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  - in the historical Japanese kana/kanji orthography

・116.0 The Internet has made it …

2017-07-17 | 出題英文讀解

次の英文を読み、設問に答えなさい。

     The Internet has made it much easier – and more entertaining – to slack off at the office.  In a widely cited survey from 2005, people said that the Net was their favorite way to waste time at work.  Businesses have responded by trying, in various ways, to restrict access.  One study found that half of all companies block access to Facebook and Twitter.  Other companies cut off online shopping sites and YouTube.  And many companies have an “acceptable use policy,” making it clear that when you’re supposed to be finishing your business reports you should not be watching that excellent new video of a dog howling along to its own piano-playing.

     Fair enough, you might say.  However, plenty of new research suggests that forcing Internet-addicted employees to *go cold turkey may make them less productive, not more.  (1) A new study, done at the University of Copenhagen, asked participants to perform a simple task – watch videos of people passing balls and count the number of passes.  But first they were presented with a distraction.  One group of participants had a funny video come up on their screens; the rest saw a message telling them that a funny video was available if they clicked a button, but they were told not to watch it.  After ten minutes, during which people in the second group could hear those in the first laughing at the video, everyone set to the task of counting the number of passes.  And the curious result was that those who hadn’t watched the comedy video made significantly more mistakes than those who had.  You might have thought that those who had spent the previous ten minutes laughing would become distracted and careless.  Instead, (2) it was the act of following company policy and not clicking that button that hindered people’s ability to focus and concentrate.

     The basic idea here is that for most people willpower is a limited resource: if we spend lots of energy controlling our impulses in one area, it becomes harder to control our impulses in others.  Or, as the psychologist Roy Baumeister puts it, willpower is like a muscle: overuse temporarily exhausts it.  The implication is that asking people to regulate their behavior without interruption may very well make them less focused and less effective.

     So what should companies do?  They could just remove the temptation entirely and shut down access to most Web sites.  After all, if the people in the Copenhagen experiment hadn’t known there was a video they could have been watching, they would presumably have counted the passes just fine.  There are companies that try to do (3) this, but it creates a tyrannical work environment, and, besides, the spread of smartphones renders such a policy increasingly unenforceable.  A more interesting solution, proposed by the Copenhagen experimenters, would be to create “Internet breaks,” allowing workers to periodically spend a few minutes online.  This may sound like a solution straight out of *Oscar Wilde, who said, “The only way to get rid of temptation is to yield to it.”  But it’s actually a logical evolution of one of the great inventions of the twentieth century: the coffee break.  (4) In the nineteenth century, letting wage-earners stand around drinking coffee would have seemed outrageous.  But, in the early nineteen-hundreds, a company introduced the idea of short breaks in the workday, and by mid-century it had become an accepted office custom.  The basic insight – that giving people some relief from difficult tasks, along with the chance to let their minds wander, will make them more productive – remains true.  Sometimes, it turns out, (   (5)   ).

  *go cold turkey: stop suddenly and completely

  *Oscar Wilde (1854–1900): an Irish playwright, poet, and novelist

 

問1. 下線部(1) A new study の実験結果を40字以内の日本語で具体的に説明しなさい。ただし、句読点も字数に含む。

問2. 下線部(2)を日本語に訳しなさい。

問3.  下線部(3) this の表す内容を日本語で具体的に説明しなさい。

問4.  下線部(4)を日本語に訳しなさい。

問5.  空所(5)に入る最も適切なものを次の(a)~(e)から選び、記号で答えなさい。

  (a)  the use of smartphones creates a tyrannical work environment

  (b)  success comes only through devotion to the task at hand

  (c)  to achieve greatness in life, we must also do things which we do not enjoy

  (d)  you have to take your eye off the target in order to hit it

  (e)  the Internet is a wasteful distraction in the work place

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