Paolo Cardini is a designer, teacher, and self-proclaimed multitasker. He proudly teaches his students in ways to maximize efficiency by multitasking appropriately. However, he recently realized the limitations and pitfalls of multitasking when he began working on a design project called MonoTasking. He was tasked with producing iPhone covers that are meant to "downgrade" the iPhone's functions so as to only allow for the fundamental features to be available, like making a phone call. The design results are what you would expect them to be - a little funny looking and completely defeat the purpose of what makes the iPhone so popular. It reminds me of when New Yorkers put their dogs into little strollers to go for a walk (What's the point of taking your dog out for a walk if the dog is NOT walking!?!?!)
He's designed the iPhone covers not so much to sell a new product, but to make a statement about how we've gotten so used to the distractions with which we've surrounded ourselves. For example, just by doing a quick count of how many internet tabs I have open right now (14) I can feel how it's just a common part of my life now. This seemingly innocent habit seeps into our work and school lives as well, and as research has shown, multitasking can make you 50% more likely to make a mistake and take you four times as long to accomplish a task. Wow.Washington University neuroscientist, John Medina, writes in his book Brian Rules that "we are biologically incapable of processing attention-rich inputs simultaneously." He's specifically talking about the brain's ability to pay attention (not necessarily our ability to walk and talk at the same time). To illustrate this point, he references a few studies that show how texting while driving is actually more dangerous than drunk driving. It's hard to imagine something that can inhibit our attention while driving as much as alcohol can, but texting seems to have done the trick.