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The Fight for Our Eyeballs - Los Angeles Review of Books
"Stand Out of Our Light Freedom and Resistance in the Attention Economy By James Williams Published 05.31.2018 Cambridge University Press 144 Pages"
book  review  technology-critique  social-media  attention  business  advertising 
september 2018 by tsuomela
A New Theory of Distraction - The New Yorker
Review of The World Beyond Your Head: Becoming an Individual in an Age of Distraction by Matthew Crawford.
book  review  distraction  attention  philosophy  self 
june 2015 by tsuomela
The Hazards of Going on Autopilot - The New Yorker
"We assume that more automation is better—that a driverless car or a drone-delivered package is progress, no matter the guise it takes—but the experience we’ve had in aviation teaches us to be suspicious of that assumption. “Don’t just automate something because you can,” Casner said. “Automate it because you should.”"
automation  psychology  awareness  hci  attention  risk  accidents  flying 
september 2014 by tsuomela
Guerrilla Marketing?: An Interview with Michael Serazio (Part One)
"Michael Serazio is an assistant professor in the Department of Communication whose research, writing, and teaching interests include popular culture, advertising, politics, and new media.  His first book, Your Ad Here: The Cool Sell of Guerrilla Marketing (NYU Press, 2013), investigates the integration of brands into pop culture content, social patterns, and digital platforms amidst a major transformation of the advertising and media industries."
interview  people  marketing  guerrilla  social-media  attention  advertising 
september 2013 by tsuomela
BBC Column: Psychological self-defence for the age of email « Mind Hacks
"Here’s a pretty safe assumption to make: you probably feel like you’re inundated with email, don’t you? It’s a constant trickle that threatens to become a flood. Building up, it is always nagging you to check it. You put up spam filters and create sorting systems, but it’s never quite enough. And that’s because the big problems with email are not just technical – they’re psychological. If we can understand these we’ll all be a bit better prepared to manage email, rather than let it manage us."
email  attention  information-overload  psychology  bias  cognition  gtd  productivity 
october 2012 by tsuomela
The Generalized Hawthorne Effect
"So we can formulate a generalized version of the Hawthorne Effect: the effectiveness of a tool depends almost entirely on the amount of mindful attention being devoted in its use, not the specific form the attention takes. "
psychology  technology  habit  attention  utility  tools  deliberate  practice 
july 2012 by tsuomela
Limited Attention as the Scarce Resource in an Information-Rich Economy by Josef Falkinger :: SSRN
"This paper uses basic empirical facts from attention and perception psychology for a behavioral approach to equilibrium analysis at the industry and the macroeconomic level. The paper endogenously determines whether an economy is information-rich and whether scarcity of attention complements economic scarcity. A conventional economic equilibrium results if subjects have free attention capacity. At the positive level, the impacts of IT-progress, international integration and media on equilibrium diversity and level of attention-seeking activities are shown. At the normative level, welfare, efficiency and optimal policy interventions are characterized. Finally, behavioral effects of intensified attention-seeking on market power, sectoral economic structure and work-leisure choice are considered."
attention  economics  technology  information 
may 2012 by tsuomela
The “Myth” of Media Multitasking: Reciprocal Dynamics of Media Multitasking, Personal Needs, and Gratifications - Wang - 2012 - Journal of Communication - Wiley Online Library
"The increasing popularity of media multitasking is frequently reported in national surveys while laboratory research consistently confirms that multitasking impairs task performance. This study explores this apparent contradiction. Using dynamic panel analysis of time series data collected from college students across 4 weeks, this study examines dynamic reciprocal impacts of media multitasking, needs (emotional, cognitive, social, and habitual), and corresponding gratifications. Consistent with the laboratory research, cognitive needs are not satisfied by media multitasking even though they drive media multitasking in the first place. Instead, emotional gratifications are obtained despite not being actively sought. This helps explain why people increasingly multitask at the cost of cognitive needs. Importantly, this study provides evidence of the dynamic persistence of media multitasking behavior."
technology  technology-effects  information-overload  multitasking  attention  emotion  communication 
may 2012 by tsuomela
Multitasking, always-on, and the pleasures of things that feel like work - Contemplative Computing
"This is easy to parody: one friend summarized the argument as, You're not the tech industry's bitch, you just don't know when to stop being awesome, which maybe is taking things a bit far. (Though one commenter's point that this might not be, but "'fear' of being dispensable" is also a good one.)

But I think there are a couple valuable things embedded in Perlow's study that I think are worth drawing out.

First, it seems to me that people aren't addicted to success, but to the feeling of success. There is an important difference."
technology  technology-effects  information-overload  multitasking  attention  emotion 
may 2012 by tsuomela
Is "grabbing" someone's attention like grabbing their privates? - Contemplative Computing
"If as William James said, "My experience is what I agree to attend to," then attention is rather more important than we usually think: what we pay attention to defines who we are. This makes attention a rather intimate thing. And efforts to capture your attention effectively say: You don't deserve to control your own attention. You shouldn't have sovereignty over the contents of your consciousness any longer. We should (subject to our decision to parse or resell that attention to other companies).

Thanks, but no thanks."
attention  computers  marketing  technology  business 
april 2012 by tsuomela
Information Diet | Home
"Healthy information consumption habits are about more than productivity and efficiency. They're about your personal health, and the health of society. Just as junk food can lead to obesity, junk information can lead to new forms of ignorance. The Information Diet provides a framework for consuming information in a healthy way, by showing you what to look for, what to avoid, and how to be selective. In the process, author Clay Johnson explains the role information has played throughout history, and why following his prescribed diet is essential in today's information age."
book  website  information  technology  diet  information-overload  attention 
april 2012 by tsuomela
Peak Attention and the Colonization of Subcultures
"The question of how such coded language emerges, spreads and evolves is a big one. I am interested in a very specific question: how do members of an emerging subculture recognize each other in public, especially on the Internet, using more specialized coded language?

The question is interesting because the Web is making traditional subcultures — historically illegible to governance mechanisms, and therefore hotbeds of subversion — increasingly visible and open to cheap, large-scale economic and political exploitation. This exploitation takes the form of attention mining, and is the end-game on the path to what I called Peak Attention a while back.

Does this mean the subversive potential of the Internet is an illusion, and that it will ultimately be domesticated? Possibly." Annotated link
internet  culture  subculture  code  code-words  attention  data-mining  social  social-networking  social-media  communication  signals  society  power  government  facebook 
april 2012 by tsuomela
The Law of Online Sharing - Technology Review
Facebook's impending problem is that even if the company enables future pacemakers to share our every heartbeat, the company cannot automate caring—the most important part of the feedback loop that has driven the social Web's ascent. Nothing can support exponential growth for long. No matter how cleverly our friends' social output is summarized and highlighted for us, there are only so many hours in the day for us to express that we care. Today, the law of social sharing is a useful way to think about the rise of social computing, but eventually, reality will make it obsolete.
social-media  facebook  sharing  online  community  attention  behavior  psychology  technology-effects 
january 2012 by tsuomela
Learning Through Digital Media » Productivity in the Age of Social Media: Freedom and Anti-Social
"Only through extensive use have I realized that Freedom [program that turns off internet access] is about pushing back at the device itself, a device that has failed the work market in a drive toward progress. To come to terms with this uncomfortable lack of sync between our devices and work patterns, first, we must understand that we, humans, are not the problem. Second, we must reconsider our relationships to our devices and, with open minds, examine where our devices have failed us. Third and finally, we must change the ideology of the productivity industry, moving away from bigger, better and faster and towards smaller, better, and slower."
attention  technology-effects  devices  design  psychology  productivity 
august 2011 by tsuomela
A Day Without Distraction: Lessons Learned from 12 Hrs of Forced Focus :: Tips :: The 99 Percent
"Here are the rules: All work must be done in blocks of at least 30 minutes. If I start editing a paper, for example, I have to spend at least 30 minutes editing. If I need to complete a small task, like handing in a form, I have to spend at least 30 minutes doing small tasks. Crucially, checking email and looking up information online count as small tasks. If I need to check my inbox or grab a quick stat from the web, I have to spend at least 30 minutes dedicated to similarly small diversions."
work  productivity  time-management  attention  focus  distraction 
july 2011 by tsuomela
PLoS ONE: Microstructure Abnormalities in Adolescents with Internet Addiction Disorder
Recent studies suggest that internet addiction disorder (IAD) is associated with structural abnormalities in brain gray matter. However, few studies have investigated the effects of internet addiction on the microstructural integrity of major neuronal fiber pathways, and almost no studies have assessed the microstructural changes with the duration of internet addiction.
internet  effects  technology-effects  attention  brain-imaging  brain  technology  addiction 
june 2011 by tsuomela
High Wired: Does Addictive Internet Use Restructure the Brain?: Scientific American
Kids spend an increasing fraction of their formative years online, and it is a habit they dutifully carry into adulthood. Under the right circumstances, however, a love affair with the Internet may spiral out of control and even become an addiction.

Whereas descriptions of online addiction are controversial at best among researchers, a new study cuts through much of the debate and hints that excessive time online can physically rewire a brain.
internet  effects  technology-effects  technology-critique  attention  brain  technology  online 
june 2011 by tsuomela
News: 'Now You See It' - Inside Higher Ed
Cathy N. Davidson, author of the forthcoming book Now You See It: How the Brain Science of Attention Will Transform the Way We Live, Work, and Learn (Viking) could safely be deemed a Never-Better, with perhaps a dash of the Ever-Waser. The major technological changes of the past decade and a half present an array of "exciting opportunities," Davidson argues -- opportunities to promote efficiency, satisfaction and success at every stage from kindergarten through career. If we are inclined to side with the Better-Nevers, worrying that our brains never evolved for shifts of such magnitude -- if kids attend to text messages and video games with alacrity, but fall behind in school, while adults feel swamped by information overload and spread too thin by multitasking -- the trouble, in Davidson's view, is not with all our new technologies, but rather with our failure thus far to adapt and restructure ourselves and our institutions.
book  interview  internet  effects  technology-effects  technology-critique  attention  brain  technology 
june 2011 by tsuomela
UnderstandingSociety: Quiet politics
"Pepper Culpepper's Quiet Politics and Business Power: Corporate Control in Europe and Japan sheds some very interesting light on one key question in contemporary western democracies: how do corporations and business organizations so often succeed in creating a legislative and regulatory environment that largely serves their interests? And, for that matter, why do they sometimes fail spectacularly in doing so, even while spending oceans of money in the effort to influence public policy? "
book  summary  political-science  comparative  business  power  corporation  salience  public  attention 
april 2011 by tsuomela
Rough Type: Nicholas Carr's Blog: Situational overload and ambient overload
"Situational overload is not the problem. When we complain about information overload, what we're usually complaining about is ambient overload. This is an altogether different beast. Ambient overload doesn't involve needles in haystacks. It involves haystack-sized piles of needles. We experience ambient overload when we're surrounded by so much information that is of immediate interest to us that we feel overwhelmed by the neverending pressure of trying to keep up with it all. "
information  information-overload  attention  situation  ambient  filters 
april 2011 by tsuomela
The Duality of Media: A Structurational Theory of Public Attention - Webster - 2011 - Communication Theory - Wiley Online Library
"Digital media offer countless options that compete for a limited supply of public attention. The patterns of use that emerge in this environment have important social implications, yet the factors that shape attendance are not well integrated into a single theoretical model. This article posits such a theory using Giddens's notion of structuration as an overarching framework. It identifies public measures that distill and report user information as a pivotal mechanism that coordinates and directs the behaviors of both media providers and media users, thus promoting the duality of media. The theory is then used to understand evolving patterns of public attention in the digital media environment."
media  theory  GiddensAnthony  sociology  attention  public  communication 
february 2011 by tsuomela
“Distraction,” Simplicity, and Running Toward Shitstorms | 43 Folders
Run straight into your shitstorm, my friends. Reject the impulse to think about work, rather than finishing it. And, open your heart to the remote possibility that any mythology of personal failure that involves messiahs periodically arriving to make everything “easy” for you might not really be helping your work or your mental health or your long-standing addiction to using tools solely to ship new excuses.
gtd  productivity  expertise  excellence  achievement  distraction  attention  success  advice 
february 2011 by tsuomela
Bill Gates Listens to the Wrong People - Bridging Differences - Education Week
Since Gates is a multibillionaire, he can't possibly understand what it means to work in an environment where you might be fired for disagreeing with your boss. Nor can he possibly understand that schools are collaborative cultures that need senior teachers who are ready and willing to help newcomers. He can't imagine that school is different from Microsoft or other big corporations. Let's be honest. CCSSO and The New York Times pay attention to what Gates says because he is so rich. If he didn't run the biggest foundation in the world, if he wasn't one of the richest men in the world, would anyone care about his opinion of education? Really, who would care what he said if he were the chairman of the Whatzit Corporation and sold widgets?
education  reform  power  wealth  media  attention  pedagogy 
december 2010 by tsuomela
Attention and Information – The Aporetic
So what appears to us as “too much information” could just be the freedom from necessity. I don’t have to worry about find ing and cut ting and storing fire wood: I don’t even have to man age a coal furnace.  That attention has been freed up for other things. What we see as “too much informa­tion” is probably some thing more like “a surplus of free attention.”

As a historian, I no longer have to spend hours scanning texts to find the smaller sets of information  I need. They pop up quickly when I deal with digitized texts, and the search process is stream lined and auto mated much in the way a gas burner stream lines and auto mates a wood stove.
attention  information-overload  history  academic  standards  practice  archive  digital  access 
november 2010 by tsuomela
In Defense of Links, Part One: Nick Carr, hypertext and delinkification — Scott Rosenberg's Wordyard
Carr is saying that Web links slow down our brains. But none of the studies the meta-analysis compiles looked at Web-style links. They all drew comparisons between linear hypertexts (screens with “next” links, not printed articles) on one side, and on the other, literary-style hypertexts broken up into multiple nodes where “participants had many choices in sequencing their reading.”
Every other study that I’ve looked into in this area shares these same problems; I’ll spare you the detail. These studies may help explain why there’s never been a literary-hypertext bestseller, but they don’t do much to illuminate reading on the Web.
web  hypertext  online  behavior  attention  reading  links  phenomenology  experience 
september 2010 by tsuomela
The Invisible Gorilla: And Other Ways Our Intuitions Deceive Us
Chabris and Simons website with videos of the "invisible gorilla" attention demonstration and other experiments in perception.
psychology  perception  illusion  attention  expectation  visual 
july 2010 by tsuomela
The art of slow reading | Books | The Guardian
"If you want the deep experience of a book, if you want to internalise it, to mix an author's ideas with your own and make it a more personal experience, you have to read it slowly," says Ottawa-based John Miedema, author of Slow Reading
reading  speed  technology  technology-effects  books  internet  education  literature  attention  psychology 
july 2010 by tsuomela
The Top Idea in Your Mind
"Turning the other cheek turns out to have selfish advantages. Someone who does you an injury hurts you twice: first by the injury itself, and second by taking up your time afterward thinking about it. If you learn to ignore injuries you can at least avoid the second half. I've found I can to some extent avoid thinking about nasty things people have done to me by telling myself: this doesn't deserve space in my head. I'm always delighted to find I've forgotten the details of disputes, because that means I hadn't been thinking about them. My wife thinks I'm more forgiving than she is, but my motives are purely selfish.
psychology  attention  forgiveness  forgetting  thinking 
july 2010 by tsuomela
zigzigger: On the History of Media and the "Attention Span"
If you have an interest in cultural media history, if you like Sesame Street and music videos, or if you have found the recent discussions about whether the internet makes you stupid or smart to be worth your scarce attention, you might be interested in my newly published work: “New Media, Young Audiences, and Discourses of Attention: From Sesame Street to ‘Snack Culture’” Media Culture & Society 32.4 (July 2010), 582-596. In this essay I trace the history of the “attention span” as it pertains to media from the early days of Sesame Street to the present, charting the process whereby media crafted to suit short attention spans of the young came to be blamed for shrinking the collective attention span of whole generations and societies.
media  history  attention  research  moral-panic  popular  culture 
july 2010 by tsuomela
danah boyd | apophenia » “for the lolz”: 4chan is hacking the attention economy
I would argue that 4chan is ground zero of a new generation of hackers – those who are bent on hacking the attention economy. While the security hackers were attacking the security economy at the center of power and authority in the pre-web days, these attention hackers are highlighting how manipulatable information flows are.
culture  internet  attention  hackers  hacking 
july 2010 by tsuomela
Study Hacks » Blog Archive » An Argument for Quitting Facebook
I argue the you should reverse this logic: before adopting a technology that can make a regular claim on your attention, insist that its benefits unambiguously outweigh its negatives.
facebook  attention  productivity  distraction  study 
april 2010 by tsuomela
Dopaminergic Aesthetics : The Frontal Cortex
The purpose of pleasure, then, is to make it easier for the pleasurable sensation - the delicious taste, the elegant idea, the desired object - to enter the crowded theater of consciousness, so that we'll go out and get it. That's why we've got a highway of nerves connecting the parts of the dopamine reward pathway - the nucleus accumbens, ventral striatum, etc - to the prefrontal cortex. (This also means that a well-turned phrase or pretty painting will be more likely to get stuck in working memory, since it's more rewarding. Aesthetics are really about attention.)
neurology  brain  science  drugs  pleasure  goals  happiness  hedonism  psychology  philosophy  aesthetics  neuroscience  dopamine  hormones  attention 
november 2009 by tsuomela
NaNoWriMo: A Pep Talk and a Warning | 43 Folders
Some book recommendations about writing- Goldberg, King, Hart, Lamott, etc.
writing  creativity  attention  determination  attitude  book  recommendations 
november 2009 by tsuomela
Ming the Mechanic: Convergent or Divergent
If you maintain the illusion that you're going to get something done, you should know that most of what goes on on the Internet is divergent. There are zillions of ways of being distracted. Lots of tidbits of information are drifting by, lots of people are rotating in your periphery. A lot of this is interesting and gives you new ideas about what else you could do, or what you could study, or what you could talk about, or how you could be entertained...

Divergence isn't bad. It is great for many things. The only problem is if you only have divergence tools, and nothing e
cognition  distraction  attention  convegence  divergence  internet  culture  tool 
october 2009 by tsuomela
The Way We Live Now - Going Offline in Search of Freedom -
In my slightly less agonizing situation, the trap is more of a bait and switch: the promise is of infinite knowledge, but what’s delivered is infinite information, and the two are hardly the same. In that sense, Homer may have been the original neuropsychologist: centuries after his death, brain studies show that true learning is largely an unconscious process. If we’re inundated with data, our brains’ synthesizing functions are overwhelmed by the effort to keep up. And the original purpose — deeper knowledge of a subject — is lost, as surely as the corpses surrounding Sirenum scopuli.

It could be that sometimes our greatest freedom may be to choose freedom from freedom.
internet  culture  psychology  limits  creativity  attention  information-overload 
october 2009 by tsuomela
Questioning the Attention Economy « The Scholarly Kitchen
More pushback on free media and free journalism - cites recent comments by Rupert Murdoch and Mark Cuban that newspapers cannot survive and continue to give away their content for nothing. "Newspapers face challenges beyond their business model, the biggest being the homogenization of content, where any one source can substitute for another. Murdoch’s toughest obstacle may be producing quality material that is unique enough that it can’t be easily replaced by a free alternative that is “good enough.” But if he can pull that off, there’s an argument to be made that a smaller market penetration consisting of paying customers is preferable to a wider penetration of freeloaders."
free  attention  economics  media  cost  journalism  business-model 
august 2009 by tsuomela
apophenia: Twitter: "pointless babble" or peripheral awareness + social grooming?
Defends Twitter even with "pointless babble" - Phatic expressions do social work rather than conveying information... think "Hi" or "Thank you".
twitter  social-media  online  behavior  culture  communication  technology-effects  social  awareness  attention  periphery 
august 2009 by tsuomela
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