Linda Stone in HBR List of Breakthrough ideas for 2007

Linda Stone is an interesting person with interesting ideas. She coined the term 'continuous partial attention'. This is not the same as multitasking. But it's "an adaptive behavior that presumably allows us to keep pace with the never-ending bandwidth technology offers." She also signals more and more people that protest against the tyranny of tantalizing choices. (Relates well with Barry Schwarz's, "Less is more"!) I just read she is listed nr. 7 on the HBR list of Breakthrough ideas 2007!
We have come from information scarcity (pull) and are now loaded with information (push). The next step seems to be how we can get away from all the impulses, information, devices that bug us and make us feel miserable. Although I don't feel miserable yet I am very happy with technology such as RSS and social tagging that help you get the (new) information you want, find and remember paths through information and leave out all the rest. Stone predicts that people will be or are "yearning for a calmer existence" that leads/led people to adopt tools "that reduce information overload and support discernment."

If you want to learn more about her ideas, you can read more here (summary) or listen to her story here (held at the Etech 2006).



  1. Yes she does have interesting thoughts Samuel, you thinking of going thatway with your own work?

  2. Thanks for asking, Andy. I'll write something about the direction I want to go. I see Stone as a thought leader. Her ideas keep me sharp and help me figure out what knowledge workers need to do their work.


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