Audio cues can not only help us to recognize objects more quickly but can even alter our visual perception. That is, pair birdsong with a bird and we see a bird—but replace that birdsong with a squirrel’s chatter, and we’re not quite so sure what we’re looking at.
Irene Pepperberg pioneered the study of bird cognition back in the 70s and still studies the cognitive and communicative abilities of grey parrots. In this conversation with APS’s Ludmila Nunes, she speaks about research on parrots’ cognitive abilities, their conservation and preservation in the wild, and much more.
Evidence has long shown that humans are terrible at multitasking. People are prone to make more mistakes when they’re switching between different tasks, say answering emails and listening to a conference call, than when they