Synopsis- How Modern Life Is Changing Our IQs and Problem-solving Skills

Our brains have been getting smarter in response to modern life, but a surprising new study suggests the trend may have peaked. So how can you maximise your thinking?

Can you solve this problem? You have a wolf, a goat and a cabbage, and you need to get all three across a river in one piece. You have a boat, but it’s so small that it can fit only you and one of the items, and you can’t leave the wolf and the goat or the goat and the cabbage alone together. How do you get them all across?

This classic logic puzzle is at least a thousand years old. It is attributed to Alcuin of York, a medieval poet and scholar who died in 804, though it probably circulated in oral form before then. There’s another version with a fox, a goose and a bag of beans, and a related tale about three lascivious (but jealous) husbands and their wives who must also be ferried across a river without any hanky-panky on the boat or the shore.

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