Interesting stuff- the cognitive skills which are enhanced by web browsing are the opposite of the ones which are best for learning. I read this all the way through and only managed to be distracted by the rest of the web once. That’s almost a record.
- Category Archives Wired
The depth of our intelligence hinges on our ability to transfer information from working memory, the scratch pad of consciousness, to long-term memory, the mind’s filing system. When facts and experiences enter our long-term memory, we are able to weave them into the complex ideas that give richness to our thought. But the passage from working memory to long-term memory also forms a bottleneck in our brain. Whereas long-term memory has an almost unlimited capacity, working memory can hold only a relatively small amount of information at a time. And that short-term storage is fragile: A break in our attention can sweep its contents from our mind.
Wired has a list of ten geeky ways to help you get up in the morning. I’m out of bed between 8 and 8.30 every weekday. I guess I could try to rise a bit earlier.
I’ve spent over twelve of the last twenty four hours trawling through the archives of webcomic Questionable Content, working my way from the very first episode right up to date. Such total immersion is probably akin to brainwashing, so I love the strip.
QC is about indie kid Marten, his anthropomorphic PC Pintsize and flatmate Faye and their complicated and ever evolving relationships with each other and a growing cast. (I don’t want to tell you the current status of those relationships, because I don’t want to spoil it for you if you start from the beginning. Though even if you go into it knowing some of the details, as I did, finding out how everyone got there is still fun.) It blends romantic drama and comedy with geeky humour and philosophical silliness and has had some excellent slow burning storylines. For example, some key revelations that were seeded very early on weren’t fully explained until the strips were into the 500s and are still affecting things now it’s in the 1200s. Whilst the writing has always been sharp, the art started out quite simple but has improved steadily until it’s now gorgeous and reminds me a lot of Philip Bond‘s Wired World from Deadline.
I found Questionable Content through an article on Wired 10 Great Webcomics You Should Not Share With Your Kids. Of their list I already read xkcd and Sinfest regularly and I’ve never really taken to Penny Arcade, so I opened the others and gave them their 5 most recent strips to impress me. 20 or so back through the QC archives I figured I was doing it all wrong and skipped all the way back to number 1 to start working forwards. I may not have got much else done since then, but I’m happy about it.