In a follow-up to Gini Dietrich’s video post discussing Angelica Colantuoni’s idea of “unplugging,” I thought this article from the New York Times, “Digital Devices Deprive Brain of Needed Downtime”, related. It doesn’t exactly highlight the dangers of digital devices but describes how they are altering our thinking and lessening our ability to brainstorm and be creative.
Our brains need downtime; we need to digest information in order to think more strategically. Maybe this is why billionaire and new owner of the New Jersey Nets, Mikhail Prokhorov, is able to run such a successful business. He doesn’t own a cell phone and claims to rarely use a computer. “I don’t use a computer. We have too much information and it’s really impossible to filter it,” Mikhail tells 60 Minutes.
But I don’t know if I remember what real downtime feels like. While waiting for the subway I check my emails to kill time and to go to sleep at night I play on my iTouch, in fact, that’s how I found this article, reading the New York Times at 1 a.m. from my digital device in bed.
With the idea that there is really no such thing as multitasking, just having the ability to master the art of scanning, what are digital devices doing to improve our brains and how are these technologies helping the thought processes of new generations?