Significant jump in deaths and injuries from distracted walking
Jane Brody has a column on distracted walking (e.g., walking while operating a smartphone) in the NY Times. From the article:
. . . “I see a lot of folks who were injured when they tripped on a curb, walked into a pothole or were hit by a car they didn’t see, though they rarely admit they were distracted by their phones,” said Dr.Claudette M. Lajam, an orthopedic surgeon at NYU Langone Medical Center and the Hospital for Joint Diseases. “Yet you know many were because when they’re in my office and should be interacting with me, all they’re doing is looking at their phones or answering a call.”
Her advice: “Look where you’re walking. Look in front of you, not down at your phone.” Peripheral vision can drop to 10 percent of normal when a person is texting or talking on a phone while walking.
Despite the widespread belief, especially among younger people, that multitasking is both possible and safe, Dr. Lajam echoed the warning issued by a number of experts that “you can’t really pay attention to more than one thing at a time.” That, the experts say, is how the human brain evolved, and to think otherwise is a recipe for disaster. . .
Well, sure, we can’t really pay attention to more than one thing at a time now. But what we’re seeing is natural section at work: eventually a mutation will occur that provides an improvement in multitasking capabilities. Natural selection will favor that mutation and we shall in time evolve into a species with amazing multitasking capabilities.