“Ask a boy to write a letter… He will Google it for you!”
Such is the impact of the INTERNET today. There is hardly any individual in the world today whose life has not been impacted by this magic stuff called the internet!
As Wikipedia defines it, “The Internet is a global system of interconnected computer networks that consists of millions of private, public, academic, business and government networks of local to global scope that are linked by a broad array of electronic, wireless and optical networking technologies.”
We all know what it is and what it has done to our lives. The internet has revolutionized the way we use personal computers. And in turn it has been a major factor behind the development of such a huge variety of gadgets that allow us to surf the internet – anywhere and anytime! Well, for that try and imagine you iPad or your iPhone without an active internet access. Scary, isn’t it?
The internet has taken over nearly every realm of human life and activity. With the huge plethora of websites and search engines flooding the World Wide Web every day, it is practically impossible not to find anything that you might be looking for. From definition of “Claustrophobic” to conjugal habits of the Zulu tribe in Africa – Mr. Internet knows it all. Knowledge has never been so freely and widely available to people as it is today – thanks to the internet.
What’s more! The Internet is not just another network that provides you material for your school project work. It has connected people’s lives on a global scale. In the era of Liberalization Privatization & Globalization, perhaps it is the Internet that has done more than anything else to globalize the world population. If the invention of the Television had made the world a ‘Global Village’, then the Internet has definitely shrunken that village under a single roof!
And with the power of fast internet coming readily into the hands of the masses, it is crucial to turn a few pages and have a glimpse at how this has impacted our lives.
10. Learn or work from home
They say with the introduction of computers, illiteracy and unemployment has been on the rise. But is it really true, given the options that internet has opened up for us today?
People, who have neither the time nor the means to go to a University, now enroll into some online education program that teaches through seminars and video lecture sessions and get a degree. Students prefer to learn from a larger collection of books – thanks to the E-books and online libraries that are accessible via the internet.
Even a layman lacking in a specific skill set can earn quite a few bucks sitting at home by doing various survey and data operations jobs that available online. For large companies that have employees at distant places, meetings are now held through online video sessions, thus saving both time and money wasted on physical transportation. Using softwares like Team Viewer, someone sitting here, can virtually access and work on a computer placed at some other corner of the world!
9. Finding your way is child’s play
What did you do when you lost your way before? Took directions from the traffic police or a cab driver? And how many times have you been actually misguided!
Well, with the enhanced internet connectivity and GPS enabled mobile phones, people have become their own guides. People now not only decide the best route for their journey, but also can find places of interest – be it a restaurant or a petrol pump. Online maps are getting better by the day and one can even enjoy the comfort of an audio navigator! And it works in the remotest of places too.
8. Global Arena for showcasing talents
You don’t need to hunt for an audience; the Internet has brought the whole world right before you.
If you are good at writing, blogging sites like Blogger, WordPress and the like, will surely help you shine bright. For those with a passion for photography, sites like Picasa, Flickr, 500px, Fotoblur, and Pinterest are the perfect haven online. One can even create and display a virtual portfolio! You can also exhibit and sale you paintings online – sites like DeviantArt will surely help you out!
You can also earn a few bucks by freelance writing on professional blogs like Your Story Club, Freelance4writers and ListCrown or posting stock photos on ShutterStock, Getty Images or Hongkiat!
Doesn’t matter if you are a not a Belieber, you can always make a video of your little card trick or a guitar performance and upload it online. Then sit back and watch it go viral!
Gone are those days of running behind publishers with manuscripts in hand and see them get rejected with foolish excuses. Now you can publish your work online and reach a greater audience with lesser efforts. Thanks to the Amazon Kindle Publishing service, you can write your own e-books and actually see your work getting claimed worldwide!
7. Entertainment All-rounder
Gearing up for a party and don’t have the right music CD? Relax. Internet will help you out. A large variety of music is readily available online to suit your various needs. Just plug in your PC and speakers and enjoy!
Want to watch the latest music video of your favorite star? You have YouTube! It even has playlists and Jukeboxes that can really save your time searching for and compiling the tracks!
Want to enjoy cool music from your hometown? Just type it in and you can listen to your favorite FM radio channels online. And you thought you didn’t have a radio set?!
Don’t have a TV at your place? So what? Just name the sitcom or the comedy show and you have it right on your screen. Video sites make everything available online, so that you can enjoy them at your own convenience, not bound by the TV schedules.
Want a cool wallpaper of your favorite celebrity for your room? No need to hunt for newspaper clippings. Look it up online! And yes, you can even get it printed online and delivered at your doorstep!
6. Information on the go
There was a time when people actually waited eagerly to hold the newspaper in hand alongside the morning cup of tea. The news broadcasts on the TV or radio were the only other sources of information throughout the day.
But internet has totally changed this scenario of information exchange. We are all connected round the clock, and news seem to travel even faster than electricity nowadays. Even the newspapers and news channels post their media online for easier and faster public access. And thanks to the huge variety of gadgets available, anyone can make and share evidential news!
Today, if you are stuck up over an issue and need to seek expert guidance, all you need is the internet. Online discussion forums will definitely sort out all your doubts, be it about choosing your next smartphone or deciding upon your next vacation trip. These forums are so active that you have opinions from experts worldwide, which makes it very helpful at times when you are really confused about something. Then you have forums like Quora where you can discuss literally anything, from “How to get a Girlfriend?” to “Who should be the next Prime Minister?”
“Information will always be provided to those who are online… All you need is ask!”
5. Everything seems gratis
How many of you still purchase music CDs and movie DVDs from the local store? Or empty your pocket money over a copy of GTA or FIFA?
The way we distribute and use digital media has been completely revolutionized by the internet. Hear a new track and you can download it for free online. Movies, pictures, games or software’s, everything is available for free at the click of a Download button. This has of course sent the copyright laws haywire, but who cares. “It’s all about Sharing & not Caring!”
You don’t even need to worry about carrying a pen drive to carry your work with you. The internet does even that for you. With free online cloud storage services like Drop Box, Sky Drive, Google Drive, Just Cloud and Ubuntu One, it doesn’t matter where you are. If you have internet, you can access your work from any PC – such is the versatility and portability bestowed upon us by the internet!
And you thought space wasn’t free?!
4. Money is online
Don’t have cash with you? Can’t go to the stores to buy a pizza? Relax; all you need is the internet!
With the advent of online banking, life has simply become easier. One can transfer money, pay bills, make savings and even go shopping, just at the click of a few buttons. The bank carries your money; you carry the bank with you, whenever and wherever you go!
And then you have those sites like Flipkart, Myntra and Snapdeal which brings you the entire store on your screen. Nearly all companies have opened up to online shopping, thus saving the customers’ time and energy. From books to pizzas, gadgets to household goods, you can purchase everything online. You can even plan out entire holidays and book tickets for trips and movies online, all at the comfort of your bedroom.
Online advertisement is a newly rising trend that has really helped buyers meet sellers! You can easily advertise and sell your old unused book collection at OLX or auction your prized possession at eBay!
If you don’t find it at the local store, just order it online!
3. Traditional is no more Conventional
When was the last time you had actually dropped a letter in the post box with a stamp on it?
Or filled out a 10-page application form first with a pencil and then a pen, to avoid errors and spoiling it?
Only an arrogant antediluvian life form will still prefer Snail mail or Pigeon mail. Because the internet has given us electronic mail (E-mail), that seems to be the best possible thing that can happen to mailboxes! You type a letter at your ease and send it to anyone, anywhere instantly. Just another click of a button and you has multiple recipients, all at no postal charge!
Application and registration forms for various institutions are preferably filled online nowadays, owing to their flexibility of data management and processing. You can proceed at your own convenience; even save, view and edit a partially filled form! The internet has hence facilitated our lives by saving both our time and energy.
Why wait in the line, when you can just do it online!
2. Friends are just a click away
“What’s on your mind?”
This is perhaps the question that you asked your friend when you met him in the morning every day. There was a time we would actually go out for a casual walk in the park in the morning or evening, maybe with a friend and talk about our lives, our issues and our achievements. We met new people on the go and made new friends in our locality.
Well the Internet has interfered even with this aspect of human social life. How do you spend your time after coming home from school or work? Chatting with friends on Facebook or Google Talk? Or even better, searching and making new friends from different walks of life over the internet. Everyone nowadays seems interested in “tweeting” their daily routine!
Internet has actually facilitated communication by allowing us to make voice and video calls over the internet, thus bridging social gaps considerably. A mother sitting in India, can both see and listen at the same time to her son studying in the U.S, as if he were sitting right in the bedroom!
With online chat rooms and dating sites flooding the internet every day, youngsters today find it really very interesting to spend more time in front of the computer screen rather than going on an actual date!
However, it is of prime concern if this social networking is actually detaching us from the real world by pushing our lives into virtual connectivity. Today, if one is to shift to a new locality, he prefers to find people from that locality via Facebook and make friends. The art of socializing seems to have been overshadowed by the trend of making friends online!
1. The global Encyclopaedia
How many of you still purchase encyclopedias and books on general knowledge? Or collect newspaper clippings and maintain an information diary?
The internet has brought the whole world virtually at our fingertips. Type a word and hit Search! You have thousands of pieces of information on that topic. One can literally find anything on the internet. History, geography, literature, arts or science – the internet has it all. You don’t need to scourge the town library for your school project anymore; just visit Wikipedia! The internet has all the information you will need, and yes, pictures too! You might even land yourself on some ready made projects made available by some websites. Search engines like Google and Wolfram Alpha are both fast and smart enough to understand what you are looking for. So, the internet has simplified, to a great extent, the work of research scholars too. But, with this vast resource of information, all we need to do is carefully sift through the junk and find what we need.
With the computers getting smarter and the internet becoming faster, we seem to carry the entire world of information with us all the time.
The trend today has become – If you don’t know something, just Google it!