Nintendo has decided to, much to the collective 'meh' of everyone else, Shut down Wii and DS online support. The Wii U and 3/2DS is still going strong and by all accounts Wii online gaming was mostly smash brothers brawl so why care? Worst that's going to get affected is Pokemon right?
Well for me it's more a case of 'this is an object lesson in why depending on an online service is a really dumb idea' I can then sit and point at Joe or Jimmy Online without them thinking it's either tinfoil hat paranoia or an edge case scenario. After all the DS still has freaking pokemon, which has been a license to print money. Nintendo turning off the tap only a couple years after seems like a bit of a headscratch. Beyond that though I have the following to ask.
What about the online services you actually use?
All your runs in Call of Duty, or those photos you upload to Facebook. Server plug gets pulled good luck getting your data out. Anyone remember Tabblo? It was a photo service like Picasa or Photo bucket. I only heard of them through a talk Jason Scott made that got posted to YouTube. Ever heard of Kickststart or LuLu Poetry? How about AOL Hometown or Yahoo Video? All services that got shut down with little to no no clear warning they were going away. The worst offender I know of for that, however, is GeoCities. Their 'announcement' was buried in a helpfile. OK fine you might not care since most of what's posted online is either crap or not interesting. Thing of it is same applies to whatever you've posted to Facebook, uploaded to Google, soundcloud, or whatever. We might not care about anyone else's stories but by the same token just as few care about ours.
This is not me standing by the proverbial car wreck telling the poor shmuck involved they should've worn a seatbelt. I happen to be annoyed at Nintendo pulling the plug, but for me it's one experience along with a dozen others where a game or service or the internet itself goes out for a variety of reason. Because of that I'd figured out pretty fast the internet isn't always going to be there; especially if you're rural.
Well sadly there isn't anything to be done for Nintendo, but that doesn't mean you can't use this experience as a wake-up call about your online 'life' and what happens to all the photos, video, and that-have-you that gets posted. I am a big fan of making backups of those things you want preserved. However I'm also a fan of posting stuf online, which is pretty obvious given I keep a blog, post on Google+, and am a fan of being able to find everything online so I'm currently looking into ways to make a home server.
Servers are neat. You can use them not only to host web pages, but you can also automate downloading files, share music, video, or host game servers. The uses really pile up over the years and added complexity of the web. Even better is a netbook can do a lot when all it has to do is deal with you and a few other people and isn't having to double as the family machine. Remember the web in the very beginning used to run on machines we would consider ancient and had to provide for hundreds or thousands of users. Sure the web is more complex and that old 486 isn't going to cut it as a mail server anymore, but that old netbook you got that you can't really use anymore because it has a cramped keyboard, little space, and the processor don't let you do much and got an iDroidBerry device instead? That ting, with a few thumbdrives and a lightweight Linux will give you a new thing to play with and if you already have the hardware all it costs is time to tinker around.