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Can Neuro-Music Boost Your Productivity?

Work environments today are noisy and distracting. As Maria Konnikova writes in a recent New Yorker article, open office plans are a big culprit. One study describes the effects of open environments as “damaging to the workers’ attention spans, productivity, creative thinking, and satisfaction.” One effect of open environments is that now many office workers sport headphones and use music to reduce distraction levels.

Music isn’t necessarily a panacea for increasing productivity; it can be a distraction itself. Konnikova cites a study by psychologist Nick Pelham that showed music impaired the mental acuity of his subjects. But one company, focus@will, claims to have the solution. They produce music tracks they say have been optimized for allowing the listener to focus and concentrate. […]

By |January 9th, 2014|

Neuroscience and Magic

Magic tricks have entertained people for centuries, if not millenia. They startle and surprise the audience because the trick generally accomplishes something that appears to be impossible – a ball disappears when tossed in the air, a tiger materializes in an empty cage, and so on. Most magic tricks exploit limitations in human perception: when we are watching the magician’s right hand, we think we know what his left hand is doing but more than likely our brains are simply filling in the blanks for us. Surprisingly, until recently scientists have largely ignored the insights into perception and cognition offered by magic. It turns out that understanding why magic tricks work may help both neuroscientists and even marketers. […]

By |August 3rd, 2008|