It may not be uncommon to see someone typing out an email on their phone as they walk down the street, listen to music as they read the newspaper on the subway, or stare at a computer screen with multiple windows and tabs open. But despite constantly juggling different activities, humans are not very good at multitasking, experts say.
Dividing attention across multiple activities is taxing on the brain, and can often come at the expense of real productivity, said Arthur Markman, a professor in the department of psychology at the University of Texas at Austin.
“There’s a small number of people who are decent multitaskers — this concept of a ‘supertasker’ — but at best, it’s maybe 10 percent of the population, so chances are, you’re not one of them,” Markman told LiveScience. “The research out there will tell you that there are a couple of people who are good at it, but it’s probably not you.”
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