I gave a talk on Wednesday at UFI in Sheffield entitled “Email: the technology and psychology of continuous partial attention”, which was a brief little intro to some of my thoughts about the psychology of email use (the phrase ‘continuous partial attention’ I owe to Linda Stone, whose thoughts on the matter are far more considered than mine). Here is the abstract from my talk:
What did you interrupt to read this? Chances are you were in the middle of something, or maybe several things, which you put on hold to find out what I’m going to talk about. I’m a research psychologist with an interest in technology, learning and communication. In my talk I’ll tell you why email has such a compulsive hold on people’s attention, how to spot true email addiction, why technology which helps you know less actually makes you smarter, and how there’s both good and bad in the multitasking habit. Now – what were you doing again?