The "Ask Google" Syndrome.

As a full time developer, I spend a large part of my life on my laptop and when I’m doing anything else, my smartphone is only an arm’s length away.  It has become so easy to develop what I call the “Ask Google” syndrome, the primary symptom being “the unthinkingly reaction  to any unknown is to search google”. Replace Google with your favorite tool of choice…Yelp, TripAdvisor, StackOverflow, Bing.

Consciously attempt to catch yourself in the act for a day. I was amazed at how often I do it, most of the time without giving the question or problem any independent thought.  I’ve been guilty of this behavior for so long its second nature and that scares me.

Asking Google is equivalent to cramming in school.  You will more than likely get the correct answer but long term retention and a deep understanding of the material is highly unlikely. The syndrome is highly compounding since a deep understanding of the solution (and more than likely the problem) is not achieved.  The next time a similar issue is encountered you will be forced to google the same thing again. There is so much to be gained from working through a problem. Like your teachers always said, “Show your work”!