David Shenk

David Shenk is a writer on genetics, talent and intelligence. He is the author of Data Smog, The Forgetting, and most recently, The Genius In All of Us. More

David Shenk is the author of six books, including Data Smog ("indispensable"—The New York Times), The Immortal Game ("superb"—The Wall Street Journal), and the bestselling The Forgetting ("a remarkable addition to the literature of the science of the mind."—The Los Angeles Times ). He has contributed to National Geographic, Slate, The New York Times, Gourmet, Harper's, The New Yorker, The American Scholar, and National Public Radio. Shenk's work inspired the Emmy-award winning PBS documentary The Forgetting and was featured in the Oscar-nominated feature Away From Her. His latest book, The Genius In All Of Us, was published in March 2010. Shenk has advised the President's Council on Bioethics and is a popular speaker. Click here to follow him on Twitter.

  • Does Homework Work?

    School's back, and so is Big Homework. Here's what my 7th grade daughter has to do tonight:1 Math review sheet, 1 Science essay, French vocab for…

  • Brain Poison (How To Respond?)

    Accusing Obama of trying to indoctrinate school children? That is rich. The Obama haters are on a war footing, and their target is the American mind.…

  • Obama, Kennedy, and the Neurology of Reason

    Listening to President Obama's elegant eulogy for Ted Kennedy on Saturday, I was struck by the differences between the two great orators, and also by…

  • The Wisdom of One

    By now, we've all heard much about the elegance and dynamism of bottom-up systems: how the "wisdom of crowds" creates a powerful collective…

  • A Brave New World in China?

    China has some outstanding scientists. Unfortunately, none of them seem to work at the Shanghai Biochip Corporation, which has organized a summer…

  • Why You Don't Believe Me Yet (Here Comes the Cavalry)

    I appreciate the intense reactions to this blog so far, and respect the lingering skepticism. (Some of the nastiness I could do without, but it…

  • Every Hour Leading Up to 10,000 (and Every Hour After That)

    In providing an overview for this new blog's approach, I've so far touched on genetics and intelligence; now it's onto studies of talent and…

  • Should kids know their own IQs?

    It is a universal and unnerving question for any parent: Should you tell your child his or her IQ score?But I suggest that we are all asking the…

  • The Truth About IQ

    "[Some] assert than an individual's intelligence is a fixed quantity which cannot be increased. We must protest and react against this brutal…

  • How Genes Really Work

    In my first post, I listed three separate chunks of science that, when seen together, suggest a radical new understanding of talent and intelligence…

  • The End of Giftedness

    Thanks to The Atlantic for including me in such a distinguished group. Here's what I'll be writing about in this blog: Genes don't issue fixed…


Why Did I Study Physics?

Using hand-drawn cartoons to explain an academic passion


What If Emoji Lived Among Us?

A whimsical ad imagines what life would be like if emoji were real.


Living Alone on a Sailboat

"If you think I'm a dirtbag, then you don't understand the lifestyle."


How Is Social Media Changing Journalism?

How new platforms are transforming radio, TV, print, and digital


The Place Where Silent Movies Sing

How an antique, wind-powered pipe organ brings films to life


The Future of Iced Coffee

Are artisan businesses like Blue Bottle doomed to fail when they go mainstream?



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