– Laurie Riedman, Xerox public relations consultant
New Year’s resolutions are the subject du jour in early January – aren’t they?
While the most common resolutions usually have something to do with eating better or getting to the gym – I was surprised a few of my friends have resolved to deal with their overflowing in-boxes and find solutions to help them manage all the information coming at them from the Über–Connected techno-crazed world we live in.
Considering the fact that I still play ‘remote-roulette‘ every time I try to turn on our mega HDTV surround-sound set up in our family room (we’ve had it well over a year now and I still can’t turn the thing on …. ) — I’m probably not the best person to suggest technology solutions.
Lucky for me I know and work with quite a few techno-hip people in the Xerox R&D group. So, I did some searching and asked Dave Peck. Peck works at the infamous Palo Alto Research Center and is part of a team of really smart folks who for all I know drive electric cars sporting bumper stickers that say ‘information is power’ or ‘tweet this’.
Clearly Peck could help me because he not only gets this whole information overload thing, but he is working on Meshin – a Xerox funded project to develop an email plug-in designed to help us filter, find and sort all kind of information — email messages, RSS feeds and social networks.
Peck feels our challenge today is not too much information but in filtering and finding the information we need when we need it.
Peck recently penned a great blog post titled “How Do We Stop Information Overload”. Check it out because in it he describes the symptoms of information overload – loss of time, productivity and even losing your mind. (O.K. — I added that last one). But he does mention the inability to concentrate and stay on one task at a time. (Hey — when was the last time you did less than three things at a time? Flashback to those good ‘ol days when you simply just drove your car without talking, texting or fiddling with your iPod to select your driving playlist?)
While Peck doesn’t mention specific solutions in the post — Meshin is on it. Check out this Meshin video that explains what they are up to. I’m going to suggest my friends take Meshin for a spin by downloading a Meshin beta version here. It just may help them keep their new year’s resolution.*
Now, if they could only develop a plug in that will cut the calories in cheese cake – that would help me keep mine!
*Updated November 21, 2017.