Even as the number of hours in the day remains fixed, the number of decisions we must make grows. Organic versus non? Public versus private? Paper versus digital? Modern adults must navigate real and virtual worlds, and if they have children, they need to keep an eye on their increasingly complicated worlds as well. Indeed, there is now a well-established body of science showing that there are only so many decisions you can make in a day before all your choices become bad ones. Decision-making doesn’t just feel exhausting, it really drains us.

Continue reading "" »

What you notice when you're not trying to notice anything

I've had my head down with some journalism--posts to come. But it's been a busy month for Neanderthals. hobbits, language, and evolution in general. First up: humans seem to have a special knack for noticing animals--they're much better at it than noticing inanimate objects, like cars, for example. Second, researchers show that we are quicker to detect fear in someone else's face than we are to see their smile.