A few days ago, Borepatch offered up an observation on the human condition. More than looking for answer to the posed question, he was just looking to drive home the fact that most of are carrying around computing power and access to information that would have been unimaginable in the 1950's. Heck...it would have seemed pretty unimaginable to me in the 1980's, when I was happily playing Lunar Lander on a green screened Commodore 64.
And we just take it soooo much for granted. The most constructive things I typically use my phone for is looking up recipes while I'm at the store, and using IMDB to play the 'How Old is That Celebrity' game. Even at home with the computer or Kindle Fire at my disposal, there isn't much research done.
Part of that, though, is the difficulty of actually trying to USE the internet for doing useful research. Yes...'the entirety of information known to man' might be out there...but you have to work to find the useful stuff. Even the most innocent of search terms can lead one into a morass of naughty things, which is bad. Almost as bad is narrowing down your search enough to avoid that, but then just encountering a trail of links, and broken links that don't get you to exactly what you want...or references a wikipedia page that you aren't certain you want to trust or not.
Case in point. One of the things my wife and I want to do to our new house Sooner Rather Than Later, is install a few fruit trees in the back yard. With me not knowing much about fruit trees other than their goal in life is to grow fruit, I thought I would take advantage of a quiet afternoon to research things on the internet.
I was eventually able to be specific enough that I found the WSU Extension office page, but even then, most of the good stuff was a few blurbs that led to their page selling pamphlets. Time wise I probably would have been WAY better off driving to the library and doing some hands on research.
They frown on you doing that in your underwear though.