Wednesday, October 28, 2009

First moment of reckoning

A few weeks ago I installed TimeTracker to find out how many hours I spend online. Now is the moment of reckoning. Since October 6, I have used the internet:
102 hours on my netbook
57 hours on my desktop
About 15 hours on AR's laptop. A guesstimate, since I didn't install the tracking program there.

174 hours in 22 days = 7.9 hours per day.

Now let's add in the cell phone data usage. I use about 160mb per month, according to my last three bills.  Per AT&T, these are the data loads for my online activities:

Typical Web page look-up: 150KB
Check the weather forecast on 25-75KB (I'll go with 25, since it's just a rare glance -- I live in Southern California, remember?)
Check AOL email and read three messages: 60KB (I don't have AOL, but close enough)
Update Facebook status: 25-50KB (I'll go with 25, since I rarely do this on the phone)
Visit and access the headlines in the "Health" section: 20-40 KB (I'll average that out to 30, since I'm on news sites a lot, but I tend to read articles the whole way rather than reloading constantly)

Trouble is, I'm not sure how much time that translates into. Does anyone know multivariable calculus? Let's just say I'm on my smart phone -- using data, that is -- a total of one hour per day. That's for quick email checks when I'm stuck in traffic, reading the news during rush hour, looking up statistics about accidents in rush hour caused by cell phone usage, and, occasionally, doing everything else I do online when I'm not stuck in traffic.

I secretly fear one hour is a conservative estimate, but no internet-quitting project would be complete without a dash of self-delusion, would it?

So, total time online as of October 28, 2009:
8.9 hours per day.
Is that bad?

Does that smell like an addict to you?

Does it make you want to wrap me up in a straitjacket and write "HOPELESS' on my forehead? Because if it does, I would like to meet you. We have a similar sense of humor and I think we'd hit it off.

But really, crude jokes aside, I think it's a perfectly reasonable amount of time. Don't you?

You know what else I think? It's time to go offline, for one day.

Just to see what happens.

Tomorrow. No internet, no cell phone data. From midnight to midnight.

If you don't hear from me Friday, send a medical examiner.

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