The microwave at the Institute is broken. It appears that someone cooked some metal because there's a scorch mark in the back. It's been a real blow to our fair youth. All day they came to me in despair, "How am I supposed to heat up my lunch?" When I suggested they can use more old-timey means, like the oven or stove, they seemed truly dejected. But any kid who tried it would walk out of the kitchen like a super hero. We're tapping into our pioneer roots over there.
This got us on the topic of technology and what we can and cannot live without. Like, what's the farthest back you could go before you felt like you were living in the dark ages. For me, it's whenever flushing toilets came into existence. I would not be able to abide by chamber pots or outhouses. So about the late 1800s. (You guys, you have GOT to read the Wikipedia page on flushing toilets. It is a wealth of interesting facts!) This is fortunate because I would also need transportation other than a horse and buggy for long distances. I don't think I could handle the slow pace of a wagon train.
This got me thinking about the internet and how the majority of people I associate with on a daily basis have never lived in a time when the internet did not exist. I sent my first email my freshman year of college so I have many pre-internet years to recall. They weren't bad times. We were all quite happy in our ignorance. That's the nice thing about technology, you don't know what you're missing until it's there.
Except that I am keenly aware that we don't have jet packs. Weren't we supposed to have them by now? NASA announced last week that it had a successful go with a thing-a-majiggy that looks to be the early, early, early, early hints of warp drive. This is a plus for humanity because we're never going to get anywhere in space exploration without warp drive. I had several conversations at work with like-minded nerds about this. All of whom were born after the internet.
I'm rambling. To sum up: warp drives and flushing toilets appear to be all I need.