Deep Work

Cal Newport

The author makes solid points for his vision of deep work—that is long time of distraction free effort to make something new. The opposite is shallow work which is something that does not requires your full attention but does not outputs anything novel. Most of the time it just make you look busy and because lot of people think that busyness equals intensive work, it is becoming the new standard.

While Deep Work contains a lot of abstract ideas, there are handful of very specific ones that you can act upon. I liked this book but I will need to reread it once again to apprehend it fully.

A foundation for our answer can be found in a warning provided by the late communication theorist and New York University professor Neil Postman. Writing in the early 1990s, as the personal computer revolution first accelerated, Postman argued that our society was sliding into a troubling relationship with technology. We were, he noted, no longer discussing the trade-offs surrounding new technologies, balancing the new efficiencies against the new problems introduced. If it’s high-tech, we began to instead assume, then it’s good. Case closed.

He called such a culture a technopoly, and he didn’t mince words in warning against it. “Technopoly eliminates alternatives to itself in precisely the way Aldous Huxley outlined in Brave New World,” he argued in his 1993 book on the topic. “It does not make them illegal. It does not make them immoral. It does not even make them unpopular. It makes them invisible and therefore irrelevant.”

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