Is technology making you dumb and dumber-er?


VoicetagThat’s what a recent study would like you to believe: you’re getting dumb by using mobile technology. Some of the study results appear to support the claim with results like:

  • 25% of Britons don’t remember their landline number
  • Only 33% can recall three immediate family member birthdays
  • 55% of men surveyed remembered their wedding anniversary while 90% of the women did. My hunch is this last result has long been an issue well before the emergence of mobile technology. ;)

There’s definitely something to be said for the study, but I don’t believe that "tech is making you dumb". Instead, we’re finding ways to leverage technology and free our minds [sorry to borrow a line, Morpheus] so that we can focus our brains on more complex issues. If I was getting paid to remember my phone number and recall that number a dozen times a day, I’d likely remember it. Fact is: I don’t give my phone number out all that much, so do I really need to spin brain cycles on it? No, I’d rather put it in speed dial so I can exercise my brain in more challenging ways. I think the study shows something valid, but not the fact that we’re getting dumb as a society because of technology. What do you think?


Mark H

The PDA is a bit of a life saver for reminding you of anniversaries and birthdays, though I haven’t admitted this fact to my girlfriend.

Neil Anderson

“25% of Britons don’t remember their landline number”

Kind of an unfair question. After all, how often do I phone myself? :)


I couldn’t remember birthdays or my anniversary before technology.
At least I get a reminder now. What I find frustrating is looking at a contact in Outlook and racking my brain to figure out who they are.
I think that is called “aging”

Mike Cane

>>>25% of Britons don’t remember their landline number

Man, I can’t even remember my *won* cellphone number. I have to look it up on the phone itself. This kind of such is MENTAL DETRITUS to me and best handled by the tools I buy to handle it for me — PDA, cellphone, etc.

Besides, in the future there won’t be any damned phone *numbers*. We’ll be contacted via unique individual DNA prints.

(Mock me now, but live til 40 years out and you’ll see!)


personally, as a young person who’s been addicted to mobile tech as long as I’ve been able to afford it, I don’t think it’s made me any dumber. I know my landline number, and I keep all my contacts in my head and not my phone. Faster to just remember the number than look it up, heh heh.

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