Tech writer Paul Miller just spent 12 months going cold turkey from the Internet. He thought it would make his life happier. More productive. More "real." "I was wrong," he admits on the Verge. "My goal, as a technology writer, would be to discover what the internet had done to me over the years." writes Miller of the experiment's noble goals. "I wouldn't just become a better human, I would help us all to become better humans. Once we understood the ways in which the internet was corrupting us, we could finally fight back."
At first, going offline did make his life better, he says. He lost weight, churned out articles, wrote half a novel, and read Greek literature. "Those first months felt so good because I felt the absence of the pressures of the internet," he writes. "My freedom felt tangible." But once being unwired became the norm, he fell back into old habits, finding other ways to procrastinate and becoming increasingly isolated from the world. What he learned, he says, is that the Internet doesn't exist in isolation from society or genuine human interactions. "The internet isn't an individual pursuit, it's something we do with each other," he writes. "The internet is where people are." Click to read the full column. (Read more Paul Miller stories.)