It’s interesting being back in an educational environment because you receive an information explosion from almost everywhere you turn, along with a bit of a shock at just how technology focused, and addicted, our society is becoming.
I have a Science class which tracks earthquakes and land mass changes around the world with live net feeds to seismographs; a class on desktop publishing which is taught remotely by the professor who is in Mexico; a Journalism course which encourages me to keep a list of networked bookmarks that people from all over the world can access and a fourth professor who is available through no less than 5 separate forms of communication, not including traditional phone calls or emails.
On the first day of said Science course, the wizened Geophysicist intoned, “The Internet is down so I can’t show you any of the sites and pictures I had laid out for you, so we’ll use my old slides”.
If the Internet goes down, does it actually makes things more difficult or are we simply forced to work a little harder? According to a 2004 study, it looks as though it can in some cases be impossible.
Considering the age of that report, perhaps there might be something a bit more recent. Not only is there this addictive gem courtesy of CNN to look at , but another from the student paper at Case Western Reserve University provides a few ideas of how to deal when we are faced with a world devoid of the Web.