Creativity when you're fresh vs. when tired

Some recent studies have noted that people's ability to solve problems depends on the time of day. Of course you've heard that you should get up early and do your biggest, best, and most important things first thing in the morning (a habit I'm already in). But there's some research that runs exactly opposite -- some kinds of problem solving is better when you're fatigued. This is super interesting to me as it combines two trends I'm paying attention to: the science of productivity also the 'cadence' of life's interactions.

I'm really into the rhythms and routines of daily living, both as an observer of the lives we lead and also as a rich resource for design intervention. Daily rhythms can be a powerful place for brands to intersect with life, and for startups to disrupt or just plain eliminate routines that people don't find optimal.

So this research shows that tiredness actually helps creative problem solving (the researchers call this 'insight driven' problems). Tiredness had little to no effect on analytical problem-solving tasks.

Here's the Atlantic's suggested hypothesis to perhaps explain the phenomenon:

The reason might be that solving difficult puzzles often requires overcoming an impasse—which in turn

read more...

Is Apple the Next Hermes?

Unless you live under a gargantuan luddite rock, you already know Apple will launch the Apple Watch on Monday, March 9th. And everybody is handicapping how good it’ll be, how many Apple will sell (projections range from 10-30 million, but some are saying even up to 50 million). There was a rumor last week that I saw at daringfireball.net that Apple would wind up consuming nearly one quarter of the world’s gold supply, in order to make the high end Apple Watch Edition, which of course will come in solid 18k gold.

All of this got me thinking… What if Apple is a lot more than a technology company?  Asked another way, if the ‘internet of things’ gets going, can Apple become much more than a computer and phone company and profitably produce watches, shirts, couches, desks, kitchen appliances, toys and who knows what else? 

What if Apple is the next Hermes?

Hermes was not always a scarf and tie and beautiful $20,000 ‘Birkin’ bag company. Hermes was founded in 1837 by Thierry Hermès. In the middle 1800s, they created high-quality wrought harnesses and bridles for the carriage trade and they ‘branched out’ into horse saddles

read more...