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I Get Why The Internet Is Such A Popular Search Medium

Updated on November 19, 2007

Let’s see if you can relate. You want to know about something. Something you REALLY need good information on, what do you do?

Without the Internet, remember how you had to do it? (Those of you old enough. You young whiper-snappers probably wouldn’t know where to start, but those of us old enough to remember the gas-crisis of the 70’s will at least have some idea) Let me give you a clue. It involved getting in your car, or taking a bus, or knowing someone who had the answers. Give up? I’ll tell you. The Public Library. That’s right. It’s an antiqued idea but let me remind you how powerful a tool this was.

You signed up for a “library card” to the library of your choice. This involved manually completing an application, using real paper and real ink. Delivering it in person to the authority figure who got to decide if you were worthy enough (okay, so that’s not true, they wanted everyone who wanted to read, to have access) and you were “issued” a card. This little piece of plastic gave you some amazing access. Unheard of access. An entire library of the collected works of some of the greatest thinkers of all time. Oh yeah, and the guy that wrote a book about how to rebuild your lawn mower or how to complete a grant application. Back then, only books, magizines and newspapers made into the halls of the library. Meaning, someone had to publish it. Meaning there was oversight! Someone read your work and decided if it was worthy. If it had value. If it would sell.

Hmmm.

Now, we have the Internet. A vast network of computers, servers and backbones of connectivity. And an open system, push button publishing. Think it, write it and push a button and it is OUT THERE. Wow! Never before in history has it been possible for the average man or woman to give pen to an idea, and have it available to the masses. Which means, there is a LOT of content on the Internet. And since some of the same “filters” aren’t in place for Internet content that existed for the type of content that made it into libraries, not all of it is of the highest quality.

There is one overriding reason so many use the Internet now and the books in libraries are gathering dust. Convenience! Image if you will, you have a burning question, something you want to know right now. Only, it’s 2:00 am. The local library doesn’t open for several hours yet. You’re stuck.

The Internet is open 24/7, 365 days a year. And while the some of the content isn’t the highest quality, there is a lot of it. Surf long enough, and you WILL find those hidden gems. Search often enough, and you learn the best way to search, what to exclude, what search engines cater to your “area of interest” and how to filter out what isn’t what you are looking for.

So, I get why the Internet is such a popular research medium. Convenience. Pure and simple. Surf any time of the day or night. Read things written by your next door neighbor or Issac Asimov. What a wonderful time we live in.

Just my two cents worth.

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