  • Private Humiliation. “Before everyone carried around a camera, you could walk straight into a street pole and know that only three people saw…even as you stumbled and tried to somehow make it look like you did it on purpose. What we can’t do anymore…is keep anything to ourselves and let the moment pass undocumented.”
  • Wondering About The Weather. “With minute-by-minute changes in precipitation from light drizzle to a stormy mix, forecast ten days out by zip code, one is awash in a mesmerizing level of detail about one’s current meteorological position at all times of the day. There is no excuse not to be prepared for every possible outcome.”

There Will Be No Going Back

I read through her topics, grinning at some, frowning at others. As I said earlier, it’s a pretty quick read. But it did get me to think about some things, like, what can we expect next? No one guessed how making the Internet widely available would so radically change every aspect of life as we know it. I’m guessing every generation thinks that while they love the ease of their newly higher-tech lives, they don’t think they can stand any more innovations. But innovation will come relentlessly, requiring all of us to acknowledge it and learn it and apply it to everyday procedures.

In Today’s Dangerous Times, I Am Grateful For Technology

Our computers. We love them and we hate them. Before that, it was our helpful but sometimes complicated phone systems. We learn and we adapt. The Internet is here to stay. Crime has been with us always. Crime through the Internet is now as common as crime if you leave your car unlocked. Once we admit that cybercrime is a daily issue, then we can add fighting cybercrime to our daily responsibilities. In business, that usually means hiring IT experts who know what the current cyber threats are and also know how to secure a business network against them.

If you have questions about the Internet, business networks, cybercrime, or cybersecurity—give us a call at Aptica. We work hard to stay on the leading edge of security and prevention. We can educate you and your employees on how to join the fight.

Jason Newburg, 260.243.5100, ext 2101, is the founder and owner of Aptica LLC. This IT management and support company has been serving small to medium-sized businesses for 20 years in the region that includes Angola, South Bend, and Fort Wayne, IN, Battle Creek, MI, and Toledo OH.

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