I know electrons travel at the speed of light, but still….

Technology is wonderful, but I'm fairly used to it, and it's rare these days that I'm surprised by it. Today, I was surprised by something.

My wife has her Yahoo! Mail Japan account set to alert her via cell-phone text messaging when she receives a new email message. Thus, when she gets a new email, her cell phone eventually chimes. This is pretty standard stuff.

So, when I sent her a message about a friend's blog with some spectacular photos, I wasn't surprised to hear her phone chime. I wasn't surprised that my keystrokes on my Mac laptop in my living room in Kyoto went via WiFi to my home network, then up the fiber link to my provider, across the Pacific to my server in California, and then as an email message back off across the Pacific to Yahoo! Japan, which then sent an email to my wife's cell provider, which then traveled the cell-phone system (I have no clue about that) to a cell near us, then to her phone, and voila, the chime.

What surprised me is that it took three seconds from my hitting “send” to the chime. Wow.

(Today is a day full of surprises; my brother was surprised by something as well)


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