Cute Baby Animal Pictures Increase Productivity


cute baby cat duck baby animal

A study from Hiroshima University has found that viewing pictures of baby animals throughout the day increases efficiency, productivity, and accuracy while at work.

Hiroshi Nittono asked 48 female and male students to answer questions before and after viewing a particular set of pictures.  They either viewed baby animals, adult animals, or delicious food.  The group that viewed baby animals before answering the questions did much better.  They were able to focus more clearly and felt happier and more at ease.

According to the study:

This is interpreted as the result of a narrowed attentional focus induced by the cuteness-triggered positive emotion that is associated with approach motivation and the tendency toward systematic processing. For future applications, cute objects may be used as an emotion elicitor to induce careful behavioral tendencies in specific situations, such as driving and office work.

Next time you plan on going for a drive around the block, do us all a favor and look at a baby penguin first, will ya!?




Fooling People into Passionate Belief

What you believe in may not be as strong of a belief as you might have thought. Researchers have found that people can be tricked into believing the opposite of what they claim to believe  and will even create well supported arguments in opposition of their initial beliefs.

People were asked to answer questions regarding their opinion on moral issues using a clipboard with two sheets of paper.  The first sheet of paper secretly contained two statements glued on top of each other.  When the unsuspected victim of adhesive magic flipped the page to fill out the second sheet, a strong adhesive on the back of the clipboard removed the first statement, revealing a second, identical looking statement holding the opposite stance.

After flipping the page back over they were asked to read the statements aloud and discuss why they answered the way they did.  Reserachers found that:

“About half of the participants did not detect the changes, and 69% accepted at least one of the altered statements. People were even willing to argue in favour of the reversed statements: A full 53% of participants argued unequivocally for the opposite of their original attitude in at least one of the manipulated statements”

More than half the people changed their mind and even argued for the opposite stance they had just completely disagreed with moments before.

Researchers state that this shows how inaccurate questionnaires actually are. It also reveals how incredibly complex our opinions and beliefs actually are, and how easily we can be swayed one way or another.

The conclusion this study brought me to personally is that 53% of people have absolutely no clue what they are talking about when they tell you their opinion.  But we all knew that, didn’t we?

The TSA’s Totalitarian Reign

A woman recently documented her experience with a few TSA officers in which she was reprimanded and not allowed on her flight due to her attitude.  Apparently, she drank her water instead of letting the TSA test it, which you would think would validate that the water was A-ok and not a deadly chemical or bomb additive, but no.

I know not every person that works for the TSA is an uneducated circus clown on a power trip, but let’s be honest, most are.  I have heard of and experienced some downright silly behavior by the TSA, but this one takes the whole bakery.

She was kicked off her flight.  When she asks the TSA officer if they think she is actually a threat they say “no, no, but your attitude…”

She asks, “so let me get this straight, this is retaliatory for my attitude, this is not making the airways safer, this is retaliatory,” to which the TSA officer responds, “pretty much yes.”

Here’s the kicker.  When she asks, “is this legal?”  The TSA clown confidently responds “yes it is.”  And there you have it.  The very definition of a power trip superfluous to the safety of people these officials are supposed to be serving and protecting.  Sound familiar?

I guess it could be worse.  Did you hear about the elderly woman who was forced to take her adult diaper off to complete a body search?  No, that’s not the set up of a punch line.  

The woman notes:

“The TSA detains people or removes them from flights every day for non-security, punitive reasons. Passengers have missed their flights because they didn’t want their breast milk screened in the x-ray detector, because they were carrying a cupcake, because they were wearing a shirt with a satirical logo, because they had a purse with a gun emblem on it, the list goes on. When this happens, passengers have no recourse. Complaints to the TSA result in the TSA denying there was any wrong doing, and the offending officer goes unpunished. Passengers should have rights, and TSA agents should know that there are consequences for intimidation and bullying.”

Here are a few links she provides if you’re interested in giving the TSA a little taste of their own behavior.