Can We Just Inter-Not?

, , , , , , | Related | January 11, 2018

(There is a scheduled power-outage in our area from 9:00 am to 1:00 pm so that our power company can do some maintenance on our power lines. At about 8:55 am, my dad, who is away on a business trip, texts my mom that there is a document that he needs scanned and emailed to him. She, of course, panics, and rushes upstairs to where our scanner is to try and get the document to him before our power goes out. She comes back downstairs, having scanned the document to her laptop, right as 9:00 rolls around and the power shuts off.)

Mom: “Will our laptops even work now that the power’s out?”

Me: “Yeah, they just won’t be able to connect to the Internet, since our wireless router is down.”

Mom: “So, I won’t be able to send this email now, will I?”

Me: “Nope.”

Mom: “Okay, I guess I’ll have to go into town and find a cafe or something with Wi-Fi I can use. I’ll have to text your dad back and tell him… if I can even send a text right now.”

Me: “Yeah, your phone uses cellular data; it doesn’t need our Wi-Fi in order to work.”

Mom: “Oh, okay.”

(Then, as I’m walking away:)

Mom: “Will I even be able to open this document now?”

Me: “You mean the one you just scanned? Yeah, it’s just a PDF on your computer; you don’t need the Internet to open it.”

(And that’s about when I realized just how thoroughly she misunderstood how the Internet works. I spent the last hour reassuring her that her phone doesn’t need Wi-Fi in order to function every time she tries to do anything besides making a call. I love her dearly, and I know she didn’t grow up in the digital age the way I did, but… yikes.)

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