Is the Internet Warping Our Brains? Is the Internet Warping Our Brains?
The GOOD Life

Is the Internet Warping Our Brains?

by Cord Jefferson

July 20, 2011

 

This is your brain on Google.

New research from Columbia University psychologist Betsy Sparrow suggests that Google, your favorite search engine turned email host turned social network, might actually be making you less likely to absorb information. Sparrow's study, "Google Effects on Memory: Cognitive Consequences of Having Information at Our Fingertips," found that people who were confident they could use the internet to access some bit of information in the future were less likely to recall that information themselves. However, they were more likely to recall how to go about accessing the information if necessary. Sparrow calls it "outsourcing data," letting the internet take care of some stuff so we can save our brains for things that can't be Googled, like parents' birthdays and coworkers' names. 

+
Join the discussion
The
Daily
GOOD
Sign up to receive the best of GOOD delivered to your inbox each and every weekday
Iranian and Israeli athletes become friends on flight to Special Olympics. http://t.co/2TKFJ8HhiM http://t.co/eg8lNgDIM6
Is the Internet Warping Our Brains?