Infomania Workshop

Last week CEO Deva Hazarika went up to Redmond to participate in a two day workshop on the issue of infomania in the workplace – “the loss of concentration caused by constant electronic interuptions that plague many office workers.”  Representatives from more than twenty companies and institutions (including Intel, Microsoft, IBM, Google, Morgan Stanley amd industry analysts and university researchers) spent two days talking about the problems faced by information overload and various strategies to fight the issue.

Today, Todd Bishop of the Seattle Post-Intellgencer published a piece about the event – It’s time to fight back against ‘infomania’:

‘”This is not the way we were meant to work,” said Nathan Zeldes, a workshop organizer and Intel Corp. principal engineer. “We should fight back. We should do something about it.”

Researchers say it’s not just a psychological toll. A September 2005 study by Basex Inc. estimated that interruptions from e-mail, Web browsing, instant messaging and other electronic communications cost U.S. companies $588 billion a year. It estimated that interruptions constituted 28 percent of the average knowledge worker’s day.’

For those of us who suffer from this problem, it’s good to know that folks are trying to do something about it.  Read the article for more detail, including five quick tips for coping with e-mail and information overload.