There’s an Armageddon type scenario that has been written about in science fiction where every modern piece of tech in the modern world shuts down. In these types of alternate imagined realities, electricity sources disappear catapulting us back to the stone age. The reality is that this will probably never happen. It is, however, possible theoretically that one day the internet might disappear. Why would this happen? It would likely be the result of a massive scale cyber attack by a very powerful group of hackers. Think Anonymous type individuals – fifteen to twenty-something year olds with laptops. Is it possible that they could kill the world wide web as we know it? It’s highly unlikely, but experts believe that yes, in the future, this could be a possibility.
As such, it is useful and perhaps even interesting to consider what would happen if the tech that we rely on today disappeared and what the world would be like without it. As you’re about to discover, things would be very different. In some cases life would be better and in others far worse.
How Fast Life Moves
Time, comparatively speaking, is actually moving faster than it did ten, twenty or thirty years ago. The reason for this is simple. Tech allows us to speed through processes that we would otherwise have to wait around for and this is true in virtually every business model. In the past everything was manual. If you were running a hotel, you had to input guests manually, their preferences and handle sales. These days all that and much more can be combined into one easy package using software from sites like mingus-software.com. This is beneficial for the business and the customer. The business owner gets a more efficient process in their company model and the customer? They just get their services faster and can buy products easier. If you look at the basic system of e-commerce online, this is automation at its best. Unless something goes wrong, you’re not dealing with a human at any point during your Amazon purchase. You see what you want, you pay the money, you buy it and it most likely ships often immediately. There might be a brief delay, but that doesn’t mean there’s actually a person processing your order.
This level of automation has made things ridiculously simple for customers buying products online or even in some stores. It’s incredible to think how much things have changed from when people used to have to go into a store and hand over money every time they wanted to purchase something. There’s no waiting, and the fact that there’s no waiting is precisely why time seems perceptively to be moving at a faster rate. If you’re not constantly waiting for something, you’re constantly doing things, and therefore your mind is on the task at hand rather than sitting idle.
The best example of this is to think back to when you were on school holidays. Towards the end, the days always seemed to drag because there was nothing to do whereas in school you were constantly busy and so looking back on the term it seemed to go very fast indeed. That’s exactly the impact that automated tech has had on our psyche. But it’s also made thing incredibly efficient and indeed easy.
So, if it were gone, the world would be slower once more, but it would also mean that we wouldn’t be able to get nearly as much done in our lives. And, businesses would find it far more difficult to make a profit.
How We Interact
It was only a couple of years ago that Sony shocked audiences and the world at the E3 Expo by showing just how reliant on online interactions we had become. Every part of their presentation was focused on the idea of connecting, playing and interacting with people online rather than in the real world. Who would have thought that this would be a teaser into the direction society was heading? These days, business interactions, social interactions and even first personal meetings are all online.
If you want to meet someone, you might join Tinder. Staying in touch with colleagues through the day who could be operating from anywhere? You may choose to use an app like Google Chat. We’re judged for a professional position based on our LinkedIn profile or even our Twitter, and the list goes on. Some people believe that our reliance on social media has led to a shift in human emotions. The argument is that we become desensitised to the feelings of those around us. While it’s true people can certainly get nasty online thanks to the safety of what they perceive to be anonymity, it’s not the whole story. Social media has also allowed us to become a globalised society, connected no matter where. #MeToo would never have spread across the globe without social media. In fact, it probably would have never existed. That’s another benefit of social media. It has given a voice to groups of people who otherwise, would simply not be heard.
How Our Security Has Changed
Lastly, it is worth thinking about whether we were more secure and safe a decade ago. The answer is probably yes. You weren’t as open or exposed before 2000 as you are today. All your data and personal files weren’t stored online. There wasn’t, as far as we know, a massive database of every website you visited and every store you bought from. There is today. Today, you are massively exposed to the threat of a hack whether you are a business or indeed an individual. The Equifax scandal seen on washingtonpost.com showed this. When Equifax was hacked, it left, hundreds of thousands of customers exposed to identity fraud which is scary enough. What’s worse is that it took six months for them to actually find out.
It’s true that before online data based, buying online and other tech changes, this would never have been an issue. If you burned your papers before binning bank statements, you were more or less safe. But this is a price we pay for a world where things move so quickly, purchases are so easy, and the world is such a connected, integrated global population.