JUNE 2006 IN

Moving to Cyberspace

It’s no mistake that “space” is part of “cyberspace.” The world of ideas can let your imagination roam over an area that seems much larger than your immediate physical surroundings. Of course cyberspace could never take the place of physical space. Or could it? Think of a few of the ways in which ideas and access to information are already reducing the need for various kinds of space.

These and other changes chip away at the amount of physical space people need, and at the same time, similar changes are reducing the period of time during which people need to occupy a space. In the old days, a business startup would set up an office long before they started to do any business just so people could contact them by mail and telephone. Now that e-mail messages and telephone calls can go anywhere, new businesses can postpone the need to occupy physical office space until much later in the process. This also means that businesses can often get started with a much thinner bankroll than they would have needed in the past.

Having vast areas of cyberspace at your disposal doesn’t mean you should cancel the lease on your one-bedroom apartment, at least not yet. But the information age is chipping away at the need for physical space, and as cyberspace continues to unfold, you can look for new ways to save money and streamline the things you do by replacing physical space with cyberspace.

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