One of the things that often comes up for students like me (and for people who work primarily with the internet) is the great distraction it poses to “real life” and “real work”. Suffice it to say, there are many arguments against this phrasing, but the fact remains that the internet can be as great a distraction as it can be an aid.
This video featuring Nicholas Carr (author of The Shallows: what the internet is doing to our brains) paints this picture: the internet and it’s various distractions take our attention away from things that we are trying to learn, replacing the textbook page you’ve just read with the latest in your Facebook feed. Because your short term memory is constantly being bombarded with this drivel, the actual stuff that you’re trying to learn never makes it to the long term store in your brain, and you never really “learn” it. The video goes into better detail, but that’s the gist of it.
I love reading “pop science” books, and this video is certainly interesting, so I’m going to put Carr’s book on my summer reading list.