Friday, April 17, 2009


There is so much information out there it's overwhelming. Well, maybe not if you're under 20, but sometimes I become inundated with input. It's something I almost seek - right now I'm watching a History Channel program, working on the bi-weekly Joiner Center newsletter, checking and answering emails, and researching a few things that especially caught my attention today. So how able am I to significantly absorb any of this information?

There's a lament I've seen, though I can't recall where, that we have become a society of skimmers. We look for fast, quick information that is easily digestible and assimilatable. We shirk from meaningful contemplation. This affects our communications, our intelligence, and according to some, our morality.

The thing is, I've never had a good memory. Really, even before the days of constant digital input (and output) I could barely remember the conversations I had earlier in the day. Does subjecting myself to virtually constant information make it more difficult for me to digest? Some people swear by multitasking - especially those with attention disorders - claiming that using more of the brain allows for better focus. Some, a dear friend of mine for example, advises slowing down. I'm caught in the middle. At times, like now for example, I find myself distracted by the multiple inputs, yet strangely unable to pull myself away from them. At others, and perhaps the origin of the habit for me, I can't seem to devote myself to one project entirely and so search for other stimulation.

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