It was very easy for me to identify with Robert Carr's, "Is Google Making Us Stupid?" My journey into stupidity begins with Personal Data Assistants. Before PDA's I was able to sit through long meetings with a notepad and take notes, I wouldn't always be paying attention but it looked like I was. When I got a PDA I would sit in those same meetings and take notes on the PDA and still only pay attention 50% of the time. As PDA technology improved I would take notes until there was a subject that didn't concern me and during that part of the meeting I would play games. Over time this taking notes and occasionally playing games changed into mostly playing games. I don't know if this was a change in my attitude towards meetings (99% of what is said can be conveyed in one paragraph in an e-mail) or if this attitude towards meetings was partially driven by my PDA. I'm sure the truth lies somewhere in the middle.
The question is whether or not my multitasking and my new inability to concentrate for extended periods of time was an indication that I was becoming stupid. I can't honestly say that I took as much information from the meetings as I had in the past but I did take away 90% of the information and that information was easier for me to retrieve. The information was memorized instead of hiding somewhere in my notes that would never be looked at again. I have become far better at splitting my consciousness, I can retain information and surf the web at the same time. In fact I was able to enhance what I was learning in those meetings by going online or on the companies interweb and supplementing what I was being told with additional information. I was getting more out of meetings than I had in the past. My ability to sit motionless and pretend I was listening was severely limited but my ability to listen to what was being said was enhanced. Before, if a meeting covered 30 minutes of information that didn't have anything to do with me by the time the important information was disseminated I was so far into daydream mode that many times I did not catch it. With the invention of the PDA I played games for the first 30 minutes and was fresh when the important information came around.
This is all anecdotal evidence in support of what Carr said but it is what I have seen in my own life. I am not sure that I'm getting stupider but I do know that everything has changed.