473: No Electronics

If no electronic device worked for 24 hours, what would you do?


Full episode script

Back in episode 338, we explored the idea of digital detoxing – taking the time to take yourself offline on purpose. I would highly recommend going back and listening to that episode for some very surprising history about the sociology of technology.

But – what if you didn’t have an option? Should the power go out or something magical happen that completely eliminates all electronics for 24 hours, how would you handle it? It’s an interesting intellectual exercise that I started pondering when we didn’t have power for a few days.

Of course, most people think about this kind of question under the question of an electromagnetic pulse. In October of 2017, there was a report put out stating that it would be possible for North Korea to kill 90% of the US population with an EMP.

This isn’t true. As Business Insider puts it:

According to experts, the idea of North Korea using an EMP to attack the US is ridiculous, laughable, and totally unlikely. The US’s own Defense Technical Information Center concluded in 2008 that an EMP in reality couldn’t actually even stop a car from driving more than three times out of 37.

So – in all likelihood, no electronics functioning at all likely won’t happen unless you’re in a situation where no batteries or electronics are available. That said, it may not be the worst thing in the world to think of some alternates.

This script may vary from the actual episode transcript.