The Information Diet: A Case For Conscious Consumption

Paper over Board | January 21, 2012

byClay A. Johnson

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The modern human animal spends upwards of 11 hours out of every 24 in a state of constant consumption. Not eating, butgorgingon information ceaselessly spewed from the screens and speakers we hold dear. Just as we have grown morbidly obese on sugar, fat, and flour—so, too, have we become gluttons for texts, instant messages, emails, RSS feeds, downloads, videos, status updates, and tweets.

We're all battling a storm of distractions, buffeted with notifications and tempted by tasty tidbits of information. And just as too much junk food can lead to obesity, too much junk information can lead to cluelessness.The Information Dietshows you how to thrive in this information glut—what to look for, what to avoid, and how to be selective. In the process, author Clay Johnson explains the role information has played throughout history, and why following his prescribed diet is essential for everyone who strives to be smart, productive, and sane.

InThe Information Diet, you will:

  • Discover why eminent scholars are worried about our state of attention and general intelligence
  • Examine how today’s media—Big Info—give us exactly what we want: content that confirms our beliefs
  • Learn to take steps to develop data literacy, attention fitness, and a healthy sense of humor
  • Become engaged in the economics of information by learning how to reward good information providers
  • Just like a normal, healthy food diet,The Information Dietis not about consuming less—it’s about finding a healthy balance that works for you

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    From the Publisher

    The modern human animal spends upwards of 11 hours out of every 24 in a state of constant consumption. Not eating, butgorgingon information ceaselessly spewed from the screens and speakers we hold dear. Just as we have grown morbidly obese on sugar, fat, and flour—so, too, have we become gluttons for texts, instant messages, emails, RS...

    Clay Johnson is best known as the founder of Blue State Digital, the firm that built and managed Barack Obama's online campaign for the presidency in 2008. After leaving Blue State, Johnson was the director of Sunlight Labs at the Sunlight Foundation, where he built an army of 2000 developers and designers to build open source tools to...

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    Format:Paper over BoardDimensions:160 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.63 inPublished:January 21, 2012Publisher:O'Reilly MediaLanguage:English

    The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

    ISBN - 10:1449304680

    ISBN - 13:9781449304683

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    Table of Contents

    Dedication Preface Part I: Introduction Chapter 1: Lessons from Obesity Chapter 2: Information, Power, and Survival Chapter 3: Big Info Chapter 4: We Are What We Seek Chapter 5: Welcome to Information Obesity Chapter 6: The Symptoms of Information Obesity Part II: The Information Diet Chapter 7: Data Literacy Chapter 8: Attention Fitness Chapter 9: A Healthy Sense of Humor Chapter 10: How to Consume Part III: Social Obesity Chapter 11: The Participation Gap A Special Note: Dear Programmer Further Reading