The internet was commercialized in 1995, and changed the way the world interacts forever. Twelve years later, the iPhone was introduced and changed our lives and the way we interact forever. Many of these changes are great, but are they all?
Here are 25 ways smart phones and the internet have changed our lives: (For better or for worse)
Before we had the internet, iPhones and other smart phones:
- To do research, you went to a library.
- If you wanted to know the weather, you either watched the weather channel or walked over to your own thermometer.
- If you wanted to pay a bill or make a transfer, you had to go to the bank. (Not long before that, if you wanted to go shopping, you had to have cash or credit... debit didn't exist yet.)
- If you wanted to play a video game, you had to have a gaming system or software installed on your computer. (My first gaming system was an Atarri when I was 7)*
- If you wanted to watch a television show, you had to have cable, and you had to either record it on your VCR or be home to watch it when it aired. There were no apps or websites to get the latest episodes from, nor DVD box sets of TV series you could purchase.
- To watch a movie, you had to have a television and a VCR. You also had to have a VHS tape, which, if you wanted to rent one, you had to get from a video store. (Who remembers Jumbo Video?)
- To find out what time it was, you had to tune in to the community channel, the weather channel, or check your watch. (Sales of which drop yearly as younger generations no longer wear them)
- If you wanted to listen to music, you had to have a cassette player or CD player. You had to purchase an entire album even if you only liked one song. If you wanted portable music, you had to own a Walkman or a Discman. If you didn't have a good quality Diskman, it was more like a Skipman. Every step would make a song skip.
- If you heard a song and couldn't figure out who it was by, you'd just go insane wondering.
- To find out what happened to all your friends from high school, you had to hold a reunion.
- You had to have a book to put all your contact's information in, but it wasn't called a contact list. It was called an address book. What's more, none of the address's ended in .ca or .com.
- You had to own a calculator.
- To talk to your friends and or family, you had to use a telephone, or see them in person.
- If you wanted to take pictures, you needed a camera.
- If you wanted to make movies, you needed a video camera.
- To draw, you needed paper... and a pencil.
- You needed a notepad to make a shopping list.
- If you kept a diary, it was on paper.
- If you wanted to gamble, you had to leave your house. (If there was a "con's" column, this would definitely go there)
- You had to call the theater or check the newspaper to find out what was playing and at what time.
- You had to buy huge maps that were awkward to use and didn't give out directions or suggest alternate routes.
- To shop, you had to use a catalog and phone-in your order or go to a store.
- You had to be in the same room as your friends to play a board game with them.
- If you saw an actor you knew you'd seen in something else but couldn't quite place, you wouldn't be able to check IMDB, so you would invariably wake up at three AM shouting "It was Al Pacino!" triumphantly to a empty room or grumbly spouse.
- You had to have a day planner to organize your calendar and keep track of your appointments.
How has your smart phone changed your life? Is it for better? Or for Worse?