Intriguing perspective on the how the Internet is a denial of service attack on your brain.
"We found that mental performance, the capability of the brain, was also reduced. Workers cannot think as well when they are worrying about e-mail or voice mails. It effectively reduces their IQ," says Wilson.
What's interesting is our neurons love new information. New information commands our attention. And our dopamine system is what tells us what is salient, that is, what we should pay attention to. Not so coincidentally the dopamine system is involved with all types of addiction. Cocaine, for example, overwhelms the system with its potency, installing itself as the most important thing to pay attention to in a person's life.
Email and the internet are a source for flows of new information and our brains are the sink taking it all in. The problem is email is an infinite supply of low grade information. Email is mostly junk. Email contributes next to nothing to our survival. Yet our brain wants to pay attention to it anyway because it is new.
The Internet is in effect a denial of service attack on our brains. [We are] constantly hit with new useless information we literally can't pay attention to other parts of our life. The internet may not have the same kick as cocaine, but the internet makes up for its lack of single dose potency by having an infinite, constant, and varied supply.
What do we do?