Email: it's no longer cool! Was it ever? Apparently it was, so I hope you didn't miss your opportunity to use your inbox as a "gauge of Digital Age machismo." Because now email, like The Blob, has turned into a monster that threatens to swallow us all in its pulsating, gelatinous walls. The problem has spread from nerds to regular people, and America is now paying attention. The LA Times even quotes one nerd proclaiming "EMAIL shall henceforth be known as EFAIL." Dang! "All your time are belong to email," I imagine internet scientists saying. And they're more right than you know!: Experts have discovered that Americans no longer go to work to perform actual work; they simply go to work to send and receive email about what would happen if they theoretically were to do some work. When they're not doing this, they're mentally recovering:

According to a report to be published in October by the New York-based research firm Basex, interruptions such as spam, other unnecessary e-mail and instant-messages take up 28% of the average knowledge worker's day. On top of that is what Basex chief analyst Jonathan Spira refers to as recovery time — the time to get back to where you were before you were interrupted, which Spira says is 10 to 20 times the duration of the interruption. These interruptions account for up to 2.1 hours per worker per day. Multiply that by 56 million knowledge workers in the U.S., he calculates, and the cost is $650 billion per year.

By my calculations, that means that after you spend your 2.1 hours per day using email, you spend-on average-another 31.5 hours per day recovering from these hectic interruptions. Email is therefore responsible for a full 33.6 hours per day of your time. It's certainly getting to be a problem. [LAT]