Language Selection

English French German Italian Portuguese Spanish

10 things the Internet has ruined and five things it hasn't

Filed under
Web

For some people, the Internet is the killer app -- literally. From newspapers and the yellow pages to personal privacy and personal contact, the Net has been accused of murdering, eviscerating, ruining, and obliterating more things than the Amazing Hulk. Some claims are more true than others, but the Net certainly has claimed its share of scalps.

Here are 10 things the Net is making virtually extinct, plus five that have flourished.

1. Trust in encyclopedias

When I was a kid, if something was in the Encyclopedia Britannica (or even Grolier's), it was true. Now -- thanks to Wikipedia -- having "encyclopedic knowledge" of a topic isn't as impressive when there's a good chance most of what you think you know was concocted by a 12-year-old. After a 2005 study by the British journal Nature showed Britannica and Wikipedia to be equally inaccurate, faith in all encyclopedias plummeted. Britannica attacked that study's methodology as "fatally flawed," but it was too late.

Also dead: trust in studies of encyclopedias.

2. Barroom arguments

It used to be you could kill many hours and even more brain cells drinking beer and arguing over arcane trivia. Who was a more fearsome slugger, Babe Ruth or Hank Aaron? Who'd win a one-on-one match between Kobe Bryant and Doctor J? (Sorry Kobe -- we love ya man, but in 1972 the Doc was unstoppable.) Now whenever there's a question of fact, somebody just whips out a smartphone and does a search on Google or dials up Wolfram Alpha and runs a statistical analysis. Where's the fun in that?

3. Your old flame




More in Tux Machines

Ubuntu Kylin 15.04 Beta 2 Is Now Available for Download - Screenshot Tour

After announcing the Ubuntu 15.04 Final Beta and Kubuntu 15.04 Beta 2, it is now time to take a look at the second and last Beta release of the upcoming Ubuntu Kylin 15.04 (Vivid Vervet) operating system that has been designed especially for the Chinese Ubuntu Linux community. Read more Also: Ubuntu MATE 15.04 (Vivid Vervet) Beta 2 Switches to Systemd - Screenshot Tour Ubuntu 15.04 (Vivid Vervet) Final Beta Officially Released - Screenshot Tour

Kubuntu 15.04 Beta 2 Released with KDE Plasma 5 as Default Desktop - Screenshot Tour

Today’s announcement for Ubuntu 15.04 (Vivid Vervet) Final Beta also mentioned the immediate availability for download and testing of Kubuntu 15.04 Beta 2, an official Ubuntu flavor built around the modern and attractive KDE Plasma 5 desktop environment, as well as the KDE Applications project. Read more Also: Xubuntu 15.04 Beta 2 Released, Offers a Neat Xfce 4.12 Experience - Screenshot Tour

today's leftovers

New GNOME 3.16 Getting a Lot of Attention for Improvements

Red Hat garnered much of the press today with the release of their fourth quarter 2015 earnings report last night. Red Hat stock prices rose today after the announcement on this a down day on Wall Street and continued to gain a bit in after hours trading. The other big winner today was GNOME 3.16, whose headlines began yesterday with its release announcement. Just what is causing all the buzz? Read more