Saturday, October 1, 2016

INTERNET: The speed of technology

Whenever I'm dealing with a tech support person, I have a mental picture of a much younger person, a member of the generation who grew up with the Internet and has an innate understanding of all things digital. Sometimes, though, I'm wrong.
The other day I was on the phone for 20 minutes with Anton, a hugely competent Verizon Fios guy who was straightening out my account: it seems my Internet speed had never been upgraded over the years and was now slower than even their entry-level version.
Anton seemed distressed by this and asked with wonder how I had put up with it for so long. I laughed and, flipping easily into old-codger mode, told him about the early days of the digital age, circa 1992, when I could brush my teeth in the time it took for my computer to connect to the Internet (via a noisy external modem), and how even a rainstorm would sever the connection. Compared to that, even my current speed was a marvel.
I told him about how prior to cell phones, if you wanted privacy you had to drag the telephone phone into your bedroom.
Very much to my surprise, he could relate -- he was one of "us" dinosaurs! In fact, he said he used to get in trouble for stretching the phone cord of his family's kitchen phone so far and so often that it hung down to the floor.  

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