Wednesday, November 3, 2010
The Internet's impact on our brain
In the book "What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains The Shallows", Nicholas Carr warns that the byproduct of the fast paced distracting nature of the Internet is a diminished ability to think deeply and store information long-term. He states "... the Web makes it harder for us to lock information into our biological memory, we're forced to rely more and more on the Net's capacious and easily searchable artificial memory, even if it makes us shallower thinkers." p. 194 It requires time and patience for the information we gather to go into long-term memory.
While Carr indicates the helpful nature of calculators for students doing math work, I have to question this a bit. Have you noticed how dependent cashiers are upon their machines to indicate proper change? I shutter to think how things would operate, or not, with a prolonged power outage. Knowing the multiplication tables and basic arithmetic is still valuable.
So what do we do? One step in order to reduce the distractive nature of the computer is to limit the number of times thoughout the day we check email. It might also be wise for us to restrict our overall time on the Net if we desire contemplation of thoughts/ideas and to strengthen our ability to commit things to long-term memory.
Your thoughts... ideas????