If there were no forums, or other online posting opportunities, would you still be as avid photographer? (not sure about last sentence structure)? My answer is: Almost. Sometimes, something here will challenge me, to a higher standard, and I go out and try something. But for the most part, I just have that inward "need" to photograph. And yet not very many people ever see what I have done. I'm not sure I can explain, what is the essence of my compulsion. Part is the equipment. I have always loved machinery. I like to make it "go/work". That's it's purpose. I am driven to get the best, that it has to offer. The photograph, is that "best", from the camera (machine). It is the evidence that I have done my part, in the machine's performance. Part is the love of God's beautiful creation. Whether it be plant, animal or people. (And part of the beauty, is the ugly that is part of the decay, that in turn feeds the new beauty) The beauty is always changing, and will never be exactly the same as it is now. Photography gives us the medium to revisit, if we so desire. And even that is not quite the same as the original view/experience. To the original question: Photography was a integral part of my life, long before computers or the internet! So be sure to "look" as you photograph. Or, you will miss the real, for the image, which is never as good as the original!