To show you just how the online world has drastically improved our lives at the present, here are the top 10 things you can do online now that you couldn’t do in the past!
#1. Listen to music you don’t own
Back in the day before streaming websites existed, you could only listen to music via CDs, cassettes or radio. Going to a record store (RIP, Rock Corner) to purchase your favourite band’s latest album was an event and burning the CD to your desktop meant you finally owned your beloved songs.
But now with Spotify, billions of songs and discographies of every artiste can be streamed with just a quick search.
#2. Watch TV shows you missed
Remember when you would actually rush to the couch at 9pm on the dot to watch your favourite show on TV?
That’s a thing of the past now with Netflix and the like, where Stranger Things and Bojack Horseman reign and you can watch them any time you like. That does, however, remove the element of anticipation from your viewing, but we’d take instant access over fixed air times and commercials any day.
#3. Start a business in minutes
Running your own business used to require jumping through many hoops — securing loans, looking for investors and getting licenses and permits.
All that hassle for a brick-and-mortar business still exists now. However, online businesses are as easy as setting up an Instagram or Carousell account. All you need to do is take a few photos, write some promotional copy and click post. It’s as easy as that!
#4. Keep in touch with friends and their daily routines
Keeping in touch with acquaintances back then actually required work and effort. You had to write letters, send long emails or arrange coffee dates over a phone call.
But now that there’s social media, there’s no need for that; scrolling through Instagram and viewing their stories or posts will show you all you need to know about what’s happening in their lives. A mere reply to those updates will allow you to easily offer compliments, ask questions and maintain your friendship.
#5. Translate text instantly
No more fiddling with pocket language books while you’re travelling the world. Services like Google Translate and Reverso instantly translate any text you input (with passable results), which makes things easier when you have to ask people which direction the loo is. Embarrassment, begone!
#6. Follow news events in real time
While it was possible to be glued to the TV screen watching news reporters announce updates on high-profile cases, instant information straight from the horse’s mouth can now be obtained from Twitter and other social media platforms — directly from journalists and civilians who are at the crime scene or event.
#7. Build your own website
HTML knowledge and an understanding of coding used to be essential if you wanted your own website or blog light years ago. In the present day, website builders such as WordPress, Weebly and Wix make it unbelievably easy to come up with professional-looking sites, all without extensive coding know-how.
#8. Express yourself through GIFs and memes
Back in the day, all people had to express themselves in everyday conversation were mere words — how dull. Now, you’ve got the inexhaustible platform that is the internet to supply you with hilarious GIFs and memes that match every emotion and expression you have.
Unhappy with your friends for acting on impulse? Send a “y u do dis” image with a sad cat. Elated about your excellent results? We say go for a happy picture of a cute animal jumping for joy.
#9. Watch a live concert at home
Missed the purchase window for those hard-to-get concert tickets? Fret not, just point your mouse to concert live stream sources like LiveList and Qello to watch your favourite band perform (just try not to cry over the fact that you couldn’t breathe the same air as them).
#10. Visit a virtual education fair
You’ve probably been to your fair share of education fairs, so you know the hassle of getting there (parking problems!), the swarm of people milling about (sardine can similarities!) and plain old exhaustion after checking out the many booths.
Skip all the hassle and register for our EduAdvisor Virtual Education Fair instead! Get the opportunity to download brochures from a range of colleges and universities, chat live with education counsellors and win scholarships and prizes — all without having to travel.
And there you have it — 10 things you can do online now that you couldn’t in the past. There’s no doubt that technology will continue to advance, increasing convenience and efficiency for people at the same time. So embrace this evolution and let it make your life easier.