A distraction about a distraction | Blogads

A distraction about a distraction

by henrycopeland
Monday, March 26th, 2007

Lots of great stuff in this NYT article about online distractions. Some meat:

In a recent study, a group of Microsoft workers took, on average, 15 minutes to return to serious mental tasks, like writing reports or computer code, after responding to incoming e-mail or instant messages. They strayed off to reply to other messages or browse news, sports or entertainment Web sites.

⒜I was surprised by how easily people were distracted and how long it took them to get back to the task,⒝ said Eric Horvitz, a Microsoft research scientist and co-author, with Shamsi Iqbal of the University of Illinois, of a paper on the study that will be presented next month.

â’œIf itâ”s this bad at Microsoft,⒝ Mr. Horvitz added, â’œit has to be bad at other companies, too.⒝

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