Monday, November 5, 2018

Life After Internet

Mary's internet is down.

This creates a problem for last minute gals like us because while we're good at so many things, if something goes wrong at the last minute...

A minute we were counting on to get a job done...

We're flummoxed.

Now I know you're thinking "Ruthy... this is a simple solution. Do stuff ahead of time."

And of course that's BRILLIANT!!!!! You guys are so smart!

But what happens to the best laid plans even when you're prepared?

That's what we're talking about today. Writers before the internet had a huge job/task to gather information. We're talking libraries... snail mail letters sent to experts, then waiting for the graciousness of a reply that might or might not come.

They had to hunt down bits and pieces of information. Tabulate and categorize them manually. By hand!!! And then keep it all straight as they wrote huge tomes about life... love... joy... and tragedy. And don't forget technical books and biographies and how-to books.

Anyone who has ever read an antique cookbook knows how things have changed. Those things were short on pictures and LONG on words....

Life is so different now. We are so blessed with information at our fingertips. It's crazy, really. Crazy convenient! But what happens when the internet shuts off?

WHAT IF THE INTERNET DISAPPEARED????

What would you do? How would you handle it? How would you revert back to pre-connected-life?

As writers we'd have a whole new level of work to do, and one that doesn't take place in a living room... it takes place in a car or by plane or by phone call, research, research, research.

But readers would feel this too. We all would because internet access isn't a convenience anymore. It's a necessity! Because we've grown dependent on it.

So here's the question for you, darlings... and I have a copy of "The Lawman's Holiday Wish" and "The Christmas Kite" duo for you if you leave a comment....




and a copy of "A Cowboy Christmas" my duo with the amazing Linda Goodnight... if you leave a comment.



What would you miss the most if the Internet disappeared?

Coffee's on!

Multi-published, award-winning inspirational author Ruth Logan Herne is so blessed to be doing
exactly what she always dreamed of doing: Writing sweet books of women empowerment, romance, faith, hope and love... you can find her on facebook or follow her on Twitter or just hang out here in Seekerville or the Yankee Belle Cafe. She loves to chat with writers and readers!


93 comments:

  1. On the one hand, I wouldn't spend mindless hours scrolling through Pinterest. On the other, I'd miss the faster way to communicate with family and friends without needing to pick up the phone.

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    1. Oh, such good points... The aimless stuff grabs us, doesn't it??? But the fast communication rocks. And for me, the research... the connectivity with my bosses at publishing houses. That's so much faster now!!!

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    2. I FINALLY GOT BACK ONLINE! I WAS READY TO PACK UP AND LEAVE MY HOME TO FIND INTERNET!!!

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  2. I'd not hear from family or see pictures of my great nieces and nephews.

    It would take me a long time to write. I'm forever googling when I need to know a piece of information and can instantly find out and then continue writing in five minutes or less.

    I was amazed at a Bridal Shower a month ago when the groom did not know how to read cursive. The younger generation would never survive.

    Perhaps the kids I taught back in the 80's would hopefully remember how to use the old fashioned card catalog. I would take my class to the library every few months and teach them how to use it. then I would let them check out books that stayed in the classroom for them to enjoy when they got their work done. I taught K4 through 4th grade. The Librarians in the small town were impressed that I would do this with them.
    Have a great day. I get to go to the dentist

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    1. Good teeth are crucial!!!!

      I agree, we lose touch more easily without Internet. But the cursive thing... I love that schools are going back to it now. There is something intelligent about being able to think/read/write like scribes of old. I think it aids our brain development. If it's never challenged, why would it stretch to receive new data?

      Imagine if the Greeks had kept all that wisdom to themselves. Or if the men from the far East never traveled. Or if explorers didn't explore?

      Learning and stretching make us smarter. I think it's just part of the process.

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    2. mY LIBRARY'S online catalogue is currently OFFLINE!

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  3. I have a question. My friend took a picture off her TV of a commercial for authors who want to be published call an 800 number. This is one I have never heard of Christian Faith.

    I'm a little Leary of any publisher who advertises on TV and not with a group of writers. Would this be worth calling the number? I am not sure if I'm ready to be published any way. I'm improving but don't believe I'm quite to that step.

    What are your thoughts on this?

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    1. Like you, I'm always leary of any publisher who needs to advertise. This isn't how legitimate publishers find their clients.

      So, in the spirit of Ruthy's post, I Googled them (now isn't that ironic?)

      It took a bit of searching, but I finally found (in the FAQ's) that there is a cost to the author if their book is accepted by the publisher. That means they are what we used to call a "vanity press."

      That doesn't mean they're bad, but it's an option most authors avoid. Why pay a publisher to publish your book when the publisher should be paying you?

      My advice is to avoid them. :-)

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    2. Ditto what Jan said. There are no shortcuts in this business. Ever. And why hire someone to do something you can do yourself? But the trick with indie publishing is that if the work isn't your best, or just plain wonderful, you only get one chance to make a good first impression on readers...

      I'm so glad indie publishing wasn't a thing when I started. I was so full of myself I KNOW I would have published stuff before I was ready... because I thought I was ready.

      I'd avoid them, Wilani.

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    3. I' sure it's a scam, Wilani. They'd probably just publish your book online only you can do that free...while this company will charge you for handling, editing, who knows what all.

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  4. We've joked that our kids will never know the frustration comes with hours or days of trying to figure out who sang that song you just heard or what movie you know that guy from the commercial in. Instant information is definitely addictive.

    I would miss the easy connection with out-of-town family and friends, but I hope that without the imagined anonymity of social media, some of the decorum of civil conversation might return. But that might be wishful thinking :)

    Great post!

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    1. Civil discourse? I MISS THAT!!!!

      :)

      And yes, it's amazing how many times people ask a question and I say "If only someone had a smart phone..." Which (of course) they all have.

      Do you know how many arguments have been thwarted because people can access info so quickly? SWEET!!!

      Except it does seem that we need to get out so many arguments/day and now we just do it on social media.

      Which means we're airing dirty laundry.

      Oh, our grandmothers would be so incensed!

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    2. Glynis, not only that, I can no longer exaggerate. They say, "Wow, really?" And start googling on their phone and say, "Nope, that's wrong, here's what it really is."

      I miss out on a lot of fun that way. :(

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  5. I would miss the instant connection to family and would also really miss being in contact with all the friends I've made from Seekerville!

    Please put me in the drawing!

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    1. You're in, sweet thing! And that's such a good point. We've created a writers and readers community that stretches across borders so that would be a huge loss.... WE LOVE OUR VILLAGERS!!!!

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  6. I have always been glad that I didn't start writing until after the internet became easy to use. I haven't sent hard copies of anything to my publishers since my first book or two - everything has switched over to digital.

    Not to mention the ease of research with the internet! I've tried doing research at our public library, but they have purged their collection...no more real history books, no more literature... Don't get me started - it makes me so mad. :-(

    And even though I loved my Selectric typewriter in college, my computer keyboard is MUCH faster.

    On the other hand, sometimes I think it would be wonderful to go back to the DBI (days before internet). I talked to a rancher at a book signing recently who told me he didn't own a computer, didn't want access to one, and didn't intend to ever go that route.

    He told me this while he was holding my business card...with my email address and website on it.

    When I get new business cards made, I'm going to include my PO Box address. I know there are more readers like him out there!

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    1. Jan, that's such a good idea! I expect there are more of his ilk in the West.... and now I'm going to put him in a book, I know just which one...

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    2. Hi. I don't think I'd be a writer without computers. the internet is a separate issue, but the way I write, revising over and over, I couldn't do that could I? On a typewriter? Wow, the mind boggles.

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  7. I would miss my connection to friends.

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    1. Caryl, me too. And that brings me to the realization that all my best friends live five states away from me. That might be a bad thing!!!

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    2. Or rather, that might say a lot about me.

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  8. I think it's time to bring back snail mail, written in cursive.

    It will be our own secret code...

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    1. I am waiting for the day that cursive is considered a secret code. Like the Apache code talkers, remember that? Their language was such a mystery that could be used as an unbreakable code? Cursive is next.
      Not to mention no one can read our founding documents, the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, because of the cursive.
      That's actually a cool idea for a dystopian book. Someone 'cracks the code' of the original Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, the Emancipation Proclamation...and realizes what they originally meant and what unscrupulous people are now saying they meant!!! We've lost all the true meaning.

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    2. Two of my kids can hardly read cursive! So I know exactly when they quit teaching it: between kids one and two.

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  9. Like Yubangi... Do you guys remember that? Or Double talk? How you mix up the words to code so that others don't know what you're saying? We did that in 7th and 8th grade....

    Hidda Gow Idda Gare Yidda Gou?

    "How are you" in Double talk.....

    Hibow Ibare Yibou?

    How are you in "Yubangi".

    Just another useless bit of information from yours truly.

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    1. Yubangi? Double talk?

      It must have been a New York thing. :-)

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    2. I remember Pig Latin. Beyond that, nope, I've never heard of these, Ruthy....that means it would work if you wanted to talk in code around me.

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  10. First of all, poor Mary! That's tough.

    Second of all, I think I would miss the ease of connecting with friends online, through email, through apps like Discord. I would miss all of it, but the connecting with people would be the hardest. :)

    Please enter me for that drawing, Ruthy!

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    1. She is not happy.... Still can't get connected and it's not an outage, it's her stuff and it's so hard to troubleshoot all that! I'm entering you and I think most of us enjoy that connection to family and friends... so we don't get careless with busy lives!

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    2. I felt like a Who from Whoville in Horton Hears a Who.
      I am here. I am HERE. I AM HERE!!!!!!!!!!

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    3. Awww, Mary, that is truly stressful. I'm so glad you are HEEERRREEE! I'm praying today that God helps you make up the lost time today.

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  11. Poor Mary! I just texted her and still no answers about why it’s out. Ruthy, thanks for pinch hitting!! With no internet, I most miss emails with my Seeker buds.

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    1. You guys are like my lifeline to sanity, so yes... I'm with you there. You guys LET ME TALK.

      Right there makes you amazing! :)

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    2. I was trying to name a heroine last night in my book. Something Danish. I HAVE NO INTERNET! I CAN'T GOOGLE DANISH SURNAMES. I can't name my characters without the internet.
      They'd all be named Bob Moore, Joe Wilson, Andy Brown.

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    3. Ilsa.

      Or Elsa

      Or Emy (Eeeemeee like we'd say Amy)

      Brigid

      Carolyn

      From,

      Helpful Friend

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    4. LOL, Mary! Yes. We depend on it for just about everything!

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  12. Lee-Ann B here: I was just telling my girls the other day that we didn't have computers in our house until I was in Grade 9! And no cell phone until I was 21. LOL We had commodore 64 as our classroom computer. Only wealthy business people had those massive portable phones with antenna, and I used card catalogues to do research for all of my high school papers. Life was so much simpler then. :) We are internet free during the summer months as we spend most of the time camping. Can't say that I miss much when we're gone...I get more reading and family time in without it. Sorry that Mary's internet is down. That sucks when you're on a deadline...Here's hoping that it will be up and running soon!

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    1. ...you had computers in your elementary school? *feeling very old* LOL!

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    2. Hahahahahahah!

      I thought the same thing, LOL! I worked in an office at Kodak right outside the COMPUTER ROOM. The room was huge... Like the size of a three car garage.... and it housed ONE COMPUTER that was the size of a tractor trailer without the cab. And it had to kept at optimum temperature and humidity....

      Now we carry them in our pockets and gleefully call them phones. :)

      We used to disconnect the TV when our kids were little every summer. Campfires at night and farm work and sports. A lot of sandwiches. :)

      But it kept them from thinking they had to watch TV all the time. Which is similar to kids with phones these days!

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    3. I was writing for about five years (I had a computer) without the internet. I got MORE done then. The internet is a major time sink. (I LOVE IT!)

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    4. I remember when my CHILDREN got a computer at school. And no internet, just a computer. They were such a mystery.

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    5. Hahaha. You ladies crack me up. I'm an 80s kid through and through. (Lee-Ann B) And none of you are old. ;)

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    6. Well, of course we're not OLD.

      Old is our age plus twenty years. So we've got a ways to go! ;)

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    7. Yes, Ruthy! I remember the computer ROOMS! And floppy disks that were so frustrating!

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  13. I recently found out! My internet was out for almost a week before they could get a service tech out to the boonies to fix it. And since we do streaming tv, no internet means no tv. So my husband borrowed the 10-disk DVD set of Band of Brothers and we watched a few every night, I got a lot of writing done without FB and email to distract me. And I did a lot more cooking (go figure). Overall, it was really a nice week. But I think hubby handled it better than I did (except for the no tv part).

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    1. Oh, I can totally see this. And it's amazing how we adapt (does that mean we've got a better chance than the dinos????) as needed, but it can make us GRUMPY.

      Grumpy isn't fun or healthy.

      But it happens. LeAnne, I love the Band of Brothers... Oh my stars, what a glimpse of real life that is.

      You rock.

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  14. Hi Ruth:

    Oy vey!

    I'm reluctant to say this but you're beginning to talk like an old person!!!

    And yes, I'm learning what that is from personal experience.

    No internet? Big deal. I've got years of knowing how to live without the interent.

    Over 20 years ago I came up with a maxim:

    "Every time saving and labor saving device creates more work and steals more of your free time."

    Whenever time is saved they drop more work on you. Cell phones? The job will call any time day or night and even while on vacation. Personal computers? Goodbye secretaries even top executives must now type their own work. Desktop publishing? Now they require six or seven revisions because it can be done.

    Parkinson's Law: "work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion".

    Actually the work expands with interest! More work than what was saved!

    The one great truth in all times:

    Stop and smell the roses.

    Price of ebooks comes down? Yes, but I'm reading the same number of books as before and spending just as much money. However, my TBR pile is growing like Topsy.

    Speaking of saving money, I saved plenty by buying "The Sound of Distant Thunder" while it is on sale this month and I'm loving the increased conflict of setting an Amish romance at the start of the Civil War. Excellent!

    I've met both you and Linda Goodnight and would love to win your duo book.

    "The more things change, the more they stay the same…only it becomes harder to see the similarity."

    Vince

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    1. Oh, Vince, you are so right! And I'll shelve the old person talk for a while. But thanks for POINTING IT OUT.

      Ay yi yi.

      Don't you just love Linda Goodnight???? I do! I'm putting your name into the cat dish right now.

      And your e-book wisdom is being proven by Author Earnings stats and argued by traditional publishing.... which makes it interesting to be in the middle.

      And don't you love The Sound of Distant Thunder? I got to read it early, and it's beautiful!!!

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  15. .
    "Mary without the internet is like Shakespeare without a typewriter."

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    1. mawahahahahahahahah.....
      - DebH

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  16. I would definitely suffer withdrawal if my internet disappeared for any length of time...but I sure would get more words written! :)

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    1. I hear you, girlfriend... but then we'd have to fact check in other ways and we'd end up spending more time doing that than we're wasting on Pinterest or facebook or Twitter or Instagram or....

      OH MY STARS!!! TIME-SUCK!!!

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  17. Fascinating topic! Although my website is back up, it was just down for nearly 3 weeks. This includes my blog. At first I really missed the interaction with my blog viewers, but then I discovered it was a Godly intervention because it gave me time to think, get out of a rut I didn't know I was in, and to plan. Must say, I am glad to be back on line!

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    1. Elaine, you perfectly described the dilemma... and the reality. It feels tortuous at first but then you realize you actually lived quite well without it! And yet, we're happy to reconnect again.

      Aren't we the odd ducks????

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  18. I'd miss being able to Google any question my curious daughter asks me!

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    1. Yes... me, too. When I'm teaching little ones it's awesome to have that knowledge at my fingertips. And high school homework? Hello, Khan Academy!!!

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  19. Hhhhmm, good question. I guess I would miss google the most. I ask it everything under the sun. I'm sure I would get soooo much accomplished without it. :)

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    1. I go to Wikipedia all the time for info.

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  20. I'd like to think mostly I would miss the connections with friends and family, but in all honesty, I do way more than that online. I am a sucker for looking up a recipe on pinterest to try something different. And this month, I am addicted to updating my word count on the nanowrimo site. ;-)

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  21. Easy communication is what I would miss. Getting answers the same day.

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  22. I would miss the instant connection to family & friends that live far away. I would waste less time on Facebook, but maybe spend more time printing pictures to mail to relatives, so does that really save a lot of time? I would definitely miss Google for searches for...everything! :)

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    1. The tricky thing is, so many sites online have info I consider to be at my fingertips. Like......the phone number for the internet repair people. So I can't call them! But I found it! It's just harder.

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  23. I would miss the connection I have with my favorite authors and the ability to read books on my Kindle, Kindle app and iPad.....though I may not miss giving up the electronic medical records at work.....

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    1. Oh, I hadn't thought of downloading books instantly on my Kindle. Yes, I would miss that!

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  24. I would miss the accountability and connection I have with all my writer friends and fans.

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  25. I managed to let the Seekers know using my phone but I barely know how to use the stupid thing. (The stupid thing is a smart phone...I take forever to type with one finger!).
    So I barely managed to email them and Ruthy figured it out and came through here. GOD BLESS YOU RUTHY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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    1. Mary, I know you miss your stupid phone. :) Maybe someday you'll get used to the new one.

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  26. I would miss the Internet, but having grown up without it I could cope - eventually.

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    1. It would definitely be like old times!

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    2. Mary, you're right. We would adjust...although I wouldn't be happy! :)

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  27. I would mis the cool blog posts I get in my email and instant access to information. My hubby and I will questions a fact or wonder the actor is in a movie we are watching. He grabs his phone and googles it. Come to think of it I might not miss that. I could insist no being right and it would be to inconvenient to check it out. :)

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    1. LOL, Jubliee! That's so true. We're always looking up things to find out which one of us is right. hahaha

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    2. I'm right there with you, girls! Always checking facts on my phone. :)

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  28. I would miss Google - I Google everything. And I would miss the ease of research that we have today.

    Please enter me in the drawing!

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    1. Edwina, we're so spoiled, aren't we. I can't imagine having to go to the library every time I wanted to look up something!

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    2. I even use my phone in place of a dictionary! :(

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  29. I'm convinced that I could have finished college a year earlier if computers and word processors had been invented earlier! Anyone remember the old manual typewriters/carbon copies/etc. And we'd spend hours typing up our research papers, etc. get to the bottom of a page, make a mistake that couldn't be fixed, and have to type the whole thing over. There were quite a few all-nighters pulled in those days! And Google in those days was a set of encyclopedias that filled up an entire bookshelf in your home if you were lucky enough to have a set. Then you had to buy updates every few years, or trek to the library to find information. We're spoiled, people! Or put another way, we're spoiled people.

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    1. I remember carbon copies...and encyclopedias. I still have a set of World Book Encyclopedia. Just can't part with them. Call me old fashion!

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    2. Hi Winnie:

      I really enjoyed reading your comments. Years after I graduated from college I would have said the same thing about electric typewriters with a correction ribbon and ball typing head! But then again everyone was in the same boat and they did grade on a curve so it evened out.

      Today's text generation can't spell or write in complete sentences. More and more the essay part of exams are being dropped. Indeed, it seems to me that the smarter our tools get, the dumber we get.

      Perhaps Newton's Third law, ("For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.") also applies to human technological progress.

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    3. Good points, Vince. I think you're right!

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    4. Vince, electric typewriters were starting to show up when I was in high school, but they were still a pain compared to word processing programs. I agree that spelling and writing skills are going downhill.

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  30. I'd miss connecting with readers and writers the most.

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    1. So true, Toni! I love how we can chat on social media, on blogs, and via email. We're spoiled! But in a good way!

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  31. If the Internet disappeared, I would miss being able to keep in touch with family and friends who live far away.
    A letter sent by "regular" mail could take a week but email is instant.
    Janet E.
    von1janet(at)gmail(dot)com

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    1. Like you, Janet, I love the speed of wifi!

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  32. If the Internet disappeared....I wouldn't be able to instantly see what books are new; I wouldn't be able to read all of the blogs that are now a part of our culture; I wouldn't be able to have, at my fingertips, information that I don't know. I.WOULD.NOt.SEE.SEEKERVILLE.EVERY.DAY!!

    Reference was one of my job descriptions as a librarian but I needed encyclopedias, dictionaries, thesauruses, and numerous other bound volumes to answer the questions of patrons. Yes, I confess, I am an Internet junkie!

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  33. I would miss connecting to relatives and friends quickly.
    Guppy isn't being taught cursive at school, but during his birthday he got cards from the Grandmas - written in cursive. He was frustrated that he needed my help to read the cards, so he asked me to teach him cursive. We've been working on it for about a week now and he's very excited to learn it. He can't wait to be able to write Grammy a note in cursive to show off his new skill.
    I'd miss Seekerville - I've been missing it because I haven't been able to be online as much since moving home to Colorado, so I've been a tad disconnected anyway. I sure miss being around here more often. *sigh*

    DebH

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