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Monday, August 03, 2009

Living in the Post-Internet Age

Shortly after noon today, large sections of the internet went dark across many UK higher education establishments. The outages were patchy and seemed to depend, in part, on location, but most services were unavailable, including institutional services.

My first thought was "How do I survive without the Internet?", followed seconds later by "What still works?". The answer to that one was Google and all the associated properties (including GMail), Twitter (via the API but not via web), Posterous, Wikipedia, and a patchwork quilt of external services.

Within minutes, I was up and running again, although having to use a little ingenuity to route around some of the blank spots. Those who were tied to institutional services ... had a long lunch break (presumably).

So the moral of this story is:

Spread your love around, and if you love your users, set them free.