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Unformatted text preview: mbolized by the computer nerd sitting glazed­eyed before his computer screen in a basement, attic, bedroom, or office cubicle. While this scene is a caricature, of course, it’s true that practically everybody who uses email or surfs the Internet does so alone, with only his or her computer for company. And, to the extent that computer use increases the amount of time we collectively spend in solitary activities, it increases the amount of time we spend separated from our fellow humans. On the other hand, technology has been a wonderful aid in bringing people together, or, in many cases, back together. Speaking for myself, I can say that I have become connected with quite a number of people via email with whom I might never have spoken otherwise. These include old friends with whom I had fallen out of the habit of writing regular letters but with whom I now correspond regularly because of the ease with which email can be sent and delivered. A second way in which the new technology has brought people together is by allowing individuals who have common interests to make contact with one another. It is possible to fin...
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