Trails within Trails

Last night I was proctoring final exams for my Computer Organization class. The students were quietly busy, and I was able to work on a variety of things on the computer. Later, I took screenshots of my browsing history (thinking of the associative trails concept experience). Here are the results:

Associative Trails

Associative Trails

Now, as I review what I did, I see that I was primarily working on one thing, but took various side trails. Sometimes, those side trails were the result of external influence. I had received an email from the Internet Society concerning a new member area and I needed to update my profile. Took care of that, but also looked at some of the current discussions on the forum. Some of my trails were spurred from the mainline, in which I was following Alan Levine’s tweeted suggestion to leave comments on a random student’s blog. There were problems with that, so I tried a few alternatives. I think I left three comments, but I also think they disappeared (maybe waiting moderation, maybe I wasn’t logged in to my own appropriate account, maybe I did something wrong).

And, during all of this time, I was watching for email notifications that my own students were submitting their tests.

One thing I notice in this experience is that my mind keeps working on the thoughts that have highest priority. This Thoughtvectors course is of high priority because it is a new, high intensity experience of great interest to me, requiring many mind-based products. Even so, my mind still functions on other topics, daily tasks, attention to the needs of the moment, and just plain randomness.

Trails in the Sky photo by Bill  Smith CC-BY

Trails in the Sky
photo by Bill Smith CC-BY

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One Response to Trails within Trails

  1. Sarah Burley says:

    I thought your post was interesting! especially because I am not the only one who seems to “trail off” into different websites in this large internet world. I would also agree that with my mind too, I found that my mind is also always on the focus of the “highest priority”. The only difference I found was that my websites were a lot more scattered and a lot more random.

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