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The Internet Networking Technology

Ask Slashdot: Living Without Internet At-Home Access? 462

Posted by timothy
from the you-thought-your-uncle-was-weird dept.
An anonymous reader writes "I've decided that the internet is no longer a positive influence on my life, and am interested in canceling my service. In the interest of not forgoing all digital conveniences, I plan to set up a small intranet, hosting a few resources that I think I'd like to have access to on a regular basis (e.g. a text dump of Wikipedia). I'll also still have access to the internet at my office, and have easy access to public Wi-Fi at libraries and coffee shops. My questions are thus: Does anybody have any experience living without the internet? What major nuisances did you encounter? What resources should I put on my intranet? Is there anything I'm overlooking?"
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Ask Slashdot: Living Without Internet At-Home Access?

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  • Obvious (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Porn

  • No Carrier (Score:3, Funny)

    by Pete LaGrange (696064) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @01:39PM (#36705800)

    I've got some really sage advice for you, but you won't be able to get it...

    • Re:No Carrier (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 09, 2011 @01:55PM (#36705964)

      Exactly. The first step if you want to prepare for living without an internet: Learn to figure out this sort of stuff without asking about it online.

      Besides, it's not the internet that is your problem. The problem isn't your ability to read news, do banking, etc. online but that you waste your time by doing things you shouldn't do. Canceling your internet as a time management method is like realizing that you drove drunk last night and deciding that your problem is the car ownership. If you can't channel your time to something more productive even after realizing the problem, you have a lot bigger issues than the time wasting itself.

      • Re:No Carrier (Score:5, Insightful)

        by Hatta (162192) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @02:15PM (#36706174) Journal

        Canceling your internet as a time management method is like realizing that you drove drunk last night and deciding that your problem is the car ownership.

        Is that not a valid way of dealing with the problem? If you know you can't control your drinking, this seems like an effective way of mitigating the damage it causes.

        • by ilikejam (762039) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @02:24PM (#36706250) Homepage

          And not owning a car leaves you with more cash for tasty, tasty booze. Everybody's happy!

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by Brama (80257)

          Except that you're more than a little likely to run into something else that you will waste time on, thereby once again avoiding the issue that is _really_ at stake here. This is fighting the symptoms of a problem, not actually tackling the problem that's apparently bothering this person.

          • by plover (150551) * on Saturday July 09, 2011 @04:06PM (#36706920) Homepage Journal

            I don't think that time-wasting is the issue at stake. I think he's actually unemployed and out of money and needs to save his $$$, and canceling his connection seems like the result of a logical conclusion that it's a luxury he could do without.

            Hey, if it was me and my choice was Internet access vs. feeding my kids, guess which one is going to win, every time? I'd sure miss them, but we could probably Skype and email each other.

          • Re:No Carrier (Score:5, Insightful)

            by FrootLoops (1817694) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @05:30PM (#36707414)

            You seem to know an awful lot about this person. Maybe wasting time isn't the issue--all we get is "I've decided that the internet is no longer a positive influence on my life". I would say their writing style suggests they posses discipline rather than lack it. They included four clear and mostly specific questions. They wrote carefully and included non-standard but descriptive words (eg. forgoing; thus; nuisances). Time wasting is somewhat low on my list of probable reasons this person wants to get rid of their home internet.

            Some other explanations that come to mind (not necessarily in any order): they're sick of wading through garbage online; they want to save money (low probability); they got burned by participating in some online community (high probability; fits the sentence I quoted and perhaps the discipline I noted); they have some internet-related non-time-wasting addiction (eg. porn; gambling).

            In any case, people are usually more complex than the first thing that pops into your mind. I often don't like coders because they're such a poor judge of people. They're used to telling computers exactly what to do and being exactly right about cause and effect in that arena. Then they transfer those reactions to real life and act like idiots because of it. Mathematicians do the same thing, though maybe a bit less often (per capita).

        • by khasim (1285) <brandioch.conner@gmail.com> on Saturday July 09, 2011 @02:55PM (#36706486)

          Is that not a valid way of dealing with the problem? If you know you can't control your drinking, this seems like an effective way of mitigating the damage it causes.

          How about changing the phrasing to such:

          I drink alcohol to excess
          and when I am intoxicated I make dangerous decisions
          such as
          a. blah blah
          b. blah blah
          c. blah blah
          d. driving drunk

          Getting rid of the car will make choice "d" more difficult to implement (but not impossible, you could borrow someone else's car before going out).

          And you lose the benefits of owning your own transportation.

          Without addressing any of the other secondary issues (a, b and c).

          And without addressing the primary issue (drinking too much alcohol for your metabolism).

        • Re:No Carrier (Score:5, Insightful)

          by Vellmont (569020) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @03:07PM (#36706548) Homepage


          Is that not a valid way of dealing with the problem? If you know you can't control your drinking, this seems like an effective way of mitigating the damage it causes.

          I think it's a good start. Perhaps learning how to have better influences in your life involves cutting off the bad ones and learning new habits. It's certainly possible that you'll find other bad habits that waste time (TV, drinking, etc.). But why not try it?

          I think the best advice I could give someone is to build an offline library. An offline copy of wikipedia isn't a bad idea. But I'd also concentrate on actual paper books. Take the money you'd spend on an ISP and put it towards books, or magazine subscriptions. I'd also look towards what positive things you can do to replace "the internet". Removing one thing you think is bad isn't going to promote positive change in and of itself.

          The people here chiming in about "oh noes, how will you live!" are deluding themselves. It won't be easy, but personally I think it'll be enlightening. Cutting off what you think might be a bad influence on your life can only tell you something about yourself. Maybe it'll tell you that the internet wasn't such a bad influence after all. Maybe it'll change you for the good. Maybe it'll tell you that "the internet" isn't your problem. Maybe you're absolutely right, and the internet was the bad influence in the first place. All of those are good things to learn, but you can't learn them until you do it. Good luck.

          • by Larryish (1215510)

            I spent about 2 years being disconnected from the Internet, seems like it was 2004-2006. Moved into a new apartment and never bothered to turn it on.

            You would not believe how much more free time I had at that point.

            Learned quite a bit about cooking, got better at my few musical instruments, even got a girlfriend to whom I am now married.

            Of course now that I am married, the Internet is a convenient way to escape the wife.

            On second thought, DON'T EVER GET RID OF YOUR INTERNET SERVICE!!

            Trust me on this.

        • Re:No Carrier (Score:4, Informative)

          by Antisyzygy (1495469) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @03:11PM (#36706580)
          If you know you can't control your drinking you don't burn down all the liquor stores within 5 miles of your house, forcing yourself to go 6 miles away to get booze when you need it. You go get treatment for the problem itself. I used to have a bad drinking problem, mostly due to a combination of genetics and depression. I went the in-patient and out-patient treatment route with AA. It never sat well with me because I am an atheist and the whole higher power thing seems ridiculous to me since there are medical reasons for addiction. Then, I discovered a little pill called Naltrexone and I drink moderately about 90 percent of the time. Since it blocks the dopamine receptors in my brain I do not get positive feedback from drinking (or eating). Lesson? You can do things to control your problem through medical and psychiatric treatment. In his case, maybe he needs to get a porn blocker or some software that only allows internet to be on a few times a day.
          • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

            by jawtheshark (198669) *

            Same here. Atheist, bad drinking problem, didn't find AA helpful. I didn't go the meds way. I found myself a good psychiatrist who 'simply' found a good way to convince me that drinking was going to destroy me long term. I quit cold turkey 1st March 2010, and didn't drink a drip ever since.
            The only valid step with an addiction is realizing you have a problem, and then seeking help.

            • Re:No Carrier (Score:4, Insightful)

              by Antisyzygy (1495469) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @03:42PM (#36706728)
              Agreed. I stopped for about a year and a half and recovered my health. However, as time went on my social and work circle as well as my family were too difficult to be around since they all are either wine snobs, after work happy hour drinkers, or simply unwilling to not drink around me. I didn't feel the desire to drink as strongly as before, but I felt left out of pretty much everything they were doing. It seems like a stupid reason, but it was extraordinarily difficult to want to hang out with any one of the aforementioned people without the possibility of going downward spiral again. I looked into other options and found something called the "Sinclair Method" which uses an opioid antagonist (opioid receptor blocker) to do something called "pharmacological extinction" which beats addiction by removing the positive feedback you get in your limbic system (which is responsible for a lot of addictions). It has a much higher success rate as a treatment VS. AA so I tried it. AA only has about a 15 percent retention rate, and maybe slightly higher of a success rate. Studies actually show that most people do what you did, and that is grow out of it, or they eventually die from it. The Sinclair method worked for me, but I would not recommend trying it if you are already comfortable as a teetotaler. Its not worth the risks and possible problems with your family unless you have extreme family and/or spousal support as well as a doctor willing to take you through the process.
              • Re:No Carrier (Score:5, Interesting)

                by jawtheshark (198669) * <slashdot@ j a w t h eshark.com> on Saturday July 09, 2011 @04:05PM (#36706906) Homepage Journal

                I was lucky in a sense... My own family has been extremely supportive by not drinking ever around me. They don't need to, by now I'm very comfortable around people who drink. My in-laws never stopped drinking around me but the general consensus was that they "admired me for sticking to it". I still am convinced that in reality they didn't admire me for it and it was just a way to encourage me, but it's a way to show support.

                As for everywhere else, well... That was easy. I got nabbed drunk driving (2.2 promille) and speeding (184km/h on their clock). I got my license revoked for a few months and had to explain myself in court. As this was the first offense (ahem, yeah, first time caught in 15 years would be a more apt way to put it), I got my license revoked for 22 months, but on probation. So, I'm free to drive, but should I get caught again (speeding or drinking) within the next five years, I get the 22 months plus whatever the new offense brings me. So, people get that story as for why I don't drink: "I'm on probation, I can't drink". That generally gets accepted.

                That said, I got caught in an alcohol control yesterday, and while I didn't drink anything, I still was extremely stressed.

        • When I lived overseas in a small country, the Internet was dialup at 25 cents US per minute. Needless to say that was basically no Internet. A home server was a must for our local content and we networked our printer for the family.

          Here in the US, the benefit far outweighs the downside. The point is to make it save you money so it pretty much pays for itself. In this I include Netflix at under $10 a month as a replacement for a couple of DVD's rented per week at about $5 each (dated info. Redbox

      • Re:No Carrier (Score:4, Insightful)

        by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 09, 2011 @02:21PM (#36706230)

        I gave up television for a few years (completely, that is no netflix or anything else), and honestly it's like pushing air around a balloon. The truth is that you only have a finite amount of productive time, and when that time is spent your not going to be able to mentally handle anything too deep. Whether it's reading book, internet, tv, going to bar or whatever - it's not going to feel like you've accomplished anything meaningful.. If you want to reclaim your better productive self cut your hours at work instead.

      • by hairyfeet (841228)

        Exactly if he is acting compulsive and against his best interests with the Internet it isn't the big bad Internet that is the problem the problem is control which I would argue is more important and running away from the issue won't help.

        I would suggest that instead of pulling the plus, which would also deny him many useful things like access to maps, government websites, email, etc he use a timer, either one built into his router or here are some free ones [primewares.com] to choose from. If he pays attention to the timer

  • by jra (5600)

    "I think the Internet contains things which are a negative influence on my life, and I haven't the self-control *not to do those things and go those places*."

    There; FTFY.

    • by ChinggisK (1133009) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @02:12PM (#36706152)

      Does anybody have any experience living without the internet?

      Yes, but those people can't see your post to Slashdot.

    • by slick7 (1703596)

      "I think the Internet contains things which are a negative influence on my life, and I haven't the self-control *not to do those things and go those places*."

      There; FTFY.

      Television is just as negative as the internet, the same as some people. It all boils down to what you do with them.
      For me, I haven't owned a TV for about 20 years. It just sucks the life and intelligence out of you. My caveat is that do whatch some shows at friends houses and on the internet, however, I am very selective about friends and shows.
      The greatest obscenity on TV is the news,. In Russia, Pravda means truth and Izvestia means news, so the saying goes: "There is no truth in the news and there is n

    • by cpu6502 (1960974)

      Today's internet is no more wasteful than what I did BEFORE the web arrived in 1993:

      - forums
      - chat rooms
      - watching videos (on VHS)

      Same old crap - it's just faster now. You hit the nail on the head, because the problem is not the net. It's the person. I don't know the Original poster's habits, but for me disconnecting the net would be pointless. I'd still continue the same time-wasting habits, except with older technology.

      And what does it matter if I waste time? I LIKE being able to see my favorite sho

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Sounds to me like you are not living without internet. Just disconnecting it and making it on demand.

    • Randall Munroe (XKCD dude) dealt with his time management issues by shutting his computer down every time he finished a task, making it more difficult to drift onto slashdot / drudge / whatever else. According to him, it worked quite well, even though he COULD still boot it up again.

      Making "wasting time" something that youd have to go somewhere to do makes it less likely you will waste time.

  • Sanity check (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    "Is there anything I'm overlooking?"

    Sanity comes to mind. If the net and you don't get along then, fine, I am completely behind unplugging a little. But you're talking about on;y removing the net from home and then only a little bit. It sounds to me like you're going about this completely backward. Try pin-pointing the parts of being connected that are bad for you and look at reducing or filtering those. What you're doing will involve a lot of trouble and inconvenience and half-measures. It would be much be

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 09, 2011 @01:43PM (#36705836)

    Stage one, preparation. For this you will need one room which you will not leave. Soothing music. Tomato soup, ten tins of. Mushroom soup, eight tins of, for consumption cold. Ice cream, vanilla, one large tub of. Magnesia, milk of, one bottle. Paracetamol, mouthwash, vitamins. Mineral water, Lucozade, pornography. One mattress. One bucket for urine, one for feces and one for vomitus. One television and one bottle of Valium.

  • by MiddleHitter (473147) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @01:44PM (#36705842) Homepage

    I think the best thing to do is simply try it for a while. This is as easy as unplugging the physical connection to your ISP. Deal with issues as the come up.

  • Wrong Place? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by froggymana (1896008) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @01:45PM (#36705848)

    [quote] Does anybody have any experience living without the internet? [/quote]

    Is the *internet* really the best place to ask this question?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by yiffyfox (162564)

      Anyone alive prior to 22:30 hours (Pacific time zone) on October 29, 1969

  • Get cable or satellite for the news and sports

  • Major withdrawal syndrome... You can trying filling the void with TV or Radio but it's not the same.
  • And it was fine. Of course, this was prior to your birth, but I assure you - people lived just fine without it.
    • by Matheus (586080)

      No we didn't!

    • People made a lot of money distributing letters by horse, do you also recommend such job?

      Of course you can live without it, but nowadays the expectations are much different that when almost nobody had it.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday July 09, 2011 @01:50PM (#36705902)

    It's been over 6 years since I had any sort of access to the internet in any capacity. I don't find that I have any problems with it. You just spend more money on actually buying porn. Otherwise it's no different.

  • by malraid (592373) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @01:53PM (#36705936)

    Does anybody have any experience living without the internet? Yes
    What major nuisances did you encounter? Lack of internet
    What resources should I put on my intranet? A router hooked up to your ISP
    Is there anything I'm overlooking? The usefulness of the internet

    In all seriousness, good luck.

    • by dazedNconfuzed (154242) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @02:52PM (#36706464)

      Those of us born before 1985 or so can remember we LIVED WITHOUT INTERNET. We got by just fine. We went to libraries and subscribed to periodicals and bought books for information. We wrote letters on paper, used stamps, and waited days for mail turnaround. We read National Geographic for education and other activities. We survived, we liked it, we didn't notice much missing.
      No 'net?
      Been there.
      Done that.
      Was nice.
      Don't wanna go back.
      Pity the person who does.

      • by evilviper (135110) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @09:15PM (#36708516) Journal

        Those of us born before 1985 or so can remember we LIVED WITHOUT INTERNET. We got by just fine. [...] We survived, we liked it, we didn't notice much missing.

        To be fair, the world has changed as the internet has grown.

        The internet has greatly helped to shut down stores all over the place, has severely reduced the choices provided in the big-box-stores that remain, etc.

        Before the internet, I'd drive to Blockbuster and rent a game or a movie a couple times each week.. Blockbuster is doing poorly, it's small competitors are nearly gone, and now even it's big competitors like Redbox don't have new movies for months.

        Both Broadcast TV and Cable TV was much higher quality. Though we had fewer channels, there was far more worth watching. No, this isn't just nostalga.

        Radio has become a wasteland precisely because things like Shoutcast and Pandora are so very superior.

        You'll have a hard time finding a record store these days. Maybe Walmart or Target has a CD you want, maybe it doesn't. It probably doesn't...

        When your computers need replacement parts, well, I hope your boss doesn't mind you wasting a lot of time shopping, because you're not going to find that stuff in stores these days.

        • by SeaFox (739806)

          To be fair, the world has changed as the internet has grown.

          The internet has greatly helped to shut down stores all over the place, has severely reduced the choices provided in the big-box-stores that remain, etc.

          Before the internet, I'd drive to Blockbuster and rent a game or a movie a couple times each week.. Blockbuster is doing poorly, it's small competitors are nearly gone, and now even it's big competitors like Redbox don't have new movies for months.

          Both Broadcast TV and Cable TV was much higher quality. Though we had fewer channels, there was far more worth watching. No, this isn't just nostalga.

          Radio has become a wasteland precisely because things like Shoutcast and Pandora are so very superior.

          You'll have a hard time finding a record store these days. Maybe Walmart or Target has a CD you want, maybe it doesn't. It probably doesn't...

          When your computers need replacement parts, well, I hope your boss doesn't mind you wasting a lot of time shopping, because you're not going to find that stuff in stores these days.

          I think you either weren't paying attention or are remembering things in the opposite order they really happened.

          • Big box stores have been blamed for local retailers going away for decades, the latest complainers are grocery stores because more big-box retail stores are becoming dual purpose variety and grocery stores, too. The reduced choices has nothing to do with the Internet. Wal-Mart chose that route itself, literally. It was a business decision they made to allow them to simplify their stores and purc
  • I lived without the internet for the first 42 years of my life.

    It wouldn't be an easy thing to do now because I pay my bills online and do a lot of my shopping online, but I could go back to the old-fashioned way without too many headaches. Life would go on.
    • You lived the fist 42 years of your live without Internet in a society where very few people had access to the Internet. Doing the same in a society where most people have access to the Internet is a bit more difficult.
  • I canceled my Cable TV and Sat Radio, but would never get rid of the internet. Free videos and music is a great boon. Plus being able to talk to friends online, send resume to future employers, and the occassional visit to college girls dot.com ;-)

    I just spent the last 6 months in a hotel, on an out-of-state job, and all they had was 26 kbit/s dialup (fast enough for bittorrent; too slow to watch hulu). That was torture enough. I can't imagine going completely without.

    Especially for the price. I'm only

  • We moved to a rural area with pocket change left in our bank..it was a very tough time for us and we had no internet for quite a few months. To compound the issue, our only income was a web development company we run with only a few clients. Our first month or so we "sniped" access by driving around the motel district of the closest large city. we could always find a few bars of open wireless and did what we had to do to keep the small flame of our business going. We then found that the library in our littl
  • by UberOogie (464002) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @01:56PM (#36705976)

    Is Saturday really the right time to be asking on the Web for helpful advise from people who have already foregone the Internet except at work?

  • Aren't those called encyclopedias?

  • by goodmanj (234846) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @01:57PM (#36705992)

    You want to go off the Internet, so your first instinct for advice is to POST TO SLASHDOT?

    A) You've come to the wrong place.
    B) You'll never make it anyway.

  • Personally - I wouldn't even bother with the text dumps and whatnot. Just cut it off completely. If you need wiki or whatnot then catch it when you're at work. If it's important enough you'll find yourself at the library or coffee shop anyway.

    I've been slowly cutting myself off from a lot of things like that (cable tv, WoW, Starcraft, Facebook, etc) and I find I just fill the voids with other things. I'm currently playing my PS2 more than I have in ages. Not all bad though because my attention span for that

    • Checking bank account balances and activity
    • Paying bills
    • Getting directions to places (ok, so you can get a GPS or use a smartphone, sure)
    • Store locations, hours, etc.

    As another poster pointed out, this seems like more of an issue of self control. I would suggest starting out with a dd-wrt or similar firmware for your router, and a)setting no-internet hours (say, maybe you only have internet for 2 hours after dinner?) and maybe blocking sites you spend too much time on.

    These mechanisms could be defea

  • Anyone that's been in the military recently can give you a pretty good of how much of a pain it is, though they are all dealing with far less (no full access at work). Obviously mileage will vary, since some of them have access to wide open internet all the time, and others won't have any for months.

    On the carrier, I had access to email pretty much all the time (while I wasn't actively working and the ship wasn't on radio silence), but internet access meant 15-30 minutes on the slowest and most unreliable c

  • I lived in Africa for about a year. We shared a 14.4k modem connection between about 10 people. It that stayed up about half the time. In another place I lived, we had about 30 people sharing a 1.5Mbps satellite link with 350MB/day quota.

    In both cases, internet access was possible for basic things like sending emails (without attachments), text browsing, etc., but the latency was so high and bandwidth so low that it took all pleasure out of internet use.

    The danger of disconnecting completely is that you'l

    • The Alt-Text for this [xkcd.com] XKCD strip offered a technical solution for achieving a similar effect using your exiting internet connection:

      After years of trying various methods, I broke this habit by pitting my impatience against my laziness. I decoupled the action and the neurological reward by setting up a simple 30-second delay I had to wait through, in which I couldn't do anything else, before any new page or chat client would load (and only allowed one to run at once). The urge to check all those sites magically vanished--and my 'productive' computer use was unaffected.

  • I can't imagine how this can work. Computers without internet aren't 1% as useful. If you think about making a Wikipedia mirror, you don't plan to cut back on computer time anyway.
    Just take the slowest connection you can find, or share with a neighbor, or use a cellphone for tethering.
  • Yeah, I had that once...it lasted about 24 hours.

    It was awful to and it involved bouts with:

    Vomiting and nausea..(mainly from having to deal with real life human beings) and fits of hopeless anxiety. The latter from not knowing anything I wanted to know in less than 100ms response time.

    Then of course there is working on a machine with a svn or git repo handy for doing latest kernel devel work or device driver debugging.

    That didn't make me sick, just very very angry.

    So, I wouldn't advise it.

    -Hackus

  • by HockeyPuck (141947) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @02:10PM (#36706128)

    Hey buddy, why not just ask anybody that's older than say 30, "What did you do before you had internet?" Since internet access from the home isn't that old, i'm sure you can find some things to do and resources to use... for example...

    Get a phone book.
    Buy a map.
    Buy a dictionary/thesaurus
    Buy stamps, envelopes and practice writing with this invention called a 'pen' or alternatively a 'pencil'.

    Do you miss playing FPS games with your friends? Try paintball.
    Miss online racing? Try go-kart racing.
    Videoconferencing/skype? Use the telephone and look at a photograph of the person you're talking to. That's a printed photo, not flickr.

    You know that area in your backyard, that's probably covered in weeds and crab grass? Try cutting it, planting something and watching it grow. It'll be more rewarding than 'gold farming', infact some of the things you can grow in your back yard are edible or attract other forms of life. Setting up a bird feeder is easy.

    Oh yeah, and since you don't have the self control to handle internet access, please cancel your cable/satellite service, since you'll fall into this pit of despair called "Jersey Shore."

    • by NF6X (725054) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @04:02PM (#36706888) Homepage

      Hey buddy, why not just ask anybody that's older than say 30, "What did you do before you had internet?" Since internet access from the home isn't that old, i'm sure you can find some things to do and resources to use.

      I'm older than 30, and I remember the pre-internet era all too well. Constant crying, and frequent pants-soiling. I couldn't even feed myself.

      Then I got my first taste of the Internet when I started college back in '86, and life got so much better!

  • Don't do it, Man!!!

    You'll go mad!!!
  • 1953 to 1993.

    Believe it or not, in the 60s, we thought we lived in the modern world.

    Of course, today I can't imagine life without internet.

  • There are some nice communities [wikipedia.org] in Pennsylvania and Indiana you may wish to consider relocating to. Low crime rate, clean living, and none of that pesky Internet stuff.
  • Yes. I've lived most of my life without the Net.

    > What major nuisances did you encounter?

    No Slashdot.

  • Why not just subscribe to a dialup service; that will curb your obsession with pr0n.
  • I already did a couple of moderations in this thread, but decided to post instead. Basically, my impression is that you must be very young. I'm only just 27 (despite a 5-digit uid, which has been mine since my freshman year in high school), but even I remember life before the internet. They have this great things called phone books, which have a listing of phone numbers of businesses and individuals. They also have maps, which tell you where shit is. In the library, they tend to hoard things called books

  • Most of what you do online can still be done the traditional way. You can still use phone books to find people and businesses, maps to find places, books for entertainment or to learn about stuff. And so on.

    The biggest hurdle will be other people's expectations. Some people simply expect you to be reachable via email, or (depending on your social circles) social networking sites, and so on.

    Maybe the best solution to that is to obtain dialup Internet. That way you need to make a conscious decision about

  • Reference Materials (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Tenebrousedge (1226584) <tenebrousedge&gmail,com> on Saturday July 09, 2011 @02:29PM (#36706276)

    The biggest challege I faced living without a home internet connection was a lack of reference materials. A text dump of wikipedia is a good start, but also grab anything you have a professional interest in, e.g. all the O'Reilly books. Also a good home repair guide, your car manual, outdoor survival guide, medical texts, home chemistry book, cookbooks, karma sutra, and if you can get a dump of instructables or about.com or wikihow, you're probably pretty good. A general selection of science, art, literature, and philosophy texts should also not go amiss. For fiction, take a dump of Project Gutenberg and/or some large ebook torrents. Calibre is software designed to manage ebooks, specifically in relation to ebook readers, which it excels at, but it is also an excellent way to catelogue a large quantity of ebooks.

    If you're into games, the biggest N64 rom was 64 MB (Conker's Bad Fur Day, Resident Evil), so every game and game system manufactured before the introduction of the Playstation should only be in the tens of gigabytes.

    It almost goes without saying that you should store information about your online contacts.

    It's difficult to predict what information you'll need. Good sources of information are rare, it's wise to have a technical library with a high degree of redundancy, i.e. multiple books on the same subject, especially if it is a subject of high interest or importance (e.g. emergency medicine). Data redundancy isn't a bad idea either.

  • I lived without Internet and phone service (one in the same at the time) for two years once. It was actually kind of nice, people new I couldn't be reached except in person or by mail, and my downtime was actual downtime. I was working on a FOSS project at the time (still in college), and if I wanted to work on it from home, I'd sneakernet the source. Then I missed important news regarding the death of my oldest niece. I quickly bought my first cell phone, got Internet at home again, and decided that I'
  • by Stormbringer (3643) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @02:33PM (#36706304)

    I've been through this, a few years back when our DSL took a hit and I had to keep our connectivity up anyway.

    Living with a slow 56k modem link between your LAN and the Internet will:

    - give you a reversible foretaste of what you're planning. Don't like dialup? You'll hate cold-turkey so much that you might not be at all productive.

    - highlight your Internet time-waster habits, because the waits for those pages to load will become obvious. This is called "rubbing your nose in it". For anything that's not essential, you *will* find better things to do, or more efficient variants on the familiar. Setting your mail-lists to daily-digest, for instance.

    - make it obvious what Internet resources you'll have difficulty doing without. Keep a log of the ones you keep going back to anyway: they're your reasons not to give it all up.

    - change some of your Internet habits right there, because there is no instant gratification, instead you have to wait for everything to finishing downloading. You can dovetail some tasks into those waits, such as, getting a cup of coffee while Google News loads, or doing the laundry while waiting for all the new-format Slashdot comments to be visible, or going shopping while a YouTube video is being sucked in for local replay. You'll get impatient and get off your ass just to keep some momentum going because the Internet isn't doing it for you anymore.

    You'll get used to prefetching bulky things you really want on hand, and using LAN storage to make it available for browsing. wget will get a lot of scripted use, particularly the "wget -c" option, because it can take most of week to get a CD ISO in. You'll learn to use local tooling to replace online stuff that isn't always there. Early on, for example, I set up a local wiki and a web calendar, to be visible to every machine on the LAN. Then I wrote CGI tooling to fill in my specific blanks. YMMV.

    You will likely do a lot of scripting to automate fetching in things you really want or really need, and transferring out your responses. A cron'd mail-check every 5 minutes will keep up a dialup link that idles-out in 15 minutes. This might include bringing the link up in the wee hours to do downloads when nobody's likely to phone, and dropping it again, ready or not, when the phone line needs to have a phone ready for use.

    Dialup will have you looking at your computer less as a source of consumed entertainment and more as a creative workspace. If that's what you're after, dropping to 56k might be enough.

       

  • Travel (Score:5, Interesting)

    by copponex (13876) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @02:36PM (#36706328) Homepage

    Maybe you are happy with your life, and the internet is the only problem, so ignore this advice if that is the case.

    However, if you decide you are stuck in a rut, I think you need to get out of your routine and cutting out the internet isn't going to help. If you are able, sell everything you own, pick a spot on the map you've always wanted to go, and get on a plane and see how long you can make it there. It's only until you let go of your comfort zone that you'll be able to change yourself.

    That was my path, of course. Maybe yours is getting a teaching degree and moving to New Orleans, or moving to a shithole apartment in the Bronx and writing a novel, or getting a job on a farm collective somewhere in Utah and rediscovering your body's ability to work, or tending bar in a pub down the street instead of your current job.

    In any case, if you are stuck in a series of safe routines that aren't providing you happiness, get out there. You only get one shot. Take it.

  • Addiction control (Score:5, Interesting)

    by xonen (774419) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @02:39PM (#36706342) Journal

    It's quite obvious your addiction is the major problem. In your post you even already mention your escapes : 'can internet at work' (and on smartphone and at friends and offline at home). Others here tell you, and other others even also say internet can no longer be socially avoided. It's like telephone has been for 100 years, TV for 50 etc.

    Now, my advise from here would be addiction control. Yes, the AA will tell alcoholics to entirely quit. Such hardly ever works. Any cigarette smoker will tell you the same. Smoke 1 cigarette after 5 years of quitting, and you'r hooked up again. Also, again, as others point out: internet is an essential part of modern society, and as such even its addiction needs special treatment.

    My [patent pending] proposal for most addicts is: Addiction control. Quit the idea of quitting altogether, as a regular thc, ethanol and nicotine user i can guarantuee you such idea is prone to fail. It comes down to some self-discipline and yes, technology makes it easy. It can help you, morally.

    Chances are you have a modern router. Find 'parental settings' or something, and set a time clock. Of course, you can overrule it (and from an addictive point of view i even say: feel free so, to do so, at any time you wish). But the netto effect is: If you do nothing (have this self discipline) your internet will be on between 19:00 and 20:00, enough to check your email after cooking, and shuts down after. In the morning dito, have a 30 minute timeframe to fetch that mail or facebook.

    On older routers, just plug in such simple 24h wall-clock.

    Also, leave pc on, purposely, to rediscover the stuff we could do with computers for 30+ years (about since home computer was invented, around 80's) without ever using internet. Yes, the good old cassette tapes etc, maybe you have nostalgia to that times? [personally, nostalgia, yes. longing back to it, no. how convenient 'just clicking download' is these days]. Going off-topic here, cause my key point was: it's about addiction control:

    Make appointments with yourself. Try to keep to them. Do NOT feel guilty when you don't keep to them, just review the appointments you made with yourself.

    gl from a junkie.

  • Well, I was born in 1976, and I spent my entire childhood without the Internet. And, so long as you can take care of any professional online needs (stuff for the office, etc.), you should be fine.

    In fact, your biggest problem may be other people in your social circle being too used to contacting you by email or over the 'net, and having to remind them to contact you by phone instead. But, really, I have a feeling that if you have no problems going back to basics (like newspapers for news, etc.), you shoul

  • I think one of the reasons people spend all that time reading stuff on the internet is that at some level it is a replacement for human contact. When you shut off the internet, prepare to feel isolated, and have an urge to talk or be with someone else. Prepare to work hard to increase how much time you spend socializing with others to deal with this.
  • Your government and press would rather you did not use the internet as a source of information. Some of it is beyond their control and may say things that They do not want you to know.

    Throughout the existence of the internet, we have been told about all the bad stuff on it. It has varied from The Anarchists Cookbook, to child porn, to conspiracies to crime and fraud and so on. All things that would also plague you if you walked through the wrong parts of town at the wrong times and looked like a suitable

  • by andersen (10283) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @02:54PM (#36706484) Homepage

    George Washington had no internet access -- and now he is dead.

  • by RobinH (124750) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @03:13PM (#36706598) Homepage

    I was reading somewhere that someone with a similar problem implemented a 5 minute delay before he could connect to the internet. The delay filtered out the times he went online just for procrastination, or just "because it was there". I find a lot of times I open a browser because I'm waiting for some long-running process (like 25 seconds) and my mind wanders. Even if I had a 60 second delay, I'd probably do that a lot less.

    Similarly, Paul Graham said he uses two computers - one for coding and one that sits across the room connected to the internet. He has to physically get up and move to go online, so it has to be worth doing it. That's enough to block out the procrastination type stuff. More Reading. [paulgraham.com]

  • by npsimons (32752) * on Saturday July 09, 2011 @03:33PM (#36706678) Homepage Journal

    Asking the Internet how to go without the Internet? Well, I've heard of weirder things. To explain my subject line, though, don't take it negatively: what I mean by perspective is that you need to take some time off, a vacation, not just from work, but from the Internet, and possibly civilization in general. Go backpacking somewhere where there is no cell service, and don't take a satphone with you. At least a week if you can manage it. Take some time to clear your head and ask yourself: do you really need to forego the Internet completely at home, or could you just make some adjustments to your habits and ways of thinking that will help turn the Internet into a vital tool and put control of your experience of it back in your hands.

  • by ryzvonusef (1151717) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @03:53PM (#36706816) Journal

    http://xkcd.com/597/ [xkcd.com]

    I give you an hour :p

  • by mevets (322601) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @04:05PM (#36706904)

    I've decided that alcohol is no longer a positive influence on my life, and am no longer going to drink continuously. To prepare for this, I am planning to stock a small cellar with wine, beer and some specialty liquor.
    I'll still be drinking at work, and can frequent bars and taverns.
    My question is thus: does anybody have any experience living without a steady stream of alcohol? What major nuisances did you encounter? What and how much should I put in my cellar? Is there anything I'm overlooking?

  • Yes (Score:4, Funny)

    by Legion303 (97901) on Saturday July 09, 2011 @06:47PM (#36707820) Homepage

    "Is there anything I'm overlooking?"

    You're overlooking the irony of asking Slashdot.

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