FLASHBACK: What college was like before the Internet

College is a unique period in life that many people cherish well into their golden years.

The first taste of independent living, the new friends and the late nights all combine for an unforgettable, if hazy, experience. 

But college was very different just a few years ago, back when the Internet was not yet a standard fixture on campuses. For students at the time, the daily routine — from the classroom to the dorm room — required mastering a variety of practices and customs that might seem bizarre to modern eyes.

Travel back with us to the early 1990s….

Phoning home: There was no Skype. No FaceTime. No cell phones, in fact. So students waited in line for a payphone. At the sound of the special dial tone, they tapped in a lengthy string of numbers from a long-distance calling card.

Class notes: Laptops? No such thing. During class, students would quickly scribble down every nugget of wisdom that came out of the professor's mouth and pray they could decipher it later.

Communicating with profs: There were no weekly email message or online chats. Students either waited to catch their eye after class, or signed up for office hours (which still exist).

Late-night snacks: The closest thing to today's delivery apps was ordering a pizza by phone, and hoping you didn't get a busy signal because everyone else had the same idea. The only other option was finding someone to drive you to a late-night diner or burger joint.

NOW WATCH: Tech Insider videos

Want to read a more in-depth view on the trends influencing Australian business and the global economy? BI / Research is designed to help executives and industry leaders understand the major challenges and opportunities for industry, technology, strategy and the economy in the future. Sign up for free at research.businessinsider.com.au.

Tagged In

features sai-us thelife