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On the 30th Anniversary of the Internet: Are We Moving Toward the Light?

March 17th, 2019 by Michael Dyet


Hmmm, is the 30the birthday of the Internet a time to push pause and gather our thoughts?

Before we ponder that question, a clarification is necessary. We use the words Internet and Web interchangeably. But they are not one and the same.

The Internet by definition is a global network of computers that are able to communicate with one another. It dates all the way back to the 1960s when ARPANET was developed by the U.S. military. The Web, which is 30 years young, is the streamlined way people like you and I access the Internet. English engineer and computer scientist Tim Berners-Lee is the father of it.

As I contemplated writing this post, I struggled to decide what tact I would take. I did not want it to be another Technology Grinch article. I considered framing it from the traditional “the good, the bad and the ugly” perspective. But that seemed too simplistic.

I have to be honest. A part of me wishes the whole thing had never come about. The world was a whole lot simpler before we opened that virtual door. But I have no doubt bygone generations said the same thing when the first Industrial Revolution in the late 1700s transitioned us from hand production methods to machines.

Leadership guru John C. Maxwell coined the phrase: Change is inevitable. Growth is optional. We cannot stop change from happening. It is the nature of the world to constantly evolve. It simply cannot be static. We have the choice to grow with it or be left behind. Being left behind, although it has a renegade appeal, is not a wise choice.

By that line of thinking, the arrival of the Internet and the Web was inevitable. There was no perhaps we should not go down this road moment. It came along as an inevitable consequence of the advancement of human knowledge and ingenuity.

So it is pointless to ask whether the Web is a good thing or a bad thing. The more important question, which is entirely within our control, is: How can we use it to the make the world and our lives better? I believe we have never stopped to ask that question.

We have become so enamoured with technology, and the seemingly limitless possibilities it presents, that we default to believing that whatever is possible is by definition necessary and good. This can be a dangerous point of view to adopt. It leads to simply because we can technology which can become a runaway train with no driver.

So what I am asking? My plea is that we carefully, and I dare say prayerfully, consider where each new technological advance will lead us. Will it make our world better, for everyone – not just a chosen few – or will it take us down roads that end up at dead ends or points of no return.

One of the most profound metaphors for change is moving from darkness to light. We change because we see the best way ahead and move toward the light. Let us keep our eyes open and ensure that we consciously choose where technology is taking us rather than just being along for the ride wherever it might end up.

Now Available Online from Amazon, Chapters Indigo or Barnes & Noble: Hunting Muskie, Rites of Passage – Stories by Michael Robert Dyet

~ Michael Robert Dyet is also the author of Until the Deep Water Stills – An Internet-enhanced Novel which was a double winner in the Reader Views Literary Awards 2009. Visit Michael’s website at or the novel online companion at

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