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Tech Tools Fostering "Mini Generation Gaps"

January 10th, 2010 01:27 admin Leave a comment Go to comments

Hugh Pickens writes “The NY Times has an interesting report on the iGeneration, born in the ’90s and this decade, comparing them to the Net Generation, born in the 1980s. The Net Generation spend two hours a day talking on the phone and still use e-mail frequently while the iGeneration — conceivably their younger siblings — spends considerably more time texting than talking on the phone, pays less attention to television than the older group, and tends to communicate more over instant-messenger networks. ‘People two, three or four years apart are having completely different experiences with technology,’ says Lee Rainie, director of the Pew Research Center’s Internet and American Life Project. ‘College students scratch their heads at what their high school siblings are doing, and they scratch their heads at their younger siblings. It has sped up generational differences.’ Dr. Larry Rosen, a professor of psychology at California State University, says that the iGeneration, unlike their older peers, expect an instant response from everyone they communicate with, and don’t have the patience for anything less. ‘They’ll want their teachers and professors to respond to them immediately, and they will expect instantaneous access to everyone, because after all, that is the experience they have growing up,’ says Rosen.” Read below for another intra-generational wrinkle.

Another intra-generational gap is the iGeneration comfort in multi-tasking. Studies show that 16- to 18-year-olds perform seven tasks, on average, in their free time — like texting on the phone, sending instant messages, and checking Facebook while sitting in front of the television; while people in their early 20s can handle only six, and those in their 30s about five and a half. “That versatility is great when they’re killing time, but will a younger generation be as focused at school and work as their forebears?” writes Brad Smith. “I worry that young people won’t be able to summon the capacity to focus and concentrate when they need to,” says Vicky Rideout, a vice president at the Kaiser Family Foundation.

Source: Tech Tools Fostering "Mini Generation Gaps"

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