English 1020 Final

English as a whole has always been difficult for me to grasp, as a subject in school as well in the “real world.” English 1020 has provided a hard learning experience needed for me to truly learn to write. In this class I have expanded by ability to write exponentially. My goals to be learned and worked on after this class is to become a better free writer.

Through the coarse I have been able to give my opinion on article in class, which have really helped me become a better writer through critiquing others students works. Seeing what others write about the same topic helps me see what see ideas in my own easy better. Analyzing major articles and evaluating these written works shows me more about how to present an argument for my readers. As well as showing me the how to look at works with a glance to check on facts and the argument itself.

Through the formal assignments I have been able to put my own opinions into the class. This makes me more interested in writing as well as giving me a chance to practice writing. Before the class, I had difficulty putting an essay together without many errors. Making outlines and revising my papers has helped me build in my experience. Having others review my papers and giving me feed back has helped me see what others may think about a phrase or sentence placement.

 My writing ability has grown through this class, however I know I need to work on being able to write more freely. Everything I write I rewrite multiple times to make sure no major mistakes are present. Making sentence fragments or non-coherent phrase are the worse part of my writing ability. Grammar has become less of an issue but still is present and I need to become better at seeing these issues first hand. Being able to write and write well is necessary for my future aspirations and I will always have to work on it.

English 1020 has shown me enough difficulty to allow me to turn in what I feel is my best writing. My ability to write has become so much more than I ever thought possible. Free writing will be an issue and must be worked on constantly. English is Important to everybody in every way. I hope to continue on becoming the best writer I can be.  

Solving World Hunger: Weigh the Benefits and Risks of Genetically Modified Foods

The world faces a growing problem. The rapid growth of the human population has created some very serious issues worldwide including food shortages and malnourishment. However, science and technology offer a solution for the world’s food scarcity in the form of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Through the use genetics, crops can be made resistant to herbicides like Round Up, and can be engineered with natural pesticides. This in turn makes the crops better for the environment and increases their yield. There are some who express concerns about the use and consumption of genetically modified foods. Anti-GMO activists believe that genetically engineered crops are not safe and pose environmental and economic threats. An analysis of the benefits of using genetically modified food and the arguments against their use will show that GMOs are not only safe, but also necessary for the survival of the human race.

According to the United Nations Fund for Population Activities, the population of the world has more than doubled since 1970, and now exceeds 7.2 billion. Despite the fact that the population growth rate is beginning to slow, the world’s total population should reach 8.1 billion by 2025. Much of this growth “is expected to be particularly dramatic in the least developed countries of the world, which are projected to double in size from 898 million inhabitants in 2013 to 1.8 billion in 2050” (“Linking Population, Poverty and Development”). This will exacerbate the already severe problem of food shortages.

In the LiveScience article “What 11 Billion People Mean for Food Security”, Rachael Rettner states that “To feed just 9 billion people (the estimated population in 2050) would require a 60 percent increase in the number of food calories available for human consumption”. That is not including the increase in crop production required to feed livestock. The production rate of crops will have to double to meet the increased demand as the world’s population approaches 9 billion. As food becomes scarcer, more and more people will find themselves without enough food to survive.

Malnutrition is a serious issue particularly in developing nations. Poverty is one of the leading factors contributing to malnourishment. According to the Canadian Medical Association Journal article “Malnutrition and Health in Developing Countries”, “Diets in populations [in developing countries] are frequently deficient in macronutrients (protein, carbohydrates and fat, leading to protein–energy malnutrition), micronutrients (electrolytes, minerals and vitamins, leading to specific micronutrient deficiencies) or both.” Olaf Müller and Michael Krawinkel suggest “a possible future strategy to prevent micronutrient deficiencies is to breed micronutrient-rich crops, through either conventional breeding techniques or genetic modification of existing crops.

“Genetically modified foods (or GM foods) are foods produced from organisms that have had specific changes introduced into their DNA using the methods of genetic engineering” (“Genetically modified food”). People have been modifying food for centuries. Biotechnology began thousands of years ago when people began using yeast and malts for fermentation. “Scientists first discovered that DNA can transfer between organisms in 1946” (“Genetically modified food”). This led to the first genetically modified crop in 1983. Over time, the development and cultivation of genetically modified crops has become more widespread. “Plants are now engineered for insect resistance, fungal resistance, viral resistance, herbicide resistance, changed nutritional content, improved taste, and improved storage” (“Genetically modified food”). These modifications have several important benefits for the world.

Genetically modified crops are beneficial for the environment. Some crops like corn and soybeans have been engineered to be resistant to herbicides. This allows farmers to use less toxic, more effective herbicides to combat weeds in their fields. The use of these less toxic chemicals means less ground and water pollution. Other crops have been modified to produce proteins that are toxic to insects and fungi. Farmers using these GMOs greatly reduce the amount of pesticides needed. Certain genetic modification of crops can increase the plant’s resistance to other environmental factors such as drought. This makes them very desirable to many developing countries that suffer from lack of rainfall or other water sources.

Genetically modified crops have been engineered to contain a higher nutritional value. “Second-generation GM crops involve enhanced quality traits, such as higher nutrient content. ‘Golden Rice,’ one of the very first GM crops, is biofortified to address vitamin A deficiency, a common condition in developing countries that leads to blindness and entails higher rates of child mortality and infectious diseases” (Qaim). Golden rice and other biofortified crops help to improve the health conditions and reduced malnourishment in many developing nations by providing staple foods with increased nutritional value.

Additional benefits of GMOs include economic considerations. For example, genetically modified cotton “produces 82 percent higher incomes for small-farm households compared with conventional cotton” (Qaim). In addition, the use of genetically modified cotton has “increased the aggregate welfare by over $2 billion per year in India alone” (Qaim). This is due in part to the reduction in production costs associated with GM crops. Additional economic implications include the hiring of a large workforce to facilitate the harvesting of GM crops.

One of the most influential reasons many farmers choose genetically modified crops is the higher yield per acre they produce. The combination of insect and herbicide resistance, drought tolerance, and improved storage create greater yields and returns on investment than conventional crops. Despite these benefits, some farmers and anti-GMO activists have raised concerns over the cultivation and consumption of genetically modified foods.

One of the reasons some farmers choose to plant conventional seeds over GM seeds is nature’s ability to adapt to changes in the environment. As farmers began to use Roundup ready crops, they began to rely almost entirely on glyphosate based herbicides. In his US News article “Herbicide-Resistant ‘Super Weeds’ Increasingly Plaguing Farmers”, Jason Koebler explains that “after years of constant exposure, certain invasive plants have also developed a resistance, leading farmers to use more of the chemical. In some cases, the weeds have grown completely tolerant to the chemical.” The problem lies with the use of the same chemical year after year. Those weeds that manage to survive, are able pass their glyphosate resistance on to new generations of weeds. According to Koebler, “Farmers are turning to more traditional methods of weed management, such as using cover crops, crop rotations, and physically pulling weeds to lessen their reliance on Roundup. But those solutions are time consuming and expensive.” A similar situation is believed to be happening with insects exposed to genetically modified crops. Specifically, rootworms are becoming resistant to Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) crops such as corn and cotton. Many farmers fear that these colonies of Bt resistant rootworms will spread and devastate their crops. In addition to these concerns, many anti-GMO activists have expressed strong opposition genetically engineered foods.

According to Deborah B. Whitman, author of “Genetically Modified Foods: Harmful or Helpful?” states that “most concerns about GM foods fall into three categories: environmental hazards, human health risks, and economic concerns.” Environmental activists believe that there are other serious environmental implications with respect to the use of genetically engineered crops besides the emergence of herbicide resistant Super Weeds and pesticide resistant Super Insects. “Bt toxins kill many species of insect larvae indiscriminately; it is not possible to design a Bt toxin that would only kill crop-damaging pests and remain harmless to all other insects” (Whitman). They also believe that GM crops cause an increase in pollution because farmers that use GM crops actually use more chemicals than conventional crop farmers.

Anti-GMO activists also raise health concerns. Whitman notes that “There is a possibility that introducing a gene into a plant may create a new allergen or cause an allergic reaction in susceptible individuals.” The biggest health concern is “that introducing foreign genes into food plants may have an unexpected and negative impact on human health” (Whitman).

Another concern presented by anti-GMO activists is pricing. Large biotech corporations that create these genetically modified seeds patent their technology in hopes to protect their investment and generate profits. “Consumer advocates are worried that patenting these new plant varieties will raise the price of seeds so high that small farmers and third world countries will not be able to afford seeds for GM crops, thus widening the gap between the wealthy and the poor” (Whitman). These higher priced seeds may also increase the costs of foods for consumers. However, there are strong counter-arguments against the beliefs held by anti-GMO activists.

In his blog post titled “Decimating the Flawed Beliefs of Anti-GMO Activists”, Emil Karlsson provides several arguments the anti-GMO views. For instance, he notes that the scientific community supports the use of genetically modified food. “GM foods are stringently tested, heavily regulated and safe, both for human consumption and the environment” (Karlsson). The fear that the toxic protein produced by Bt crops is harmful to humans is misguided. Karlsson notes that the toxin is harmless to all organisms except those that meet three specific criteria. “The stomach environment needs to be alkaline (humans have acidic) to dissolve the aggregate of inactive precursors, a specific protease needs to be there to cleave the precursor into the active form of the toxin (humans do not have it) and there needs to exist a specific receptor on the stomach lining for the toxin to bind to have its lethal effects (humans lack this receptor)” (Karlsson). While no food is completely safe, GM crops are as safe as the conventional alternative.

GM crops are also better for the environment. Karlsson cites a National Research Council report that shows that “as the adoption of GM corn has increased, the amount of insecticides used has decreased.” The report also concludes that “the increase in acres planted with plants resistant to the herbicide glyphosate has of course increased the use of glyphosate. However, this has decreased the use of other herbicides that are much more toxic.” Another benefit of using herbicide resistant plants is the reduction in the erosion. Farmers using these GM crops no longer have to plow to remove weeds.

Although genetically modified seeds cost more than conventional seeds, the reduction in production costs more than make up for it. Some of the production benefits include lower fuel costs from little or no plowing, fewer chemicals such as pesticides and herbicides are needed, and the plants are more resistant to environmental factors like cold and drought. In addition, farmers that do not want to use genetically engineered seeds can still buy “conventional seeds from seed companies, participate in the legal trading of seeds and even save conventional seeds from their harvest. No one is forcing farmers to buy genetically modified seeds” (Karlsson).

In order to determine if genetically modified crops offer a viable solution in the battle against world hunger and malnutrition, an analysis of the potential risks and benefits of GMOs is necessary. Some of the concerns about the cultivation and consumption of GM foods are valid. The evidence of weeds adapting to glyphosate based herbicides is real and needs to be addressed. Some potential solutions include crop rotation, and varying herbicides on a yearly basis. The key to preventing the spread of herbicide resistant weeds is to ensure that weeds treated with any chemical do not survive. A similar solution can be applied to the emergence of super insects like Bt resistant rootworms.

Another legitimate concern associated with GMOs is allergenicity. “There is a possibility that introducing a gene into a plant may create a new allergen or cause an allergic reaction in susceptible individuals” (Whitman: Genetically Modified Foods: Harmful or Helpful?). Extensive testing may be necessary to prevent unexpected allergic reactions. Proper labeling of foods can help reduce the number of allergic reactions to GM foods.

Aside from these concerns, most of the anti-GMO rhetoric is misguided or completely false. There is no evidence that the consumption of genetically modified crops is harmful to humans. On the other hand, rigorous testing and numerous studies have found that these crops are no more harmful than their conventional counterparts. Other studies conclude that the use of GMOs has a positive impact on pollution in the environment.

Cultivating GM crops also has a positive impact on the economy. In addition to the reduction in production costs, farmers also benefit from increased yields. The genetically engineered plants’ resistance to disease, insects, fungus, cold, and drought allow them to survive and produce more reliably than conventional crops. In developing countries, these larger yields directly impact the local community by increasing the number of available jobs. The increase in jobs helps reduce poverty levels and malnutrition.

In conclusion, the benefits that genetically modified foods offer the world far outweigh the potential risks. As the world’s population continues to grow, the demand for food will grow as well. In order to combat food shortages and malnutrition, particularly for those in developing nations, food production must be able to keep up with the growing population. GM crops provide more food per acre than conventional crops. They can be engineered to withstand harsher environments which are unsuitable for non-GM crops. This allows for more land to be used for the production of food. Increased production of staple food sources like corn and wheat are absolutely necessary to secure the world’s food supply. These genetically modified crops can also relieve malnourishment by providing sources of food enriched with essential vitamins and nutrients. Malnutrition is a serious problem that affects millions of people, and will become an even bigger problem as the population in third world countries continues to rise. Genetically engineered crops offer a viable solution to both food shortages and malnourishment. GMOs will continue to improve through advances in science and technology. They are necessary for the survival of the human race, and will become a vital resource for the future of mankind.

 

References

“Genetically modified food.” Wikipedia. Wikimedia Foundation, 5 Apr. 2014. Web. 26 Apr. 2014.

Karlsson, Emil. “Decimating the Flawed Beliefs of Anti-GMO Activists.” Debunking Denialism. Debunking Denialism, 25 Aug. 2013. Web. 27 Apr. 2014.

Koebler, Jason. “Herbicide-Resistant ‘Super Weeds’ Increasingly Plaguing Farmers.” US News. U.S.News & World Report, 19 Oct. 2012. Web. 26 Apr. 2014.

“Linking Population, Poverty and Development.” Population Trends: Rapid Growth in Less Developed Regions: Population & Development : UNFPA. United Nations Population Fund, n.d. Web. 26 Apr. 2014.

Müller, Olaf, and Michael Krawinkel. “Malnutrition and Health in Developing Countries.” Canadian Medical Association Journal 173: n. 3. CMAJ. Web. 29 Apr. 2014.

Qaim, Matin. “The Benefits of Genetically Modified Crops-and the Costs of Inefficient Regulation.” Resources for the Future, 10 Apr. 2010. Web. 26 Apr. 2014.

Rettner, Rachael. “What 11 Billion People Mean for Food Security.” LiveScience. TechMedia Network, 19 Nov. 2013. Web. 25 Apr. 2014.

Whitman, Deborah B.. “Genetically Modified Foods: Harmful or Helpful?.” . ProQuest, 1 Apr. 2010. Web. 18 Apr. 2014.

The Benefits of Genetically Modified Foods

Genetically modified foods have a great opportunity to change how humans look at food. There are several reasons to take advantage of the ability to genetically modify foods. For example, GMO produce such as corn can be engineered to be unaffected by herbicides like Round Up, and can reduce the number of chemicals used to grow these crops. GMOs also offer a solution to help eliminate malnutrition and vitamin deficiencies through higher yield and more nutritious crops. However, anti-GMO activists express concerns over the use of genetically engineered food. They believe GMOs are unhealthy for human consumption and have a negative effect on the environment. An analysis of the benefits of using genetically modified food and the arguments against their use will show that GMOs are not only safe, but also necessary for the survival of the human race. Farmers use a considerable amount of herbicide and insecticide to keep their crops healthy until harvest. This has a large impact on the environment as these chemicals can pollute the air and water tables. These pollutants can have lasting negative effects on surrounding plant life. Genetically modified crops can be engineered in such a way that they naturally produce insecticides, and can be resistant to herbicides. This allows farmers to reduce or even eliminate the use of chemical sprays. This in turn is less harmful to the environment. GMOs crops have been tested and have been deemed safe for human consumption. In addition, these new crops allow farmers to increase their yield per acre, thus helping feed an ever growing population. Many third world countries have millions of people that are starving and malnourished. GMOs offer a way for both needs to be met. For instance, the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Institute for Plant Sciences has engineered ‘Golden Rice’ which has a high vitamin A and protein. This specially designed food source can help alleviate the problems of malnutrition by providing a source of essentials vitamins while also feeding a starving community. Also, the new crops have been engineered to be drought resistant. In areas where water is scarce, the staple crops will still grow and produce. Despite these benefits, the use of genetically modified crops presents some concerns for farmers. Farmers have a few concerns when it comes to the use of GMOs. The fear of a pesticide resistant insect or “Super-Insects” has become a main issue farmer’s face in regards to GMOs. If insects adapt and become unaffected by normal chemicals, an entire crop could be destroyed. Another key concern for farmers is the “Super-Weed”, which is an herbicide resistant weed. This could spread large distances and cause problems for many farmers. The weeds could choke of crops and prevent them from producing. Farmers can prevent these things from happening by spraying chemicals to ensure the weeds and insects don’t survive. A stronger opposition to the use of genetically engineered foods comes from the anti-GMO activists. Anti-GMO activists have many concerns over the continued use of genetically modified crops. For instance, they state that consumption of these foods can cause many health problems. They also believe that the use of GMO crops will increase the use of chemicals and inevitably cause more damage to the environment. Activists also point to the fact that most GMO crops are patented by large corporations as an indicator that the cost of seeds and finished produce will rise so much that they will not be viable to use. Many countries have gone so far as to ban the use of GMOs or even the importation of those crops. Another major concern for activist is the freedom of choice at the supermarket. They demand that companies be forced to label GMO products and let the consumer decide. Despite these concerns, evidence shows that with the rapid increase in population, there is an inherent need faster, larger, and cheaper production of food. GMOs provide a solution to our world’s growing malnutrition and food scarcity problems. Genetically engineering better, more nutritious crops is the future of food production, and will ensure the survival of the human race.   Work Cited Deborah B. Whitman. “Genetically Modified Foods: Harmful or Helpful.” CSA ProQuest Web Post, April 2000 Mark R. O’Brian. “Don’t Fear GMOs.” Buffalo News. Web post April 8, 2014. Dr. Oz. “Genetically Modified Foods: Get The Facts.” The Doctors. Web post October 17, 2012

Annotated Bibliography

Deborah B. Whitman. “Genetically Modified Foods: Harmful or Helpful.” CSA ProQuest Web Post, April 2000

Genetically Modified Foods have been a highly controversial issue for good and bad reasons. Increasing population has put strain on farmers to produce more food and cheaper. Malnutrition and lack of essential vitamins has also increased the need to genetically modify foods to meet the needs of the countries in need of certain food crops with more benefits. The population is worried about the environmental impact and consequences of consuming the foods for humans. “Super-Weeds and Super-Pest” Are of a big concern for farmers and the consumers are afraid of these effects on health of humans. People are in agreement that something needs to be done in the search to feed more than 6 million people on earth.

This Article is a good source of information from both sides of the issue. It shows the fears of those against it like health problems for consuming such products. As well as voicing the need for GMOs in the world to feed a starving overpopulated world. With that it also states the concerns farmers have when it comes to super pest or super weeds.

 

Mark R. O’Brian. “Don’t Fear GMOs.” Buffalo News. Web post April 8, 2014.

When it comes to GMOs the main concern from anti-GMO activist is labeling GMO to give the consumer the choice on which food to buy. An important concern they have is that the crops may have a larger impact on the environment than the chemicals used to grow non-GMO crops. The scientific community believes that GMOs are completely safe for both humans and the environment.

This article has a slight bias way of taking up for GMOs however he uses scientific data and studies to prove his point. GMOs are safe. The author of this article has credibility on the subject as a Professor of Biochemistry. He does that certain steps need to be taking so the consumer and not the big corporations are in control.

Dr. Oz. “Genetically Modified Foods: Get The Facts.” The Doctors. Web post October 17, 2012

The doctors show you the overwhelming statistics about our food supply. Stating 80% of our food has GMO content, and that they undergo the heaviest amount of testing of any food crop. In addition to the facts they also want to show you ways of avoiding GMO’s if someone would want to. Such as going organic and staying away from certain foods altogether or looking at labeling.

The doctors have used a logical scientific argument when the concerns of GMO’s come up. They present statistics from the FDA and USDA, with a list of benefits and concerns the public have.

Mid Term Essay

My writing ability has grown from self-motivation, the need to become more literate, as well as the progression of teachers who looked at teaching differently. Not being a good writer from the beginning caused me to look at my writings first and making the necessary changes before turning in the paper. My goals in college and in life called for me to become a better writer as well as a critical thinker of other writings. Teachers in my past have helped me build a platform to support my abilities as a writer and improve on them.

English has always been a constant struggle for me while in school and out. This has caused me to look more critically at my writing before sending or posting the papers for anyone to see. I have become dependent on spell check, I am a terrible speller. Teachers in high school tried to make me more literate, but what really helps me is not more knowledge on how to write, it’s time to write revise and rewrite before turning the paper in.

With the progression of this class I have been able to better summarize articles, which has always been a weakness of mine. Another key thing I have learned from “Living Online” is how to better see writings from a point of view I did not agree with and write about them. I was never challenged with this in high school, we wrote about books and topics we picked ourselves, which helped me become better able to put my own thought down on paper but not so much when it pertained to other opinions. My main goal for this class is to be able to better integrate quotes into my essays to make the content of my writes flow more smoothly. As well as becoming more consistent with my analysis of other arguments.

My major and career will involve writing a great deal, I plan to go back to Mississippi State and major in Agriculture Education which both require tedious writings. Self-assessments and peer reviews help me better read what others have written and gives me a chance to express my opinions and ideas on how to make their writing better, this in turn helps me fix my writing mistakes. As well as preparing for eventually grading papers turned in by future students.

Not everybody is a good writer, but the need in this world for people to read and write well is too great not to strive for an ability to do these better. Self-motivation is all it takes to start the process of developing the skills needed to write well. Every job and career has a necessity to be a well-spoken and written employee. Help from teachers who think outside the box can really open up the ability of any skill level of writers to become who they need to be.

Focusing on a single task

Both multitasking and single tasking have a major effect on a person’s productivity not only in the workplace, but also academically as well as other aspects in everyday life. While multitasking, a person attempts to force their brain to focus on two or more duties simultaneously. Single tasking on the other hand, is the act of focusing on one project or activity at a time. Despite the fact that many people believe that peak performance in productivity and efficiency can be achieved through multitasking, several studies have shown the opposite is true. In his blog post “What multitasking does to our brains”, Leo Widrich provides insight as to why people multitask and what is actually happening when they do so, as well as some techniques designed to focus on the task at hand. Likewise, Dr. Jim Taylor’s article “Multitasking is Out, Single Tasking is In” offers information on the pitfalls of multitasking, while presenting methods to improve productivity through single tasking. Although these two articles cover the same topic and share a similar point of view, a comparison will illustrate some key differences. Further analysis will show that while both articles give useful information for becoming a more focused and productive person, “Multitasking is Out, Single Tasking is In” is more effective at providing the tools necessary to become more proficient at single tasking.

Leo Widrich suggests that it is common knowledge that in order “to work efficiently [one has] to single task”. Yet even knowing this, the average person will inevitably attempt to handle several activities at once. To address the cause of this multitasking phenomenon, Widrich cites a study that shows “[people who multitask] are not being more productive – they just feel more emotionally satisfied from their work.” He cites another study that suggests that people tend to admire those who tackle so many tasks at once and “want to be like them.” Widrich’s article also describes how the brain handles multitasking by “frantically switch[ing] between the activit[ies]”. He then goes on to relate his own multitasking habit and the “key changes [he] made to develop a full-on single tasking focus.” These included having only a single browser tab open at one time, creating and discussing the to-do list for the next day, and changing where he works on a task daily. The article “What multitasking does to our brains” gives some insight into how the author became more single task oriented by following a few simple techniques.

Similarly, Dr. Jim Taylor’s article “Multitasking Is Out, Single Tasking Is In” offers advice on “how to effectively engage in single tasking.” Duties should be prioritized, and expectations on what can be accomplished daily should be lowered. He suggests that this will reduce stress and “produce higher quality work” (“Multitasking is Out”). He also provides tips on how to handle potential crises that inevitably come up, and how to delegate some of the workload to team members or colleagues. Taylor then lists “some of the most common multitasking distractions and recommend[s] solutions” (“Multitasking is Out”). These include closing office doors or facing away from the walkway, creating a comfortable workspace and keeping it organized, turning off smartphones or other devices, and clearing the work area of everything except the desired task. Taylor’s article “Multitasking is Out, Single Tasking is In” provides valuable information on “learn[ing] how to focus more effectively.”

Both articles exhibit strength in their styles of writing. Widrich’s informal style is easily understood and relatable to many younger people. Taylor’s style is more formal and very organized. Neither article offers any counterarguments. However, Taylor cites one of his previous articles in which he does provide arguments to caution readers that some of the research does not replicate real world scenarios. His reasoning behind this is the fact that study wasn’t representative of the population since it only used college students as the test subjects. Also, according to Taylor “the tasks that they engaged in were not real-life activities but rather analog tasks that purport to test the same attributes as multitasking” (“Myth of Multitasking”). The authors maintain that it is well known that multitasking is worse than single tasking with regard to productivity and efficiency. Another weakness in Widrich’s article is the title itself. “What multitasking does to our brains” leads the reader to believe much of the article will be about the effect that multitasking has on a person’s brain. However, this topic is limited to a small section in the article. The bulk of the material in the article covers Widrich’s own experiences with multitasking and how he “developed a singletasking workflow online by adding a twist to well-known techniques.” Taylor on the other hand, provides several general tips to improve single tasking and even offers some specific advice on handling distractions.

Widrich’s article “What multitasking does to our brains” offers little value when compared to the article “Multitasking is Out, Single Tasking is In” by Dr. Jim Taylor. With the exception of the to-do list, Widrich’s techniques are too specific to his own job to be of much use elsewhere. This is especially true of his so-called “singletab browsing” method. Widrich is in charge of managing multiple social media platforms including Twitter and Facebook, as well as the company’s customer support helpdesk. It makes sense for Widrich to limit himself to a single browser tab in order to force himself to focus on the task at hand. This isn’t necessarily practical for the many other working environments that require research. For instance, a student attempting to write a paper comparing two sources of information would likely find it more productive and efficient to have both articles opened simultaneously. However, the suggestions by Taylor can not only be applied to the workplace, but also to an academic environment. Following some of the tips that Taylor provides will bring about a substantial increase in productivity and efficiency. Therefore, Dr. Taylor’s Huffington Post article “What multitasking does to our brains” is far more effective at providing the tools necessary to become more proficient at single tasking than the Buffer article by Leo Widrich.

Works Cited

Taylor, Jim. “Multitasking is Out, Single Tasking is In.” The Huffington Post. HuffingtonPost.com, Inc., Apr. 8, 2011. Web. Feb. 25, 2014

Taylor, Jim. “The Myth of Multitasking.” Web log post. The Blog of Dr. Jim Taylor. Dr. Jim Taylor, 20 Nov. 2008. Web. 25 Feb. 2014.

Widrich, Leo. “What multitasking does to our brains.” BufferApp. Buffer. Jun. 26, 2012. Web. Feb. 25, 2014.

Privacy or more ways to get fired?

“Did Internet Kill Privacy?” shows us how easily our personal life and privacy can effect our public and professional life. Ashley Payne a teacher, was asked to resign her position over a picture taken off school property in her trip to Europe. The school stated an upset parent called to complain. Which called for action on the schools part.

The argument sets up by showing that teachers are like everybody else. They take vacations and have pictures to prove it. Privacy is important to most people and Mrs. Payne had her privacy violated by the school. It shows how easily anything we put on the internet can be shared and found no matter how private the information was. This article showed us to be care what we put on the web, and think more critically with our rhetoric  online.