Ask that nice man...

Why Is The Internet So Slow?

I can't stand the World Wide Wait!

The Internet is too slow!

Are you kidding?


Even with a lousy modem and a poor connection, the Internet is hands down the absolutely fastest way to obtain information, unless you live above a public library.

It just seems slow because we naturally compare it to what it looks like: television.

The Internet is not television. 

Someday it may provide information faster than television, too, but for now, here are a few tips to help you deal with the most popular Internet activities, efficiently and for maximum enjoyment:

What is the key to searching on the World Wide Web?
Search non-
There is an art and a science to searching the Web. It can be very frustrating -- especially if you pursue one key word or phrase, or are doggedly looking for one particular item of data. Try a non-linear search path, alternating keyword and topic searches with catalog-style research that narrows in on the topic of interest. If you find a site with a list of links that looks promising, explore it. Keep branching. Remember to click-right and use "Open in New Window" when you want to explore a link while leaving the current page (e.g. a list of promising links) open. The menu command File New Window (Ctrl-N) also works.
And I suppose the key to browsing is to browse non-linearly?

Time flies when you're having fun online. 

Don't lose your beauty sleep.

Open multiple windows. Just hit Ctrl-N (or File New Window) to open a second window on the current page.  Then follow a link or open a favorite to make the two windows diverge paths.  From then on, use the taskbar or Alt-Tab to switch among the windows. On a good fast PC with adequate memory, you can open five or more Explorer windows without penalty. Keep the data flowing while you take time to read and enjoy the pages you find.

Don't wait. If a page makes you wait, switch to another page, or right-click on a link to follow that link in a new Window. It's called multi-tasking, and it's the key to beating the waiting game. 

Admittedly, it helps if you enjoy that relatively low-bandwidth activity called reading.  Text can flow over a modem much faster than you can read it.  So interleaving reading and admiring visuals makes for a well-rounded Web adventure.

Next, expand your multitasking beyond the Web.  Toggle to your IRC windows and check on the chat rooms -- did anyone come into #acme yet? No, well leave it open and toggle back to the Web page. Keep a newsgroup open in Outlook Express -- you can briskly read messages one at a time, or hit Tools Download Newsgroup and return your Web browsing while OE retrieves them in bulk.  Still nothing ready to view?  Then use these few seconds to scan and delete spam from your inbox. Whatever.

If you reach a dead end, enter a new link by hand (hit Ctrl-L to open a new Location), or return again to your history or favorites lists.

Or borrow someone else's list of interesting links.

Here, for example, are some nice links.

This is all very well, but I still say the Internet is too slow.
Then maybe you are ready to consider some higher-speed alternatives.