By Natalie Zarowny
It's become an important part of our lives, so it's hard to believe that twenty years ago, texting didn't even exist.
It's no secret texting has completely changed the way we communicate with one another.
But what's the appeal of texting?
And why has it stuck?
"It's faster, you don't have to talk on the phone to someone," said Zeke Hartman, a sophomore at Augustana College.
"My grand kids, they like to text, so they text me and that's part of the reason why I had to learn," said Joyce Shelton, A 57-year-old from Moline.
"Text messaging keeps me in communication with my boys who are out of state," said Robert MacNeil, a 51-year-old from Moline.
Texting keeps us connected and defines our relationships.
But according to experts, most of all, it gets us through the day.
"There are a lot of folks who are very upset if you don't keep up with them on an hourly basis," said Professor David Snowball, a communications studies professor at Augustana College.
Professor Snowball said texting acts as an affirmation machine for people.
It's like constantly having someone telling you, "It's okay, I like you."
"They have taught us that whatever we do, we're never alone, and we can always count on someone else to tell us that we did the right thing," said Snowball.
He also said for many young people, it's changing the way we used to act in social situations.
"I was one of those girls who broke up with a person through texting, I was that person once, but I should have called," said Katelyn Lazar, a junior at Augustana College.
With all the changes texting has brought about, some folks say it's not all good.
"It's kind of getting rid of our closeness with one another, like that real closeness," said Bryce Johnson, a senior at Augustana College.
As for Professor Snowball, he's seen this before.
With every new technology come mixed reactions.
"And so this is bad. Or it's just different, which is the thing that's closer to true," said Professor Snowball.
Twenty years ago today, the first text message was sent by a British engineer that said, ‘Merry Christmas."