Scary tech!

Halloween is nearly upon us again, the time for ghosts and ghouls and ... well, OK, trick-or-treaters and candy. Still, it's once again time for me to hold a flashlight under face and give you a "scary tech" story.Are you sitting comfortably? Good. Then I'll begin ...

Halloween is nearly upon us again, the time for ghosts and ghouls and ... well, OK, trick-or-treaters and candy. Still, it's once again time for me to hold a flashlight under face and give you a "scary tech" story.

Are you sitting comfortably? Good. Then I'll begin ...

Over the past twelve months we've seen a lot of tech developments. CPUs and GPUs are faster and cheaper, hard drives are bigger and faster, tech gets smaller and does more, operating systems change. But underlining all this is something really, really scary ...

All this technology is great ... until ... it stops working!

Scary tech!

Yes, the point at which tech becomes really scary is when it stops working!

Just this morning, I experienced several hours without Internet access. Should be no big deal since I have plenty of non-Internet things to do, and even if I didn't, I could have looked at the whole thing as a chance to put my feet up and catch up on some reading for a little while.

Is that what I did? No ...

After reporting the fault, and getting confirmation that it wasn't any of my gear that had gone to "Silicon Heaven" I started getting irritated and annoyed. I kept testing the connection every few minutes. At first, every five minutes, but as time went by I was checking it every minute or so. Sure, I'd lost my connection to the net, and that was putting a dent in my work day, but I knew it would be back on ASAP, yet I was acting like my air supply had been cut off. By the time my Internet came back on, I wasn't far from cannibalism. Lucky it wasn't a full moon or anything ...

Over the past year I've noticed that more and more people are becoming more and more reliant on technology, and finding it increasingly difficult to cope when some or all of it is taken away or doesn't work. For example if Gmail or Twitter goes down for only a matter of a few seconds, someone, somewhere will have told me about it (if both go down - and lately the pattern has been that when Gmail goes down, people start tweeting more and that brings Twitter down - then it's a full-blown tech-apocalypse).

Then there are those local failures. Again, over the past year I've noticed that anything that results in a lack of hardware or software continuity (basically, stuff not working) puts an every-increasing crimp in people's ability to do stuff, both work and social. People are relying more on technology, and finding it harder than ever to cope when it's taken away.

So, a closing scary thought for Halloween ... imagine your hard drives dying, your CPUs and GPUs frying, your cellphone not switching on and your Internet connection going dark ...

Goodnight ... and sleep tight!

[And if that wasn't scary enough, take a look at this ... *shudders*]

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