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January 15, 2004

15 nanoseconds of fame

Dan Gillmor came to my going-on-the-road party last week and wrote a short piece about the project the business section of the local paper:

http://www.mercurynews.com/mld/mercurynews/business/7707528.htm

Posted on Wed, Jan. 14, 2004
Tech veteran to explore what life is like outside cyberspace
By Dan Gillmor
Mercury News Technology Columnist


News and views, culled and edited from my online eJournal (www.dangillmor.com/ blog):

Going Offline: Steve Cisler has been online since 1985. As of Sunday, and for at least the next several months, he'll be cutting his direct links to cyberspace.

Cisler isn't joining some technological resistance movement. He's a well-respected Information Age activist, including a nine-year stint, from 1988 to 1997, as network outreach manager at Apple Computer's Advanced Technology Group. He's participated in or led many projects, for a variety of organizations, to help people use this vast new resource.

But cyberspace is still an experience for a small minority of humanity. Even in the developed nations, countless millions of people haven't gone online, for a variety of reasons including cost, education (literacy), imprisonment, fear or even loathing of technology.

To better understand how they deal with an offline existence, Cisler says he needs to share their experience, albeit temporarily -- ``to see how someone who's been online a third of his life -- how well he can function offline,'' says the 61-year-old San Jose resident.

And he needs to hear from them directly. So he's planning a road trip through California's Central Valley, then to Arizona, New Mexico and Texas. Later he'll visit Mexico, and more distant destinations are likely but not yet certain. In each place, he'll observe and interview people who never go online.

Cisler isn't giving up technology entirely. He'll be carrying a computer and a mobile phone.

He'll also be sending updates on his travels to a friend, Steve Crandall, who will post Cisler's trip reports on a Weblog called ``unconnected'' (http://tingilinde.typepad.com/unconnected). Given Cisler's history, his observations and commentary should be fascinating.

10:48 AM in steve's letters | Permalink

Comments

You got yourself mentioned on the BBC website!

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/magazine/3420917.stm

Posted by: Al at Jan 23, 2004 12:08:51 PM

God's speed - It's hell out there!

Robin Hull
London, UK

Posted by: Robin Hull at Jan 24, 2004 3:31:23 AM