Recall this pivotal scene from the 1997 movie, Men in Black . James Edwards (Will Smith, or Agent J) arrives at the headquarters of MiB - a secret agency that protects Earth from extraterrestrial threats - to compete with "the best of the best" for a position.
How much does environment influence intelligence? Several years ago University of Virginia Professor Eric Turkheimer demonstrated that growing up in an impoverished and chaotic household suppresses I.Q.
By the time he put the finishing touches on the Rite of Spring in November of 1912 in the Châtelard Hotel in Clarens, Switzerland, Stravinsky had spent three years studying Russian pagan rituals, Lithuanian folk songs and crafting the dissonant sacre chord, in which an F-flat major combines with an E-flat major with added minor seventh.
In 1996, Lyle Brenner, Derek Koehler and Amos Tversky conducted a study involving students from San Jose State University and Stanford University. The researchers were interested in how people jump to conclusions based on limited information.
Editor's Note (8/1/12): In July 2012 Jonah Lehrer admitted that he fabricated quotes in his book, Imagine: How Creativity Works, the subject of this blog post.
Gary Marcus is a professor of psychology at NYU, an MIT graduate and a juggler, unicyclist and photographer. A few years ago he set out to conquer one field that had eluded him his whole life: music.
Meet Jonathan Haidt, a professor of social psychology at the University of Virginia who studies morality and emotion. If social psychology was a sport, Haidt would be a Phil Mickelson or Rodger Federer – likable, fun to watch and one of the best.
Embodied cognition, the idea that the mind is not only connected to the body but that the body influences the mind, is one of the more counter-intuitive ideas in cognitive science.
The Minnesota Twins are my favorite baseball team. So I was ecstatic when, back in June, they went on a nine game winning streak to come within a few games of first place.
Chimpanzee research is a hot topic this summer; it has been discussed on the big screen, in the New York Times, and in the science blogosphere. The debate is complicated; there are government funding issues, several ethical dilemmas to consider, and potential benefits to human health at stake.
I'm a big Kanye West fan. He is an immensely talented individual who has sold more albums and gathered more acclaim than most musicians have in several life times.
By now, our overwhelming tendency to look for what confirms our beliefs and ignore what contradicts our beliefs is well documented. Psychologists refer to this as confirmation bias, and its ubiquity is observed in both academia and in our everyday lives: Republicans watch Fox while Democrats watch MSNB; creationists see fossils as evidence of God, evolutionary biologists see fossils as evidence of evolution; doomsayers see signs of the end of the world, and the rest of us see just another day.