How internet has changed life

Published: 01st September 2008
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THE ALARM buzzed shrilly and woke me up from my sweet dreams of fame and glory.
I sat up in bed, and then got out reluctantly. Half asleep, I went to my
computer, which was on all night, downloading the latest U2 album. I
double-clicked on the MP3 files and turned on my speakers. Instantly, the sounds
of "Vertigo" filled the room, as I showered and got dressed.

I had a couple of minutes to spare so I decided to check the news. I opened IE,
typed in yahoo.com and got a gist of what was happening around the world. I also
checked my email, only to find a reminder for my friend's birthday in my inbox.
"I should remember to buy her a gift on the way back," I thought and left for
work.

What you just read was a typical day in the life of an internet-savvy person,
which largely means almost everyone out there. The internet has changed our
lives in more ways than one, but here are the 10 most important ones:



1. Enhancing relationships

Many people say the internet has turned people into "islands," attributing the
demise of many relationships to it. That isn't true. The internet has brought
people far closer than ever before. A decade ago, if a friend left the country,
it would usually mean a decline in the level of friendship, if not the end of
it.



Now, it's quite easy to stay in touch. In fact, anyone can interact with friends
and family all over the world via email, chat software like mIRC, websites like
Orkut, instant messengers like MSN or Yahoo! Messenger, Voice Over IP (VoIP)
applications and video conferencing kits.

From keeping in touch with old friends to meeting new people, the internet is
responsible for a revolution of sorts. It has even become a matchmaker, thanks
to websites like shaadi.com, naseeb.com and matchmaker.com.



2. Entertainment

Our concept of entertainment has changed a great deal. Every form of
entertainment now has presence on the web and new forms are also coming up,
because of the internet. There are online radio stations that we can listen to (freevirginradio.com,
live365.com, muziq.net and shoutcast.com), online movies and videos that we can
watch on real.com and msn.com, e-books which we can read, games that we can play
and compete internationally, on sites like Yahoo! Games. Now it's possible to go
through millions of websites, offering every possible kind of entertainment
without getting bored.



3. E-commerce

The internet has sparked off revolutionary business models. Who would have
thought that one day, small businesses would be able to compete against
transnational companies? Who would have thought that you could have goods
delivered to you, from anywhere in the world, by entering just a credit card
number on a website?



In US, we have an online package delivery company, offering tracking services,
online ordering, delivery reports and other related services. Because of this,
we have come to expect these services from other companies as well and these
have become our minimum standards of customer service. Thus, all package
delivery companies are now trying to meet this minimum standard, greatly
benefiting the customer.



4. Information

The information available on the web is simply mind-boggling. From a doctor's
advice on probably every disease under the sun, on sites like webmd.com, to the
latest research in meta-physics or genetics, the amount of information now
available on the internet surpasses everything that man may have created in the
past.



Specialty portals like www.webopedia.com for IT, www.dictionary.com for
journalists and writers, www.ivillage.com for women, askmen.com for men,
www.cnet.com for electronics have sprung up, which provide information on a
previously unimaginable scale.

Search engines have also played a big role in bringing the internet to its
current position of importance. In fact, Google raised the standards for every
search engine out there and still continues to be innovative. With services like
Gmail, Orkut, AdSense and Froogle, Google has been breaking fresh ground.



5. Work

A decade or so ago, meetings with international clients or customers were rare
and usually involved traveling. Now your client or partner is a Video Conference
away and that too, if instant messaging is not enough. The internet has enabled
companies across the world to keep in touch via email or chat and they can now
collaborate easily.



6. Education

Gone are the days when a teacher would refer to a certain book or article in a
magazine which students were expected to read and discuss. Now, with the power
of the internet and the search ability of Google, students can update
information from around the world.

Not only that, but learning programs and training by the finest teachers in the
world are now available online for those willing to pay.



7. Language

The internet has changed the way we talk, speak, and write. Google is now
officially a verb in the English language. Similarly, the "smiley", :-), is one
of the most recognized symbols in the world which is even used in normal
writings to denote happiness. And "becuz of the gr8 way w3 cht, z entire eng.
lang. has been hard hit, esp. in scoolz."

The net has also changed perceptions. For instance, being a "techno-geek" is now
thought to be cool, when previously a "geek" used to be the kid who was avoided
by all. Also, words like "Uber-cool" and "hack" have come from the net lexicon.



8. Self-expression

The world of publication has never seen so much personal writing than it now has
because of the internet, especially the blogs. Websites like www.blogger.com and
www.20six.co.uk/ have made publishing fast and easy. Now you have the choice of
reading about something as mundane as somebody's personal life, to as out of the
ordinary as discussions on philosophy and human behaviour.



In fact, the amount of influence certain blogs now command has altered politics,
society and even business. No longer will the individual be forced to accept the
hegemony of dictatorships and misguided multinationals because there will always
be a blog willing to take the risk of criticizing such "evil" trends. The power
of these blogs is so great that Microsoft has resorted to hiring a "Web
Evangelist" whose job is to answer blogs that criticize the company and its
products.



9. Travelling

From buying tickets online to finding about the best travel destinations,
resorts, vacation packages and tourist spots, just about everything is now
available online. Even countries have taken to this medium to attract tourists,
since more and more travelers now want information about everything that a
country offers before buying a ticket.



10. Business

Now people can stay at home and still run entire companies or businesses. More
than that, the internet has truly allowed businesses to go global.


11.IT Training

As for new students and IT professional who keep on updating them-self for
latest certification like MCITP Training
and MCTS Training and have not much
time for training to enhance the leave of expertise in the IT field thanks to
Teskingdom.com, they have real life scenarios which provide the students the
exact knowledge for the exam day.



The outsource movement that has become such a boon for India, and now for US,
would not have been possible without the internet. Companies now literally work
at 100 per cent capacity, with businesses operating 24 hours a day, increasing
productivity and improving living standards across the board.




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