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Are we evolving to walk and text?

Another reason we may not be complaining about texting walkers is that they’re less awkward. Why don’t they fall down or walk into other people? Research suggests that these texters adopt protective measures to minimize the risk of accidents when walking. They’re less likely to trip because they shorten their step length, reduce step frequency, lengthen the time during which both feet are in contact with the ground, and increase obstacle clearance height. Taken together this creates an exaggerated image of walking, but it apparently slows the walker enough so that he registers some of what is happening around him and can compensate for it.

The impact of texting and walking is that it slows the walker down. So we’re all connected but it may take us longer to get to each other—which may be okay since we’ve likely texted the person that we’re on our way and then given a play-by-play of our progress as we update social media along the way.

A fascinating study.

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