David Robson

Science writer and editor

I am an award-winning writer and editor, who specialises in writing in-depth articles probing the extremes of the human mind, body and behaviour. My subjects have included the limits of intelligence, the true stories of 'real-life' vampires, and our burgeoning understanding of the ways that culture shapes your psychology. I am currently writing The Intelligence Trap for Hodder and Stoughton (UK)/WW Norton (USA).

I hope you enjoy my clippings. If you would like to get in touch, please email d_a_robson "at" hotmail.com.

UK

Portfolio

Neuroscience and psychology

BBC Future

The age you feel means more than your actual birthdate

Imagine, for a moment, that you had no birth certificate and your age was simply based on the way you feel inside. How old would you say you are? Like your height or shoe size,...

BBC Future

An effortless way to improve your memory

When trying to memorise new material, it's easy to assume that the more work you put in, the better you will perform. Yet taking the occasional down time - to do literally...

BBC Future

Why athletes need a 'quiet eye'

If anyone knows how to grab a victory from the jaws of defeat, it's Serena Williams. Just consider her semi-final against Kim Clijsters at the 2003 Australian Open. At 5-2 down...

Bbc

The blessing and curse of the people who never forget

For most of us, memory is a kind of scrapbook, a mess of blurred and faded snapshots of our lives. As much as we would like to cling on to our past, even the most poignant...

Bbc

Our IQs have never been higher - but it hasn't made us smart

James Flynn is worried about leaving the world to millennials. As a professor at the University of Otago in New Zealand, he regularly meets bright students with enormous...

Bbc

The tragic fate of the people who stop sleeping

Silvano was on a cruise ship when the family curse struck. An elegant 53-year-old with striking red hair who enjoyed wearing a tuxedo at every possible occasion, he tried to...

Bbc

The curse of the people who can't stop making puns

Derek's wife had put up with more than most people could stand before she finally decided to call the doctor. Almost every night, her husband would wake her up from sleep to...

Bbc

Why are people so incredibly gullible?

If you ever need proof of human gullibility, cast your mind back to the attack of the flesh-eating bananas . In January 2000, a series of chain emails began reporting that...

Bbc

Four ways that other people warp your memory

When we think of our memories, it's natural to imagine a kind of personal library, a bit like Sherlock Holmes's memory palace, where we have stored the most precious events of...

Bbc

The surprising downsides of being clever

If ignorance is bliss, does a high IQ equal misery? Popular opinion would have it so. We tend to think of geniuses as being plagued by existential angst, frustration, and...

Bbc

This is how it feels to learn your memories are fiction

A few months after his brain surgery, Matthew returned to work as a computer programmer. He knew it was going to be a challenge - he had to explain to his boss that he was...

BBC Future

The women with superhuman vision

Concetta Antico has a rare mutation that lets her see "impossible" colours. And her artwork means we can now get a glimpse of her world

Bbc

A blueprint of the emerging mind

The small room feels a little like a spaceship cockpit. In front of me, a group of scientists are sitting in front of a series of monitors, deep in concentration as they...

Bbc

How to learn 30 languages

Out on a sunny Berlin balcony, Tim Keeley and Daniel Krasa are firing words like bullets at each other. First German, then Hindi, Nepali, Polish, Croatian, Mandarin and Thai -...

BBC

The man who has never felt an emotion

Caleb is telling me about the birth of his son, now eight months old. "You know you hear parents say that the first time they looked at their kid, they were overcome with that...

Bbc

'My dentist saved my tooth, but wiped my memory'

William's internal clock is eternally jammed at 13:40 on 14 March 2005 - right in the middle of a dentist appointment. A member of the British Armed Forces, he had returned to...

Bbc

What Peter Pan teaches us about memory and consciousness

A couple of years ago, the neuropsychologist Rosalind Ridley was browsing through a friend's bookshelf when she came across JM Barrie's original Peter Pan stories.

Anthropology

BBC Future

The beautiful languages of the people who talk like birds

If you are ever lucky enough to visit the foothills of the Himalayas, you may hear a remarkable duet ringing through the forest. To the untrained ear, it might sound like...