A counterpoint for all you Apple-haters out there: a new study by researchers at Duke University found that "even the briefest exposure to the Apple logo may make you behave more creatively." How did they measure that? By having the subjects list "all of the uses for a brick that they could imagine beyond building a wall." That's science for you! If only gazing at the Apple logo could help me think of a good joke for this post. The actual scientific findings:

The team conducted an experiment in which 341 university students completed what they believed was a visual acuity task, during which either the Apple or IBM logo was flashed so quickly that they were unaware they had been exposed to the brand logo. The participants then completed a task designed to evaluate how creative they were, listing all of the uses for a brick that they could imagine beyond building a wall.

People who were exposed to the Apple logo generated significantly more unusual uses for the brick compared with those who were primed with the IBM logo, the researchers said. In addition, the unusual uses the Apple-primed participants generated were rated as more creative by independent judges.

"This is the first clear evidence that subliminal brand exposures can cause people to act in very specific ways," said Gráinne Fitzsimons. "We've performed tests where we've offered people $100 to tell us what logo was being flashed on screen, and none of them could do it. But even this imperceptible exposure is enough to spark changes in behavior."

[Science Daily via Neatorama]