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Too Much Information

Topics: Technology | 1 CommentBy admin | May 19, 2010

Why I’m kicking my techno-addiction and joining an Amish community.

Personal computers and the Internet have made so many amazing things possible. Like spending an hour trying to convert a PDF to another format. Or getting Word to stop changing the format of everything you type. Or watching an amazing HD video clip on Vimeo that freezes every ten seconds. Or enabling one Russian guy to send millions of people an e-mail that tells them how to increase their penis size, even if they don’t have one. I jest of course; I love the ways in which technology can enhance our lives. Which is precisely why I’m going to do away with a tremendous amount of it in the coming months. And then slowly reintroduce it as I see fit. I’ve talked before about the various ways technology is impacting our lives, and maybe even making us crazy. Well, I’ve been thinking about this for several years, and I’m not the only one who ponders the issue. Back in 2005, Dr. Edward Hallowell – a psychiatrist who specializes in ADD – identified a related disorder he calls “attention deficit trait”, which is essentially a sort of “acquired ADD”. In this interview, he points out something that I’m always saying, which is that “No one really multitasks. You just spend less time on any one thing.” I have this trait bad, and so do a lot of people I know. It doesn’t help that I’m something of an information addict, with occasional flareups of Wikiphilia. I often find my life to be an almost surreal meta-reference to itself . And in that vein find it hilarious that there are web sites like Zen Habits that are devoted to making life simpler. Why would you need a computer, an internet connection, and a web site if you were trying to simplify things? Likewise with the video clips below, which are chock full of meta irony. You’ve probably seen at least one of them, but what kills me in both instances is that they both take fascinating and perhaps useless information, and present it in a way that’s technologically sophisticated, but probably least suited to conveying the information. A list of facts would have been much more effective, but not nearly as fun and distracting! As they say on the intranets: “it makes teh head asplode”.

Information You Don’t Need, Presented In A Way That Doesn’t Help You:

Did You Know?

Did You Know 4.0

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  1. Posted by Best Of 2010 at dissociatedpress.com on 07.18.10 1:57 pm

    [...] a constant state of technological ennui. That’s why I’m always eager to point out how too much information is making us crazy, and how the personal computer will bring the end of the world, with a little [...]