White Noise or Intentional Distractions


Sarah of Neek Talk posts about Apple selling 100 million iPods. It’s a good post. She concisely describes why these sales make sense to her.

I have an old guy’s question. Why does anyone want to have earplugs with sound? Besides serving as white noise, doesn’t the sound interfer with thinking clearly, with problem solving, with learning something from what’s going on immediately around the hearer?

If the answer is, “No,” then why don’t commercial aircraft and fighter pilots wear them while on duty? What am I missing?

Yes, I’m serious and saddened by what I see. People who plug into mobile sound seem to miss so much of what’s exciting about life by intentionally creating distractions for themselves. That’s good for me, because such distractions reduce the number of serious competitors for things I may want.

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Robert Heiny
Robert W. Heiny, Ph.D. is a retired professor, social scientist, and business partner with previous academic appointments as a public school classroom teacher, senior faculty, or senior research member, and administrator. Appointments included at University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Peabody College and the Kennedy Center now of Vanderbilt University; and Brandeis University. Dr. Heiny also served as Director of the Montana Center on Disabilities. His peer reviewed contributions to education include publication in [I]The Encyclopedia of Education [/I](1971), and in professional journals and conferences. He served s an expert reviewer of proposals to USOE, and on a team that wrote plans for 12 state-wide and multistate special education and preschools programs. He currently writes user guides for educators and learners as well as columns for [I]TuxReports[/I].com.