The science of curiosity: why we keep asking “why”

Children have an incredibly inquisitive mind. “Why?” they keep asking. They explore new things for no other reason except that they just want to know. Researchers tried to figure out how often kids ask questions. Turns out, a lot: on average, children ask 107 questions per hour! But it seems that as adults we tend … Read More

Thinking Beyond the Brain: Why Neuroplasticity is Overhyped

Lists of exercises to rewire your brain, books about the “plastic” brain… Neuroplasticity has been touted as a magical capability anyone can harness for success. As with many neuroscience-based concepts that made it into mainstream media, the hype starts from a fact: it is true that the adult brain is not hard-wired with fixed neuronal … Read More

The creative brain: three ways to cultivate your creative thinking

Creativity is everywhere around us — in the random colors of an artist’s painting, the verses of profound poetry, or an inspiring sculpture crafted from muddy clay. However, being creative is not just related to the arts, and artists are not the only custodians of creativity. Solving challenging problems, coming up with new technology, finding … Read More

Nootropics, adaptogens, brain foods… What the heck is going on?

In a world where cognitive performance is considered a clear advantage to succeed—whether as a student or a busy professional—it’s not surprising the idea of popping a pill to enhance your brainpower is appealing to many. And marketers have noticed: the market for cognitive enhancers is a multi-billion dollar industry. Between drinks supplemented with “adaptogenic … Read More

Brain-training games are BS

“Brain Age: Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day!” claims the fifteen-year old Nintendo brain-training app, also known as Dr. Kawashima’s Brain Training. The app consists of mini-games supposedly designed to stimulate various parts of the brain and help combat normal aging effects on the brain. The latest version was released early 2020 in Europe … Read More

Somewhere over the brainbow: a beautiful neuroimaging technique

In the late 1800s, researchers discovered a technique to stain neurons black. Called the Golgi’s method after its inventor Camillo Golgi, an Italian physician and scientist, it allowed us to discover a number of new facts about the organisation of the nervous system, and gave rise to the neuron doctrine—the concept that the nervous system … Read More