Video games and the paradox of failure

The paradox of failure explains why even a healthy rage-quit won't keep a good gamer down.

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  • When we fail at video games, we discover an inadequacy (however small) in ourselves — yet a growing number of people continue to seek out these digital challenges.
  • Game designer Jesper Juul calls this the paradox of failure and argues it offers a unique space for personal growth.
  • By using the paradox of failure as a tool, video games could teach us to develop open mindsets and evade the pitfalls of learned helplessness.
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How hands-on learning fires up your brain

To strengthen your mind, work with your hands, says former astronaut Leland Melvin.

  • Learning is a mental and physical pursuit, says retired astronaut Leland Melvin.
  • Recalling his childhood, Melvin explains how working with his dad to turn a $500 bread truck into a family RV camper ultimately made him a better astronaut, able to maneuver the $2-billion dollar Columbus Laboratory out of the payload bay of a shuttle and attach it to the International Space Station.
  • Experiential learning — like hands-on DIY, engineering kits, and Duplo games — wires your brain for problem solving from a young age. It's a leg-up we can all give to the children in our lives.
  • "[W]hen we let [kids] build and create and it's meaningful and it helps them solve a problem, that gets them thinking about how they can be change makers themselves and how they can be scientists and engineers," says Melvin.

There are two kinds of identity politics. One is good. The other, very bad.

Why free thought has died on university campuses.

  • Freedom is speech is being eradicated on college campuses in favor of identity politics and "snowflake" culture.
  • Rather than be open to new ideas, differing opinions that might make students "feel bad" are shut out.
  • This creates a cycle of negativity between not only the colleges and the students but also the very idea of college being a place of higher learning.
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Multitasking actually does boost performance. Wait, what?

A new study re-assesses multitasking.

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  • Multitasking may have some value after all — as a useful illusion
  • A new study shows that simply believing you're multitasking helps performance
  • Try this for yourself and see what happens
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How 'creativity sprints' can get your creative brain going

Need to kick-start your creativity? This technique can really help.

  • The best way to become more creative? Exercise your creativity like you would your body.
  • Set realistic expectations. Nobody is going to become the best immediately and write an amazing novel, or what have you, in a week.
  • Curiosity is the fuel that drives creativity. Pick a big goal and find out every small aspect about it to break it down.
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