My tech husband and I created a set of cards we use for marketing our cloud business. The last card in the set presents a question: Are you at the corner of no and where? Of course, the questions sets up Cloudtippers as the answer to their lostness. While Cloudtippers cannot wave the magic salvation wand, we can help others find you and make it possible for you to do business operations [almost] anywhere.
We discovered we were at the corner of no and where, at least internet-wise, when visiting his family in Oklahoma. For some reason, most likely a break in AT&T’s data contract with the local provider, we were not able to get any internet access via our iPhones in Guymon, Oklahoma. Thankfully, we were able to plug in at his parent’s business to service the few client needs, and my blog, that arose while in Oklahoma.
This got me to thinking how dependent I’ve become on the internet for communicating (email, blog, Google voice, facebook) and information (news, reviews, products, etc.). A lot of my life exists online.
The global economy has been in the making since trading and shipping opened up countries ability to conduct commerce hundreds of years ago. The global community catapulted with the internet opening up in the mid-1990s with websites and email. Prior to the internet, the global community existed through penpals (remember those from school days?) and travel (for those fortunate enough to have money or able to go on exchange programs).
With everything moving global, the world really has become a smaller place. The internet has opened up all sorts of communities for people to communicate, exchange ideas, work on projects without ever meeting face-to-face. On our road trip we listened to tech podcasts. It was fascinating hearing about members of the tech community who collaborated on projects for years before ever meeting each other in person at a conference!
The other interesting facet of this phenomenon is while the world is becoming smaller through the internet, our local communities are becoming more isolated. When we lived in California, I didn’t know any of my neighbors. Not only did I not know them, I never saw them! I knew there was a family on the other side of our fence because I could hear their twins screaming every night!
Now that we’re almost through the holiday season (I’ll fill you in on the official close of the holiday season Thursday, January 6, 2011), I thought we’d explore the concept of community this month.
American theologian, author, educator, civil rights leader Howard Thurman said something interesting about community in his 1971 book The Search for Common Ground; An Inquiry Into The Basis Of Man’s Experience Of Community:
Community cannot feed for long on itself; it can only flourish where always the boundaries are giving way to the coming of others from beyond them – unknown and undiscovered brothers.
Once you get beyond the archaic sentence structure and gender language, what do you think?