Sunday, January 23, 2011

Multitasking May Not Mean Higher Productivity

The answer is when it comes to media multitasking, the types of tasks we looked at, filtering, memory management and task switching, there is a literature suggesting there are no differences between men and women. However, there is a large literature on - for lack of better term, I call task multitasking or doing things in the real world, where we do seem to see women have advantages…

I'm glad I went back to read the transcript (see link above) or I might have dismissed the interview altogether.  Multitasking weakens cognitive ability?  Huh.  I guess I'm killing brain cells left and right.  All women multitask.  I rightly judged that the study was conducted by a man, for all women know that when you go to the bathroom, you change the toilet paper roll.  Does this "scientist" thinks it just jumps on the holder by itself?  Of course, not.
Not multitasking means the roll stays forever perched on top of the holder and the empty tube.  

Women have mastered multitasking out of necessity for eternity.  Managing children and the household simultaneously requires nothing less.  For example, I headed off to do barn chores tonight.  Before leaving, I put clothes to dry in the dryer, clothes to wash in the washer, the rice to cook for dinner in the rice cooker, and fed the dogs to eat while I was gone.  (Note:  my husband was in the house should anything decide to blow up.)  I don't think I ever watch TV or streaming on my computer without also doing dishes or folding or ironing clothes.   What woman takes a shower without noticing the red spot in the corner and cleaning it before turning off the water?  

Cognitive ability indeed.  Okay, I'll admit multitasking has its disadvantages, like when I forget about the green beans in the microwave and we have to eat them for dessert.  I'll admit that as an older baby boomer, I bristle at youngers texting at dinner or over coffee.  Media multitasking is, as this article points out, a different story.  

Well, my rice is done, so to preserve what IQ I have left, I will hit "publish" and finish making dinner.

Jefferson is feeling better every day!


Marie said...

I suspect that my attempts at multitasking do not result in greater accomplishments or better organization a lot of the time -- but I do agree that women have to multitask just to get through the day! And please tell Jefferson that he is very handsome and I hope he continues to feel better!

I'm a new follower, do come by and see my blog sometime, I would love to have you visit!

Cloudia said...

Yay women!

and sweet kitty :)

Aloha from Honolulu
Comfort Spiral

Fatcat said...

I do way too much multitasking if its a bad thing?

Older boomer? I don't think so. I think you and I are younger boomers.

pita-woman said...

Okay, I sooo laughed at the toilet paper issue. I have to admit, my husband is better than I about changing the roll. In fact, when he sees it getting low, he gets the next roll out and sets it on the edge of the tub, just so the next person (whether it's him or myself) won't run out in a crucial moment.


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