As I sit here reading this article my phone, on the table a few inches away, is beeping, making various "alert" sounds I have programmed, and some I haven't programmed, vibrating, and sometimes ALL of these at the same time. If the phone rings now it just might have to answer itself out of fear.
All of this is to tell me I have two moves with WWF, two program updates, a Twitter mention, three new emails on two different services, and there is a flood on the way to my area. Just guesses, but that's usually it. I didn't look at it, but I did get distracted, and annoyed. And last week I shut off AMBER alerts (sorry, too much noise and smoke), and a few others. But some I need, and others I can't seem to silence.
One of the things we like about our smartphones is that the are easier to use than our PCs – no lengthy booting up, Apps are easier than programs, fits in the palm of my hand, has great functions, it makes CALLS, etc.
But distracting it is. As are any information or communication systems which don't sit silently. The old house telephone, when it rings, is the king of distraction. Especially when they had the old, loud BELLS and not the calmer, quieter tones.
>> This raises a significant question: Can notifications received by a phone in one's car produce distraction comparable to active phone use in the vehicle?
The answer is going to be "yes" with some caveats.
Distracted workers make for less productivity and maybe less creativity. Distracted drivers = death.