Is information overload a hindrance?

CNET News intern Holly Jackson hits the streets of San Francisco to see how information overload has impacted consumers' professional and personal lives.

If you've ever wanted to unplug your computer and turn off your cell phone for a moment of complete disconnect, you could be dealing with "information overload." This week, the Information Overload Research Group, a new nonprofit dedicated to researching and solving problems caused by the constant flow of information, met in New York for its first conference.

In my search for more information about information overload, I interviewed people on the streets on San Francisco, a pretty tech-savvy town, to see if anyone has an opinion on the helpfulness or burden of information overload.

Most people agreed that our world produces massive amounts of information, delivered immediately with news tickers on TV shows or overflowing work e-mail accounts. While one man admitted he'd never be able to put down his iPhone, another man in the same profession said people need to unplug, rent a cabin, and read a book every once in a while.

What do you think? Is information overload a problem or an opportunity? Or both?

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