The Internet Future

As the Internet was created, the inventors did not realize that it would make a huge transformation to the world’s geography, democracy and humanity. No longer are people thousands of miles away, today they’re just two clicks and a button away. No longer can the government hide and deny public opinion. No longer are people oblivious to the world outside of their country.

Last week I was able to let a stranger I met for a day and haven’t seen for two years know that she changed my life forever. As I was studying for my midterms, I looked up to notice five smiling faces.
The colorful picture hanging on my corkboard is from a day that Adriana, my mentor from the USC Calis Leadership program introduced me to my passion and major today, international studies.

She’s an optimistic, kind-hearted person who spoke of her love for one day becoming a philanthropist aiding the cause of providing an education for every needy child. She became my inspiration and sparked my interest into what I would do in college. Looking at that picture, I found it insane that Adriana has no idea how she impacted my life. Just then, I began searching my old emails and found a conversation that happened two years ago. 400 words, a few minutes and two clicks later I was able to reconnect with Adriana!

The technological revolution doesn’t just stop at reconnecting with old friends. The economic state our country is in with trillions of dollars in debt, crazy gas prices and high unemployment rates is truly … depressing.
The only thing even more depressing is how many people don’t vote due to missing the registration deadline. Living in one of the rare countries that posses full democracy, it is so very important to vote.
This year for the first time ever, a short application that takes a matter of minutes allowed people to register to vote online! Furthermore, the Internet allows us to watch presidential debates live, learn about the candidates and discuss with our peers to vote for the best future.

This year, California broke the record and has more registered voters than ever before. 18.2 million Californians are ready to have their voices heard on Nov. 6.
Thanks to the Internet, our lazy generation comprised the majority of the population who chose to register online. Pat yourselves on the back and high five the Internet for making the US more politically involved.
The US has not just become politically aware, but socially aware as well. In colonial times, all countries including ours were oblivious to the world outside of their safe walls. Immigrants with different colored skin were treated horribly and interracial marriages were illegal. Today the international political system is far more connected and liberal than it ever has been.

In the recent years, a new trend of non-governmental, non-profit organizations has hit the world. Faster than ever, humanitarian relief, Non-governmental Organizations to help the cause of sex trafficking, female infanticides, hunger, human rights and more are multiplying. The millions of NGOs have very much to do with the Internet making people socially aware. The Internet is the reason globalization is not just a theory anymore. Today we connect with people from all over the world, learning their stories, and yearn to help in whichever way we can.

Just the thought that so many people care about others who they have no relation to besides being part of the same species is comforting.
Humanity has evolved like no other with the Internet playing a huge role in it. The creators of the Internet forever gave every average human the tool to shape their life and impact other people’s lives as well.

Maria T. Khan is a first-year international studies major. She can be reached at khanmt@uci.edu.