Posts

October 22, 2014

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5:38 PM | Psychologist and neuroscientist Sarah Brosnan - ScienceLives Do...
Psychologist and neuroscientist Sarah Brosnan - ScienceLives Do non-human primates like chimpanzees and capuchin monkeys respond to inequity or unfairness the way humans do? Georgia State psychologist and neuroscientist, Sarah Brosnan is interested in finding out. Brosnan studies the behavior of primates to better understand how they make decisions and cooperate with one another. By: National Science Foundation.
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3:21 PM | Are All Labrador Retrievers the Same?
Or do show dogs and field dogs vary in temperament?Photo: c.byatt-norman / ShutterstockIt’s often said there are personality differences between Labrador Retrievers bred to show (conformation dogs) and those bred to work (field dogs). And chocolate labs have a reputation for being different than black and yellow labs. Is it true? New research by Sarah Lofgren et al (Royal (Dick) Veterinary School, University of Edinburgh) investigates.Although many Labrador Retrievers are family pets, […]

Lofgren, S., Wiener, P., Blott, S., Sanchez-Molano, E., Woolliams, J., Clements, D. & Haskell, M. (2014). Management and personality in Labrador Retriever dogs, Applied Animal Behaviour Science, 156 44-53. DOI: 10.1016/j.applanim.2014.04.006

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8:26 AM | Autism, parental concerns and socioeconomic status
I'd like to think that there are some rather important messages to be taken from the paper by Xiang Sun and colleagues [1] on level of parental concern, socioeconomic status (SES) and risk of autism. Not only did the authors conclude that: "a higher SES was not associated with the risk of having ASC [autism spectrum conditions]" they also found that: "No child met ASC criteria where parents expressed no concerns".Do you prefer "fashion victim" or "ensembly challenged"?SES - including […]

Sun, X., Allison, C., Auyeung, B., Baron-Cohen, S. & Brayne, C. (2014). Parental concerns, socioeconomic status, and the risk of autism spectrum conditions in a population-based study, Research in Developmental Disabilities, 35 (12) 3678-3688. DOI: 10.1016/j.ridd.2014.07.037

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5:14 AM | Ebola: Coping with Fear and Uncertainty
Something very different happens to us when we face an epidemic as opposed to a natural disaster. When a natural disaster hits, there is anxiety, and traumatic loss but such events have a clear beginning and end. Natural disasters are devastating but there are few unknowns. With the collective loss, there is often collective care […]
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1:42 AM | Violent Immersion: How 3-D Gaming Affects Player Emotions
Playing violent video games in 3-D makes everything seem more real –  and in a new study researchers found that people who played violent video games in 3-D showed more evidence of anger afterward than people who played games on 2-D systems.  That may have troubling consequences for young players, according to an upcoming paper in Psychology of Popular Media Culture.read more

October 21, 2014

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11:00 PM | Perception Of Hatred Fuels Conflicts Between Democrats And Republicans
There are some things that Republicans and Democrats share in common with Palestinians and Israelis and lots of other groups where human conflict seems intractable. A new sociology paper in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences says that seemingly unsolvable political and ethnic conflicts are fueled by asymmetrical perceptions of opponents' motivations, and that these tensions can be relieved by providing financial incentives to better understand what drives an adversary […]
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9:39 PM | Urbanites Prefer Manly Men, Feminine Women
Preference for ultra-masculine men and ultra-feminine women is an urban habit, a new study suggests. Continue reading →
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8:00 PM | Need more sleep, or just a placebo?
It’s late. Really late. And you need to be up early. You’re tossing and turning. The later is gets the more stressed you feel. How are you going to get through the next day so sleep deprived? What if I told you all you need is to believe you got enough sleep?
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7:30 PM | To Reduce Drug-Related Harm, It's Time To Be Honest About The Pleasure
Getting high on own supply. Dance by ShutterstockBy Adam Winstock, King's College LondonDespite the language we use about drugs, many people don’t see themselves as “drug users” but as rational adults who aren’t on a mission to seek moral disintegration and cause themselves harm. People who use drugs are just people who happen to use drugs (they might also do yoga, go the cinema, get degrees, litter the streets or be into base-jumping) – normal people who care […]
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3:00 PM | How To Force People To Do Anything (And Have Them Thank You For it)
Does someone in your life not want to do something? Do you not care, even the slightest bit, about their wishes? Here's how to force them to complete a task they don't care about, and even feel superior while you're doing it.Read more...
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1:56 PM | The Optimism Of Depressed People
Even depressed people are essentially optimistic - they believe that tomorrow will be better, even though that belief probably won't lead to better outcomes. That is true optimism. A paper in Clinical Psychological Science says that middle-aged adults who had a history of depression evaluated their past and current lives in more negative terms than adults without depression - but the future was just as rosy in both groups.read more
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12:00 AM | Seasonal Affective Disorder - Depression Linked To Serotonin
Some people suffer from 'winter blues' while others have no issue. Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) affects people as daylight levels drop in autumn. At Northern European latitudes (for example all of Scandinavia, Glasgow and Moscow) around 1 person in 6 suffers from SAD.  Psychologists have searched for reasons why. A small longitudinal study concluded that people with Seasonal Affective Disorder show significant seasonal differences in the way they regulate the neurotransmitter […]

October 20, 2014

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10:33 PM | 6 Ways Your Body Can Play Tricks On Your Mind New research...
6 Ways Your Body Can Play Tricks On Your Mind New research shows that your body language does much more than just change the way other people see you — it can even change how you see yourself. Psychologists describe this phenomenon as “embodied cognition.” HuffPost Science’s Jacqueline Howard shares six scientific findings that shed light on how you can use your own body to your benefit. By: Talk Nerdy To Me.
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7:16 PM | Michio Kaku on the Science of Dreams Michio Kaku describes how...
Michio Kaku on the Science of Dreams Michio Kaku describes how our prefrontal cortex disengages as we dream, thus suppressing the fact-checking component of our consciousness. Dr. Kaku’s latest book is The Future of the Mind: The Scientific Quest to Understand, Enhance, and Empower the Mind (http://goo.gl/G06jvb). Read more at BigThink.com: http://goo.gl/odYmq4 By: Big Think.
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7:05 PM | The Benefits of Being Scared
Being scared isn’t always a negative. You can be scared in many different ways. There is the “scary movie” kind of scared, where you don’t know what’s going to pop out on the screen. There’s the jumping out of a plane kind of scared, where you fear real death and your adrenaline is pumping loudly. […]
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6:27 PM | Fear of Holes - Science on the Web №67 Sure there’s a...
Fear of Holes - Science on the Web №67 Sure there’s a fear of spiders or even clowns. But holes? Find out why, for some people, staring into a hole is like falling through an infinite portal. By: How Stuff Works.
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4:49 PM | The Secrets of Sleep - A Week in Science We delve into the...
The Secrets of Sleep - A Week in Science We delve into the secrets of sleep and find out why some people are night owls and others early risers. By: RiAus.
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3:00 PM | The Garcia Effect Nitpicks A Clockwork Orange So You Don't Have To
The most famous scene in the film A Clockwork Orange is the one in which Alex DeLarge goes through a brutal conditioning process to give him an aversion to violence. But aversion conditioning is not as simple as that, and the Garcia Effect shows why.Read more...
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2:20 PM | Moral Time: Does Our Internal Clock Influence Moral Judgments?
Does morality depend on the time of the day? The study "The Morning Morality Effect: The Influence of Time of Day on Unethical Behavior" published in October of 2013 by Maryam Kouchaki and Isaac Smith suggested that people are more honest in the mornings, and that their ability to resist the temptation of lying and cheating wears off as the day progresses. In a series of experiments, Kouchaki and Smith found that moral awareness and self-control in their study subjects decreased... Read […]
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2:20 PM | Moral Time: Does Our Internal Clock Influence Moral Judgments?
Does morality depend on the time of the day? The study "The Morning Morality Effect: The Influence of Time of Day on Unethical Behavior" published in October of 2013 by Maryam Kouchaki and Isaac Smith suggested that people are more honest in the mornings, and that their ability to resist the temptation of lying and cheating wears off as the day progresses. In a series of experiments, Kouchaki and Smith found that moral awareness and self-control in their study subjects decreased... Read […]

Gunia BC, Barnes CM & Sah S (2014). The Morality of Larks and Owls: Unethical Behavior Depends on Chronotype as Well as Time of Day., Psychological science, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25287664

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2:20 PM | Moral Time: Does Our Internal Clock Influence Moral Judgments?
Does morality depend on the time of the day? The study "The Morning Morality Effect: The Influence of Time of Day on Unethical Behavior" published in October of 2013 by Maryam Kouchaki and Isaac Smith suggested that people are more honest in the mornings, and that their ability to resist the temptation of lying and cheating wears off as the day progresses. In a series of experiments, Kouchaki and Smith found that moral awareness and self-control in their study subjects decreased... Read […]

Gunia BC, Barnes CM & Sah S (2014). The Morality of Larks and Owls: Unethical Behavior Depends on Chronotype as Well as Time of Day., Psychological science, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25287664

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1:20 PM | This Experiment Shows We're Low On Good Samaritans And High On Irony
How likely are you to stop and help a stranger? Do you think that would change if the ethos you subscribe to is all about helping others? Here's an experiment that tested that very idea.Read more...
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8:36 AM | Reasons for visiting ER by those with autism
ER - Emergency Room - or as we call it here in Blighty Accident & Emergency (A & E), is never a particularly desirable place to visit given the emphasis on illness or injury of yourself or loved one. That being said, staff there do a sterling job sometimes under very stressful circumstances, responding to all-manner of complaints, some of which are life-threatening.The paper by Dorothea Iannuzzi and colleagues [1] sought to identify some of the medical reasons why ER […]

Iannuzzi DA, Cheng ER, Broder-Fingert S & Bauman ML (2014). Brief Report: Emergency Department Utilization by Individuals with Autism., Journal of autism and developmental disorders, PMID: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/25261249

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5:00 AM | Halloween special: the science of scary apparitions podcast
Why are we obsessed with ghosts, werewolves, witches and voices from the other side? Psychologist Chris French and vampire slayer Deborah Hyde explain Continue reading...
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12:00 AM | Science Book a Day Interviews Tony Angell and John Marzluff
Special thanks to Tony Angell and John Marzluff for answering 5 questions about their recently featured book – Gifts of the Crow: How Perception, Emotion, and Thought Allow Smart Birds to Behave Like Humans Author, illustrator and […]

October 19, 2014

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10:35 PM | It Helps to Focus on the Positive Stuff
Things are OK as they are. That’s the one fact I’ve been struggling with recently. I have this image in my mind as to how I want things to be. I want to make lots of money, I want a house in the mountains, I want to get married. All of this I worry about […]
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9:43 PM | The Negative Side of Positive Thinking by braincraft: Sometimes...
The Negative Side of Positive Thinking by braincraft: Sometimes bad things happen to good feedback. Because some self-help isn’t all that helpful.
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3:26 PM | Not The Christian Thing To Do: Reminding People Of Religious Belief Reduces Hostility
Muslim terrorists and the Klu Klux Klan share one thing in common; they claim to be religious even though the ideas they promote (and in the case of the former, the actions they take) are not very nice. The fringes get all of the attention but most religious people are not clinically insane or promoting the deaths of others in order to secure their own place in Heaven, and if you remind them of their religious principles, their attitude toward negative events change, according to a paper […]
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3:00 PM | Dysprosody: When You Can't Stress Words or You Can't Stress Words
What's the difference between telling people they shouldn't do something and telling them they shouldn't do something? If you have dysprosody, nothing. People with dysprosody can't control the stresses in their speech, and it makes a world of difference.Read more...

October 18, 2014

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11:25 PM | What Drives a Person to Suicide?
Each of us has swings in our mood or has highs and lows in our emotional feelings. If these swings are within a certain normal range, we remain self-governed and functional. But when they become extreme, they can lead us into the poles of mania and depression. In some cases if the manias become extremely […]
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