Parents have been worried for 30 years about what videogames are doing to children's brains and one of the key arguments has been how they get kids to hyperfocus like zombies and not even know whats going on around them. Some kids do that with books.
Two things that seem to be common among successful entrepreneurs are reading books and playing video games. So maybe turn off alerts and play an awesome game? 😀
I think "digital technology" is definitely a broad term and encompasses a lot of different activities (or, ahem, inactivities) which affect our brains differently. There is everything from reading a book to mindlessly scrolling through social media sites or watching silly videos again and again and again.
One concern I have with young kids is that we differentiate between "educational" apps and non-educational apps. To me, that ends up meaning many parents justify extra screen time because something is potentially academic in nature, while ignoring that passive entertainment is still the core of most "educational" apps. And on the flip side, if you're going to be on screens I think there isn't anything inherently wrong with playing a straight up game just for the fun of it.
So far my kids are just 10 and under but we allow e-book reading and an occasional fun or educational video. That's about it on screens, mostly because screens seem to be a battleground for many families and have been for us when I open the door a little bit to them. Another huge reason though, is that I see a marked behavioral change in my kids when they spend time on screens. I see less creativity, more crankiness and more entitlement. Sure, that's a subjective observation but it's enough for me to be very cautious with young brains + screens.
I'm kinda skeptical and always trying not to turn into:
Something is always corrupting our youth and making zombies out of them. Before the internet, there was computer games. Before them it was the TV. Before TV it was the movies. Before the movies it was the comic books. Before that it was cheap novels... No matter which period you look up, you'll always find parents lamenting how the young generation is no good, corrupted and sure to ruin the civilization real soon now.
In reality, kids have, and always will have, impulse control issues. Your duty as a parent is to manage it, help them understand it, provide the tools to handle it, and make sure it doesn't get out of control. That's it. The actual thing they wrestle with is irrelevant.
And yes, they will probably grow up and get to gripe about kids nowadays, what with their AR glasses, totally detached form reality and up to no good. Circle of life. :-)