March 8th, 2014| Topic: RaMbLeS | 0


They say:


It’s pretty hard to be creative in a quiet space. And a loud workplace can be frustrating and distracting. But, the mix of calm and commotion in an environment like a coffee house is proven to be just what you need to get those creative juices flowing.”

“They” are Coffitivity, a group of software developers. And there is an app for this. For iOS and Android. Yup, it’s called Coffitivity. Rated 4+ in the Mac App Store.

So …

Our team has delivered the vibe of a coffee shop right to your desktop, which means when your workspace just isn’t quite cutting it, we’ve got you covered. Coffitivity. Enough noise to work.”

Amazing. The background noise of a Starbucks (or whatever purveying house of café tickles your fancy). I’m listening to it right now. And guess what? I’m getting creative!

It works!

Dave would have gotten this years ago (if it had been around). This was a fellow grad student (or “post-grad student” as they say on the other side of the Atlantic) in Aberdeen, who could get work done on his dissertation (or “thesis,” as they say out there) only in Starbucks. So early morning he’d leave home with his laptop and books and other paraphernalia befitting one working on a doctorate. Like iPhone, headphones, Starbucks gift card, mints, etc.

Think of the money he’d have saved with Coffitivity.

[Hey, what’s that I just heard? Sounds like someone dropped a cup! What a mess. But who cares. I ain’t there.]

It appears that research published in The Journal of Consumer Research by social scientists at Sauder School of Business, University of British Columbia, substantiates the claim of the good folks at Coffitivity. Their guinea pigs in this “Restaurant Experience Study” were sixty-five undergraduate students from the University of British Columbia.

Here’s the abstract:

This paper examines how ambient noise, an important environmental variable, can affect creativity. Results from five experiments demonstrate that a moderate (70 dB) versus low (50 dB) level of ambient noise enhances performance on creative tasks and increases the buying likelihood of innovative products.”

[Uh-oh! The noise in a coffee-shop makes you want to buy? I’m glad I’m doing this at home.]

Apparently, modest background noise, according to the scientists, creates enough of a distraction to encourage people to think more imaginatively. Up to a certain point!

It looks like an inverted-U shaped curve explains the relationship between noise and creativity. To a certain level (up to 70dB) noise increases your creativity; more than that diminishes it.

The researchers’ recommendation? The next time you’re stumped on a creative challenge, head to a bustling coffee shop, not the library.

[I]nstead of burying oneself in a quiet room trying to figure out a solution, walking out of one’s comfort zone and getting into a relatively noisy environment may trigger the brain to think abstractly, and thus generate creative ideas.”

But carry a decibel meter to Starbucks, if you plan to go there and be creative.

[Yup, there’s an app for that as well. Nope, not by the enterprising folks at Coffitivity.]

You know, there’s one sound that the Bible recommends you listen to. Carefully.

Not like this …

“Behold, their ears are closed And they cannot listen.
Behold, the word of the LORD has become a reproach to them;
They have no delight in it.”
Jeremiah 6:10

But like this …

“Obey My voice, and I will be your God, and you will be My people;
and you will walk in all the way which I command you,
that it may be well with you.”
Jeremiah 7:23

Hear, hear!

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