In the morning the alarm sounds and the ritual begins. People turn on their technology as they get ready for work. As rush hour begins, more of us are engaging in a digital symphony of sifting through content.
With the click of a mouse, individuals can obtain access to the information they want. This is the power of high-end computing. . However, scientists are warning us of the consequences of constant web surfing.
According a recent piece in The Washington Post, scientists conclude that human beings are developing digital brains. The digital mind focuses on skimming through information.
We need individuals asking probative questions and a providing context to thrive. Unfortunately, our culture is now dominated by nonstop cable TV news that gives sound bites and snapshots. Also, we are also spending an average of five hours per day online according to eMarketer.
The good news is the brain is adapting to the barrage of social media, e-mails and text messages. The bad news is that comprehension and reading are adversely affected by all of this. Our minds are developing short cuts to process all of this information.
There is nothing wrong with finding an efficient way to manage your information. Sometimes a quick scan regarding the “latest and greatest” on Facebook is the only sensible way. Television alone has reduced our collective attention spans. Some teachers are complaining that students are struggling through the classics. How can civilization survive when we cannot grasp Shakespeare’s verses and Austen’s sentences?
There is a difference between online and print reading. Based on some initial studies, researches conclude that comprehension seems better with paper. Specialists have expressed concerns regarding learning when the love for technology can hamper their retention. At this point, experts recommend more research regarding the differences between text and screen reading.
We cannot turn back the clock. We all love the convenience of technology and how it makes life easier. Yet, we have to take a break for the sake our of brain cells. Life demands constant adaptation and learning. This happens when our minds can deal with the details.