Interruption Management
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Interruption Management

Sunday, February 11, 2018

Pervasive Interruptions - Interruption Management

Have you noticed? It seems as if we've reached the point where a typical person in our society now has Attention Deficit Disorder, culturally induced. The rising decibel level in public spaces, as documented over the last 25 years, all but confirms that our society has embraced a perpetually higher level of noise. Added to that, the number of messages that each of us is bombarded with on a daily basis has no end.

From billboards, to bus panels, to ads over urinals, at all times, and in all places, someone is vying for our attention. E-mail and the Internet have exacerbated the problem, but even those who are not online and not wired are subject to cultural Attention Deficit Disorder. Why? Because the general level of message bombardment in our society is exceedingly high.

Retrieve a person from a primitive society, someone who has never been exposed to television or telephones, or, if you could, retrieve someone from 1918, and today’s information bombardment would have immediate impact: I would be surprised if such visitors to our culture did not have near-instant nervous breakdown.

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Sunday, February 04, 2018

Bogus Deception for the Masses - Interruption Management

For at least the last several years, several a month, I've received various "help me move my fortune from my third-world country" email letters. How can the same transparent tactics be employed upmteen times unless there are legions of recipients who actually respond to such letters?

How difficult can it be for email account users in 2018 to figure out that these bogus claims are perpetrated by career criminals whose thievery is largely untraceable?

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Monday, January 29, 2018

Our Evolution, Interrupted - Interruption Management

Here are excerpts from James Gardner's review of: The Singularity is Near: When Humans Transcend Biology, by Ray Kurzweil, published by the Viking Press:

             1) On the fusion of human and machine intelligence: In the post-Singularity era, techno-futurist Ray Kurzweil predicts, there will be no distinction between human beings and their technologies. As we merge with our machines, we will become something more than merely human.

             2) The Borg-like hybrid entity that is our evolutionary destiny will, in Kurzweil's words, "match and then vastly exceed the refinement and suppleness of what we regard as the best of human traits." From the "perspective of un-enhanced biological humanity" this future state of affairs "will appear to rupture the fabric of human history."

            3) The only thing that will remain unequivocally human in such a world will be what Kurzweil regards as the defining trait of our humanity: the instinct to "extend [humankind's] physical and mental reach beyond current limitations."


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Saturday, January 20, 2018

Distractions and Decision-making - Interruption Management

Valerie Iancovich, writing for the Discovery Channel in Canada says “It's not shocking news that a bikini-clad woman will affect many men's judgment. But now, a recent study suggests that a man with high testosterone levels is more easily-influenced by a scantly-clad lady than guys with lower levels of the hormone.”

“Once the men with high testosterone were exposed to the photos of the women, they were more willing to settle for a poorer deal. As a matter of fact, just touching a bra prior to playing the game seemed to squander the resolve of the testosterone-heavy men.”

So, macho guys, be careful what type of information (photos, graphics) you’re exposed to. It might contort your decision-making capacity.

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Wednesday, January 10, 2018

The More Tasks, the More Distractions - Interruption Management

"Technology reduces the amount of time it takes to do any one task but also leads to the expansion of tasks that people are expected to do." – Juliet Schor

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Wednesday, January 03, 2018

2018: Derive the Best from Yourself - Interruption Management

Author, songwriter, and comedian Steve Allen was among the most prolific talent in broadcasting history. He wrote more than 9,000 songs, including "This Could Be the Start of Something Big," which is still often played at New Year's Eve galas. Not bad for someone who played by ear. He wrote TV scripts, gags, jokes. He also managed to write 50 books: first mysteries; then on show business; then self-help topics like presenting, speaking, and humor; and then later on social issues before passing away early this century.

Like many others in TV, Allen's career began in radio where, as a young DJ, he once announced a Harvard vs. William & Mary football score as "Harvard 14, William 10, Mary 7." His interests extended beyond show business as well. A tireless advocate, Allen was instrumental in the airlines' smoking ban.

I met Steve Allen in the 1990s at the American Bookseller's Convention in Los Angeles. It was rumored that he never traveled without a pocket tape recorder and when I asked him if this was true, he took out his pocket tape recorder and showed me. Allen once explained that although he was thought of as extraordinarily productive, he figured he owed his high output to "Not letting good ideas get away."

He recalled that even back in the 1950s, when tape recorders were bulky and expensive, he had one in each room of his house, even the bathroom.

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Friday, December 29, 2017

Self-Induced Distractions - Interruption Management

Years ago Johns Hopkins University researchers concluded that using a cellphone -- even with a hands-free device -- will distract drivers because the brain cannot easily handle both tasks. The brain directs its resources to either visual input or auditory input, but cannot fully activate both at the same time. Despite these findings, in 2012 MORE people are multi-tasking WHILE they drive.

"Our research helps explain why talking on a cell phone can impair driving performance, even when the driver is using a hands-free device," said research leader Steven Yantis, Ph.D.

"Directing attention to listening effectively 'turns down the volume' on input to the visual parts of the brain," he noted. "When attention is deployed to one modality -- say, in this case, talking on a cell phone -- it necessarily extracts a cost on another modality -- in this case, the visual task of driving.”
How, exactly, can MORE people today be multi-tasking WHILE they drive? This is madness, pure and simple. Do you want to be on the road when such people are driving by? Do you want your children to be?

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Jeff Davidson - Expert at Managing Interruption Overload

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Jeff Davidson: Bio

Managing Interruption Overload

Is the constant crushing burden of information and communication overload dragging you down, pulling you off course, and impeding your effectiveness? By the end of your workday, do you feel overworked, overwhelmed, stressed, and exhausted? Would you like to be more focused, productive, and competitive, while remaining balanced and in control?

If you're continually facing too many interruptions and too many demands, you need Breathing Space.

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