In Google+, Twitter, Tumblr and Blogger, we have tools for creating content. In Instapaper, we have tools for saving content. But I’m wondering what, if any, tools we do have for managing our cognitive surplus?
Put another way, you have X hours of free time in a day, how do you choose what to do?
You could pick off articles from your Instapaper queue. But it doesn’t have to be limited to online activities. You also wanted to watch that new TV show, go for a walk, or learn to play the piano. What do you do?
Maybe I’m just overthinking things. if you have some free time, just do what you want at the moment. Rapid-fire sites like Twitter encourage us to drink from the firehose and live in the now. There’s a certain calming effect to this letting go. You can’t keep up with everything otherwise you’ll drown, and most things aren’t as important as you first think.
But in order to truly learn and absorb a subject, you have to spend time with it, which is the opposite of the rapid-fire approach. And as the lists of things we want to consume continually grows, we tend to forget the things we once wanted to learn. Just keeping up prevents us from truly mastering anything.
The new Delicious launched today. Various articles about the relaunch touch on the problem of information overload, and I was hopeful that the new Delicious would help manage our cognitive surplus. But browsing the site today, it still feels like a list-making site at heart. This isn’t a bad thing, but I’m not convinced its helping with information overload.
So, I’m curious, how do you manage your cognitive surplus?