Question: “What are the most essential things in life?”
Answer 1 (year 1900) – Food, Shelter, and water.
Answer 2 (year 2017) – Wi-Fi, Food, and Wi-Fi.
You’re alone at home on a hot summer day. Your internet connection is down, and, fortunately, you have no homework for the day. How would you spend your day?
Catch up on the latest Netflix TV shows?
Scroll through your news feed on Facebook and text your friends on WhatsApp?
Order a new pair of shoes on Amazon?
The internet has taken over our lives more than any of us can ever imagine. Restaurant and hotel bookings, hospital appointments, online shopping, Online tutorials…. The list goes on. Entire businesses depend on the internet. The latest smartphones and wearable devices would be equivalent to junk without the holy grail that is the internet. Researchers have spent more working hours on the intricacies of the World Wide Web than we can possibly imagine. So, what would it be like if the internet suddenly vanished?
Day 1 – Utter chaos. Software giants like Google, Twitter and Facebook suddenly don’t exist anymore. Millions of hours’ worth of video is lost from YouTube. Shock and chaos prevails. Conspiracy theories abound. Thousands of people take their phones to ask Yahoo answers “What happened to the Internet”…. and then throw their phone away in despair. Planes are delayed, doctor appointments are cancelled, and e-mail…well it’s just “mail” now.
Day 7 – People realise those pending Amazon orders will never arrive. Online streaming is no longer a thing – “Netflix and chill” is no more the world’s favourite pastime – and we are forced to watch TV. Humans are now used to talking to each other face to face. The number of “friends” we have goes down from 567 to 2. Phones are used for actual calling. The number of apps on our phone drops from 100 to 10. Approximately 95% of the population can’t get from point A to point B, because you can’t ask Google Maps to navigate for you anymore.
Day 100 – A meme-less world has now been created. The word “viral” is obsolete. “YouTuber” is no longer a job opportunity. Without online gaming, EA Sports and 2K Sports post record losses. Bill Gates is still the richest man alive. People actually buy clothes, gadgets and food from physical stores. Everyone is suddenly working ten times harder, and productivity is through the roof.
Day 365 – Apple comes up with its own version of the World Wide Web, called the “iWeb”. Life returns to normal.