Great piece by Christopher Mims of the Wall Street Journal, humbly exposing our shared human frailty in the face of ubiquitous technological connectivity.
Our students who never knew differently must have boundaries and oversight in what the author cleverly describes as the distraction-industrial complex, a nod to President Eisenhower's grave warning against what he described as the military-industrial complex emerging within America's post-WWII European presence at the onset of the Cold War.
We can exhort with authority built upon experience to both parents and students that the sustained mental effort required to be a student in a competitive environment can be compromised by undisciplined time management. Constant connectivity can lead to a distraction-laden existence as a MUS student.
From the article:
First, there's the matter of our frail psyches. The best research we have tells us that, given the opportunity, humans tend to interrupt ourselves on average every three minutes. We'll switch from a Web browser to a Word document, for example. These interruptions are fairly harmless as long as they are all related to the task at hand.
What's devastating to our productivity: interruptions we didn't invite, especially if they draw our attention to an unrelated task, such as an incoming email, instant message or other alert.
One study from Microsoft indicated that programmers who were interrupted by an incoming email lost 10 minutes every time they switched from their original task, on top of however long it took them to answer the email. Earlier studies suggest that workers lose as much as 40% of their productive time when they are regularly interrupted.