One sure way to measure your network dependency is to live in a building in which broadband is included with your rent, and see how you respond when the Internet suddenly, completely, and inexplicably breaks. And there is nothing you can do about it — no router you can reset, or DSL modem you can futz with, no customer service hotlines on which to hold. There is only your apartment’s leasing and maintenance office, where you’ll be told, “uh, yeah — it’s broke.”
How many times do you turn to the computer to look something up, only to realize you can’t, before the aggravation really starts to kick in?
How long does it take before you pack up the laptop and head down to the coffee shop, the one with the open wi-fi?
How long before you start picking fights with roommates or family members?
How long before paralysis sets in, in which you feel it impossible to accomplish anything?
[UPDATE, 5.17.06, 11.00 am: Yes, I changed the title of this post. I’m so deranged by my lack of networked communication that I totally fumbled the support group reference. And left the ball lying on the field for a full day. What a maroon.]