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A startup is considering hiring a teen hacker for a critical project that must be completed in one week.

The teen hacker confidently assures the company’s founder that he can complete the entire assignment in just two days.

Now, multiply all that by every social app we use (I’m down to eleven), add the toll of context-switching back and forth and back and forth between all of those apps, and you will no longer wonder why we constantly feel so distracted. All that annoying stuff of the pre-digital age—maps, the library, the post office, actual money, calculating tips, and hailing cabs—all that stuff was like a gym for our brains?

Carr says yes: All those tedious things added depth, detail, and deliberation to our days.

Will the best minds of my generation be destroyed, not by madness, but by an addiction to making and using distraction apps?

In a meta-analysis recently published in European Neuropsychopharmacology, researchers from the University of Oxford and Harvard Medical School concluded that a drug called modafinil, which is typically used to treat sleep disorders, is a cognitive enhancer.

Adderall, or amphetamine, works by boosting the brain’s levels of norepinephrine and dopamine, two chemicals that are responsible for Scientists are less sure how modafinil works.Mathematician Paul Erdős, who put in nineteen-hour days—doing math! We greet the or a self-portrait by Van Gogh roughly the same way: slowly, deliberately, and with full attention. Wait, if I like something, I should favorite it, but if I really like something or, in some cases, really hate something, I should retweet it?—credited amphetamines with helping him publish more math papers than anyone in history, by some counts (more than 1,500). It’s our thoughts and reactions that differ: Why’s she staring at me? Logging on to Snapchat or Twitter is like stepping into another land that’s right inside the palm of your hand. about all those supposed rules and supposed conventions.Essentially, it can help normal people think better.Out of all cognitive processes, modafinil was found to improve decision-making and planning the most in the 24 studies the authors reviewed.

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