Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Digital Armageddon


At the heart of much speculative fiction (and fiction in general) is a question. What if? On Tuesdays I like to throw one out there and see what you make of it. Do with it as you please. If a for-instance is not specified, feel free to interpret that instance as you wish. And if you find this becomes a novel-length answer, I'd appreciate a thank you in the acknowledgements ;)

What if all our digital information (Internet and files on our own computers) was wiped out and irretrievable? 

Today's A to Z Challenge post brought to you by the letter...


41 comments:

  1. Oh good question. Probably a good reminder to have some type of a backup paper trail on some things. I think it would also be a disaster with so much already being digitalized, etc. Wouldn't want to even think of a possibility like this.

    betty

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    1. March 31st was International Backup Awareness Day. I had already scheduled this question by then, and thought either really good timing or just off timing.

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  2. Time for a meltdown!
    Glad I print out all of my stories.

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  3. I think that would be so hard! Literally that would create major craziness in the world. For myself I don't even think I realize how much I have come to rely on having everything at my fingertips! Just thinking about it gives me anxiety!

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  4. I think I could go back to life without the Internet but I wonder about the current generations who have grown up with it. I lost everything on a computer once. It wasn't fun trying to retrieve it! But, thank goodness we did!

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    1. I wouldn't want to go back to life before the internet. We didn't know what we were missing (both good and bad).

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  5. I often think about that in the line of my own job, I cannot for the life of me understand how translators worked before there were dictionaries and references around the web, especially since centuries old books were much more difficult to translate than the today's ones

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  6. I am printing out copies of all my WIPs right this second.

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  7. I am screaming in horror at the thought of losing literally everything. Too scary, Liz!

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  8. Well, I always have backups and drives that I keep in the safe. My family photos are there too. If all that disappeared too - devastated :(

    A-Z Challenge no 1334

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    1. But in this scenario, anything digital, even backups, would be effected.

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  9. It would present a challenge, and no doubt information would be lost, but I think we'd be up an running pretty quick. Even the hackers would want to help get the internet back...which could make for an interesting scenario...perhaps.

    I have all my old stuff on paper, but all my new stuff is on my computer or saved onto cd. If all that info got corrupted, I'd be horrified. Hmm...maybe I should printing...just in case.

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  10. Might be the best thing to ever happen to us...if, ha-ha, for a brief time only---say, a day? Love my technology!!

    Pioneer Women in Aviation A-Z


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  11. Sadly, this is not a science fiction type question - it could happen all too easily. As long as a generation that lived much of its life without the Internet (i.e. anyone about 45 or older)is still on Earth, I think we could make our way through it. But it wouldn't be easy. Alana ramblinwitham.blogspot.com

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    1. I'd downgrade that to about 40ish. I'm not quite 45, and I made it through high school without the internet. And college.

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  12. That would be a huge loss! SO much info is kept online now. Even our photos and personal correspondence.

    Yvonne V

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  13. I'd hope that for essential services, there would be a backup, but I doubt there is. We have had planning for earthquake disasters in our area for a while, but not really for a computer wipe. . .scary thought.

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    1. Yeah, emergency services would be crippled, wouldn't they?

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  14. NO biggie. That literally happens to be me like every 3 years or so.

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    1. Yeah, but what if you couldn't get it back?

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  15. Years ago, that happened when an old laptop of mine suddenly shut down one day. We took it to one of those "laptop doctors," but they couldn't retrieve anything. So that's why I try my best to remember to back stuff up.

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    1. But what if the "back ups" weren't working as well? (Nothing digital survived.)

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  16. Liz,

    What a horrible thought! I back up everything on an external drive, so I'd have most of my files. I would really miss the internet though. I Google stuff all the time.

    Sunni

    http://sunni-survivinglife.blogspot.com/

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    1. Ah, but *all* digital files are corrupted. So, nothing electronic would work.

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  17. We might be goi g back to 1975:) we just relrean what we grew up with. This would be much harder for the young people

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    1. It's interesting how many things that started in the '70s are still with us...

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  18. If there was a solar flare it could happen. We'd have to all be Amish. Gawd help the teenagers.

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    1. Oh, the whining! I can imagine it now.

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  19. I'm sure it's in the works. Someone has us targeted. I agree with Pinky...the Amish seem like a happy folk.

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  20. I was thinking about how this has already happened to me a few years ago. Hard drive and back up were both corrupted at the same time. :( And it would be $1000+ to get back files assuming anything was retrievable. That was a hard pill to swallow considering I was losing everything from approximately 5 years of my digital life. (Perhaps more b/c when transferring files to the computer when it was new, I deleted a bunch!)

    Anyway, I see in your comments that you meant: what would become of the world if this happened to everyone everywhere all at once?

    And I have no idea! That would be scary. I think there'd be a lot of re-learning.


    Do you think people would try to rebuild electronics in new and better ways? In ways where that kind of information wipe out wouldn't happen again? … Do you think it's possible to do that? Or are we always at risk?

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    1. Ouch! That's awful.

      I wonder what we would do as a world, then. Good questions.

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  21. ohhh I need to think about this one, actually does fit in with the novel I am writing :)

    Thank you for your visit to my blog, have a great A to Z!
    Sylvia van Bruggen

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    1. Oh, I'm kinda afraid of that story...

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  22. I would cry. I would really cry. lol Last year we had internet issues for over a week with no access to that part of my e-life though I could access saved files at least. But it was a nightmare not being able to get into accounts to pay them, deal with social media (it's my actual job), emails, etc for so long. Plus most of my recipes are saved online plus my music files and my tv shows are linked to online. It was horrible being so disconnected.

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