I came across another article exploring the topic of multitasking in the New York Times called Slow Down, Brave Multitasker, and DonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t Read This in Traffic. Millennial students consider themselves expert multitaskers with an innate ability to so several things at once. But research continues to show that the human brain cannot concentrate on two things at once.
A better way to think about multitasking is continuous partial attention. Last year Time Magazine did a cover story called Are Kids Too Wired For Their Own Good? Of particular interest was the impact of multitasking on learning.
Former Microsoft executive Linda Stone has coined the phrase “continuous partial attention”, which I think a better way to explain multitasking. Technology advances will bring more electronic devices with more capabilities into our lives and the idea of being always on, always connected will become a reality. Having the ability to concentrate on one thing at a time, along with the ability to turn our cellphones, PDA’s and computers off on occasion will be important skills in the future.