Feeds

Outside-the-box thinking literally can't be done inside a box, say profs

Trick cyclists in fridge-carton tomfoolishness

Security for virtualized datacentres

Time-rich trick cyclists in Singapore and America have determined to their own satisfaction that it is actually much more difficult to think outside the box if you are, in reality, inside a large box at the time.

mime_in_box

Dumb...and in a box
Photo credit: Lighthelper.

They determined this by means of a series of experiments in which they measured the creative-thinking abilities of a group of subjects, some of whom carried out the tests while seated "inside a five-by-five-foot cardboard box" similar to an empty refrigerator carton, while others were outside the box.

According to Angela Leung of Singapore Management University and her colleagues, the people outside the box scored significantly better on "a test widely used to test creativity".

"We may consider getting away from Dilbert's cubicles and creating open office spaces to free up our minds," says Leung.

The psychologists also tested other "metaphors of creative thinking" found in everyday use. According to a recent statement issued by the US Association for Psychological Science:

In another experiment, some participants were asked to join the halves of cut-up coasters before taking a test — a physical representation of "putting two and two together." People who acted out the metaphor displayed more convergent thinking, a component of creativity that requires bringing together many possible answers to settle on one that will work. Other experiments found that walking freely generated more original ideas than walking in a set line; another found truth in "on the [one] hand; on the other hand."

Presumably still other ploys involved flagpoles, toasters, spitballs, attempts to saddle up babies and soar into the skies astride them etc.

Leung and her colleagues' tomfoolery is to be published in the journal Psychological Science ("the highest ranked empirical journal in psychology"). Or you can read it here if you really want to. ®

Internet Security Threat Report 2014

More from The Register

next story
Facebook pays INFINITELY MORE UK corp tax than in 2012
Thanks for the £3k, Zuck. Doh! you're IN CREDIT. Guess not
Big Content outs piracy hotbeds: São Paulo, Beijing ... TORONTO?
MPAA calls Canadians a bunch of bootlegging movie thieves
Google Glassholes are UNDATEABLE – HP exec
You need an emotional connection, says touchy-feely MD... We can do that
Just don't blame Bono! Apple iTunes music sales PLUMMET
Cupertino revenue hit by cheapo downloads, says report
US court SHUTS DOWN 'scammers posing as Microsoft, Facebook support staff'
Netizens allegedly duped into paying for bogus tech advice
Feds seek potential 'second Snowden' gov doc leaker – report
Hang on, Ed wasn't here when we compiled THIS document
Verizon bankrolls tech news site, bans tech's biggest stories
No agenda here. Just don't ever mention Net neutrality or spying, ok?
prev story

Whitepapers

Why and how to choose the right cloud vendor
The benefits of cloud-based storage in your processes. Eliminate onsite, disk-based backup and archiving in favor of cloud-based data protection.
Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
Simplify SSL certificate management across the enterprise
Simple steps to take control of SSL across the enterprise, and recommendations for a management platform for full visibility and single-point of control for these Certificates.