Saturday, January 7, 2017

...writing post title...quit check of email and facebook...back to post - 2016 Resolution Fulfillment

For the longest time I have held myself out as a master multitasker. Part of this was probably because being able to do more than one thing well at one time simply has to be superior to being only a unitasker. I share Alton Brown's loathing of unitaskers in the kitchen. [bonus points if you know the one unitasker he allows in the kitchen]

But I have had a volte–face: I now believe that multitasking is a bug rather than a feature. (I still share Alton's view regarding kitchen gear.)

My wandering mind is not the juggling Jedi I hold it out to be. Rather it is a bungling, distracted toddler that needs to concentrate for best results. As with all things of this nature it is a matter of degree along a spectrum rather than an absolute dichotomy. And to that end I have moved decisively from the position that multitasking is desirable (i.e., good performance at multiple tasks done in concert is possible) to the position that unitasking is desirable.

How well something can be done is directly proportional to how singularly it can be focused upon. Adding complexity is not an efficient way to use up slack resources (spare brain power, excess stress aptitude, extra time, etc.). It is simply a way to make the success in the original task less likely.

And of course there are TED Talks on the subject. The Instant Gratification Monkey will make you laugh as it indirectly touches on my position. This one really gets to the multitasking points about the 6 minute mark--so feel free to shop on Amazon while it plays in the background until that point.