As with most things, the benefits from computers and technology is all about balance.
From an article in The Independent – What the web is teaching our brains, a list of activities and the benefits each provides.
- Internet research: Boosts the ability to integrate and process information as well as enhancing decision-making skills.
- General browsing: Encourages the use of continuous partial attention and multi-tasking, which can impair cognition and cause irritability
- Playing computer games: May improve multi-tasking skills, memory and peripheral vision. Can lead to antisocial behaviour.
- Building a blog or website: Building a blog or your own website improves frontal lobe function, reasoning and memory.
- Sorting email: Boosts information-processing functions in the brain’s frontal lobe. Can also cause stress.
- Using emoticons: Exercises brain centres linked to emotion and social connection; particularly beneficial to those who use computers for long periods.
- Tweeting and chatrooms: Enhances peripheral attention, helps to boost self-esteem and protects the hippocampus.
The article includes more information on the “why” or how it works, and of course some negative aspects of internet & technology usage too.
2 thoughts on “How Using The Internet Is Changing Our Brains”
Thanks for the great blog post. I found it useful and it backs up a theory of mine about multitasking. As a librarian at a small college library with only a few staff members, a certain level of multitasking is often a necessary part of the job. But what is good multitasking and bad multitasking, or should I say, what should be avoided and when is multitasking needed or acceptable? I have just started a blog series you may be interested titled “The Small College Librarian” and multitasking is one area I plan to address. The URL to the first post is at http://thisthatotherthing.wordpress.com/2010/01/04/the-small-college-librarian-%E2%80%93-part-1-%E2%80%93-introduction/