Multitasking might make you stupid, but that doesn't mean you have a choice

Sue Shellenbarger: Multitasking makes you stupid, studies say.

Sue Shellenbarger: People who multitask are less efficient than those who focus on one project at a time, says a study published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology. The time lost switching among tasks increases with the complexity of the tasks, according to the research by [David Meyer, psychology professor at the University of Michigan] and others. (Via Frank Patrick.)


Sure it does, but does that mean you really have a choice? The research is intriguing. What I’d like to see next is some advice about making good choices about what and when to multitask and when and how to go after flow. The research only seems to go after the first part of the problem, which is to establish how much and what kind of degradation you might expect. The interesting part of the problem is how to get better at including multitasking appropriately in your repetoire of work strategies. Cause I sure don’t expect to get back to a world where I have the unfettered freedom to always single thread.