14 Stories

Think Booze Is Your Muse? Scientists Think You're Right

Scientists speculate that alcohol could help us fixate less, move past creative blocks

(Newser) - People who claim to be more creative after a pint may be onto something after all, according to researchers studying the age-old assumption. A team at the University of Graz in Austria reports in the journal Consciousness and Cognition that among the 132 young adults they studied, the ones who... More »

Sarcasm Makes You More Creative

No matter whether you are the deliverer or the recipient, study says

(Newser) - A study has found that sarcasm—which has gotten a bad rap—can actually boost creativity and cognitive functioning in both the user and receiver, Scientific American reports. Researchers assigned volunteers to take part in simulated dialogues that were either sarcastic, sincere, or neutral, then gave them tasks to test... More »

Does Creativity Up Your Risk of Mental Illness?

Iceland researchers say there's a genetic link, other scientists say it's flimsy

(Newser) - The "mad genius" is back in fashion with a new claim that there's a genetic link between creativity and genius, the Guardian reports. A study published in Nature Neuroscience analyzed 86,000 Icelanders to flesh out genetic variations that double one's risk of schizophrenia and more than... More »

Scientists Peak in Their Late 30s

Education may explain phenomenon

(Newser) - Good news for struggling scientists in their mid-30s: Your big breakthrough is probably still to come. So says a new study from the National Bureau of Economics Research, which finds that great scientists and inventors see their biggest moments of genius in their late 30s, the Atlantic reports. Education may... More »

Need to Get Creative? Dim the Lights

Research suggests it helps stimulate clever thinking

(Newser) - If you're working on a project that demands a burst of inspiration, try turning down the lights. So say German researchers who conclude that "darkness increases freedom from constraints, which in turn promotes creativity," reports Pacific Standard , picking up on a study in the Journal of Environmental... More »

Studying Abroad Makes You Creative

Cultural immersion enhances humor, innovation

(Newser) - If you want to be creative, consider studying abroad. Researchers at the University of Florida, Gainesville, found that students who'd studied in Senegal, Spain, or wherever were more creative than those who had stayed home, reports Pacific Standard . Participants were tested on their reactions to unexpected questions—like how... More »

To Spur Creativity, Try a Noisy Café

'Ambient noise' can be helpfully distracting: study

(Newser) - Forget peace and quiet—a little noise can be your friend when it comes to generating ideas, a study finds. Sure, you don't want sirens blaring outside your window, but the "ambient noise" of, say, a hopping coffee shop could actually help you work better. It's distracting,... More »

We Do Mornings All Wrong

Stressful routine hurts our creativity

(Newser) - An alarm clock jolting you awake, a frenetic rush through shower and commute, and maybe a scant few minutes to glance over depressing headlines: Pretty much every part of your morning routine is dooming your chance to do any sort of creative thinking. Recent studies show, for instance, that we... More »

Society Needs More Boredom

It's what allows us to be creative, Scott Adams argues

(Newser) - Thanks to a dizzying array of gadgets, mankind has finally “won the war on boredom”—and that might not be such a good thing, Scott Adams argues in an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal . Boredom, after all, gives our brains time to process things and be creative.... More »

To Boost Memory, Go to Sleep

How shut-eye helps you remember, process more

(Newser) - Popping pills and or toiling away at Sudoku may help boost memory, but according to a slew of recent studies, good old-fashioned sleep may be best: It strengthens long-term memory, decision-making, and creativity. "It turns out we are not like TiVo," says a sleep researcher, which "is... More »

Genius, Madness Linked to Gene

Study links creativity to gene associated with mental illness

(Newser) - The reason why many creative people like Vincent Van Gogh show self-destructive tendencies is in the genes, researchers have discovered. Scientists in a new study found that volunteers identified as the most creative also had the highest levels of a gene variant associated with psychosis and depression, the Daily Telegraph... More »

Love Boosts Creativity, Lust Improves Logic: Study

Tests find that logic puzzles stump the romantic, while the lustful lack creative thinking

(Newser) - The lovestruck enjoy a surge in creative powers while those who are merely randy are sharper logicians, a new study finds. Dutch researchers asked students to imagine either a romantic walk with a loved one or a one-night stand with a casual acquaintance before giving them a set of problems... More »

The Most Creative Minds in Business

(Newser) - Creativity is a tough thing to put your finger on, but Fast Company takes a shot at picking world’s top 100 business innovators. The first five:
  • Jonathan Ive: Apple’s design chief—responsible for the iPhone, iPod, MacBook, and iMac—ushered in an era of “design perfection” that
... More »

How to Free Creative You

Tips for innovation in troubled times

(Newser) - Tough times tend to foster innovation. If your wallet is feeling a pinch, capitalizing on your creativity may be a way to help, says ABC News. Here are some tips on how to get your brain moving:
  • Let your thoughts wander. Allowing your ideas to roam freely can "trigger
... More »

14 Stories