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  • Expression
    2 years ago
    by geoleo
    +47 +1

    The First 'Nigerian Prince' Scam

    In 1966, Stanford University psychologists Jonathan Freeman and Scott Fraser observed an interesting phenomenon in their experiments: someone who has already agreed to a small request—like opening the door for you—would become more, not less, likely to agree to a larger request later on. In one study, they asked 150 housewives in Palo Alto, California, if they would sacrifice two hours of their time: a research team of five or six people would come...

  • Current Event
    2 years ago
    by takai
    +35 +1

    Can a brain scan uncover your morals?

    It’s hard to imagine Steven Northington killing two people. The 43-year-old says he likes to make people laugh, “like a comedian”. He’s a loyal son to his troubled mother and father. He sends his younger sister birthday cards from prison and draws elaborate smiley faces on them. His defense team laughs with affection when they hear his name because he is, they say, “a character”. Between 2003 and 2004, Northington was slinging for a drug ring that flooded his...

  • Analysis
    2 years ago
    by hedman
    +50 +1

    Narcissism Is Increasing. So You’re Not So Special.

    MY teenage son recently informed me that there is an Internet quiz to test oneself for narcissism. His friend had just taken it. “How did it turn out?” I asked. “He says he did great!” my son responded. “He got the maximum score!” When I was a child, no one outside the mental health profession talked about narcissism; people were more concerned with inadequate self-esteem, which at the time was believed to lurk behind nearly every difficulty.

  • Expression
    2 years ago
    by robmonk
    +1 +1

    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 moments can be washed away with time. Ask Nima Veiseh what he was doing for any day in the past 15 years, however, and he will give you the minutiae of the weather, what he was wearing, or even what side of the train he was sitting on his journey to work.

  • Expression
    2 years ago
    by distant
    +7 +1

    How to Survive Solitary Confinement

    With a sigh, Johnny Perez rises from his plastic chair, unfolds his lanky frame and extends his wingspan until the tips of his middle fingers graze the walls. “It was from here to here,” he says. “I know because I used to do this all the time.” Until recently, these measurements—10 feet by 6 feet—fit his entire life.

  • Analysis
    2 years ago
    by grandsalami
    +28 +1

    Why You Keep Signing Your Future Self Up for Stuff You Don’t Actually Want to Do

    The first week of March is approaching, which does not bode well for me. Every month, it seems, I end up punting too many annoying tasks and requests to the first week of the following month, assuming that even though I don’t have time for these things now, surely I will later. March Me can handle it. Sign March Me up. And yet there is, of course, no rational reason to think that March Me will actually be any less busy than Present Me.

  • Analysis
    2 years ago
    by zyery
    +3 +1

    What It’s Like to Have Your Severe Depression Treated With a Hallucinogenic Drug

    Everyone’s depression is different, but Ted, a 40-year-old resident of Portland, Oregon, describes his as a “continuous dark veil — a foul, dark, awful perspective that informs every moment of your whole life.” He’d tried to treat it with antidepressants, therapy, visits to psychiatrists, “the whole nine,” but although the antidepressants kept him functional, they by no means offered relief. He was getting desperate...

  • Expression
    2 years ago
    by canuck
    +29 +1

    How Should You Organize Your Closet? Exactly Like a Computer Organizes Its Memory

    You have a problem. Your closet is overflowing, spilling shoes, shirts, and underwear onto the floor. You think, “It’s time to get organized.” Now you have two problems. Specifically, you first need to decide what to keep, and second, how to arrange it. Fortunately, there is a small industry of people who think about these twin problems for a living, and they are more than happy to offer their advice.

  • Analysis
    2 years ago
    by TNY
    +2 +1

    Half Your Brain Stands Guard When Sleeping In A New Place

    When you sleep in unfamiliar surroundings, only half your brain is getting a good night's rest. "The left side seems to be more awake than the right side," says Yuka Sasaki, an associate professor of cognitive, linguistic and psychological sciences at Brown University. The finding, reported Thursday in the journal Current Biology, helps explain why people tend to feel tired after sleeping in a new place.

  • Analysis
    2 years ago
    by drunkenninja
    +21 +1

    Our brain uses statistics to calculate confidence, make decisions

    The brain produces feelings of confidence that inform decisions the same way statistics pulls patterns out of noisy data. This feeling of confidence is central to decision making, and, despite ample evidence of human fallibility, the subjective feeling relies on objective calculations.

  • Analysis
    2 years ago
    by mariogi
    +43 +1

    Dreaming brain rhythms lock in memories

    Disrupting brain activity in sleeping mice, specifically during the rapid eye movement (REM) phase, can stop the animals remembering things they learned that day, a study suggests. It is the clearest evidence to date that REM sleep is critical for memory. By switching off certain brain cells, the researchers silenced a particular, rhythmic type of brain function - without waking the mice. If they did this during REM sleep, the mice failed subsequent memory tests.

  • Analysis
    2 years ago
    by aj0690
    +33 +1

    United States of Paranoia: They See Gangs of Stalkers

    Nobody believed him. His family told him to get help. But Timothy Trespas, an out-of-work recording engineer in his early 40s, was sure he was being stalked, and not by just one person, but dozens of them. He would see the operatives, he said, disguised as ordinary people, lurking around his Midtown Manhattan neighborhood. Sometimes they bumped into him and whispered nonsense into his ear, he said. “Now you see how it works,” they would say.

  • Analysis
    2 years ago
    by rhingo
    +35 +1

    Why Does Time Seem to Speed Up with Age?

    James M. Broadway, a postdoctoral researcher in the Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and Brittiney Sandoval, a recent graduate of the same institution, answer.

  • Analysis
    2 years ago
    by cone
    +24 +1

    Invisibilia: Is Your Personality Fixed, Or Can You Change Who You Are?

    This is the story of a prisoner who committed a horrible crime and says he's no longer the same person who did it. It's also the story of why it's so hard for us to believe him. In the early 1960s, a young psychologist at Harvard University was assigned to teach a class on personality. Though Walter Mischel was excited to prove himself as a teacher, there was one small problem: He didn't happen to know very much about personality.

  • Analysis
    2 years ago
    by dianep
    +19 +1

    There’s No Such Thing as Free Will

    For centuries, philosophers and theologians have almost unanimously held that civilization as we know it depends on a widespread belief in free will—and that losing this belief could be calamitous. Our codes of ethics, for example, assume that we can freely choose between right and wrong. In the Christian tradition, this is known as “moral liberty”—the capacity to discern and pursue the good, instead of merely being compelled by appetites and desires.

  • Analysis
    2 years ago
    by grandtheftsoul
    +48 +1

    Would you purge bad memories from your brain if you could?

    Imagine you’re the manager of a café. It stays open late and the neighbourhood has gone quiet by the time you lock the doors. You put the evening’s earnings into a bank bag, tuck that into your backpack, and head home. It’s a short walk through a poorly lit park. And there, next to the pond, you realise you’ve been hearing footsteps behind you. Before you can turn around, a man sprints up and stabs you in the stomach. When you fall to the ground, he kicks you, grabs your backpack, and runs off. Fortunately a bystander calls an ambulance which takes you, bleeding and shaken, to the nearest hospital.

  • Analysis
    2 years ago
    by drunkenninja
    +29 +1

    Enjoyment of trash films linked to high intelligence, study finds

    ‘So bad its good’ is a type of enjoyment that seems specific to film and television. You probably wouldn’t wilfully listen to a terrible album, read a lousy book or go to see thematically redundant art, and yet many of us will sit down and watch the worst movie we can find with glee. For the first time, academics have delved into this phenomenon, with the journal Poetics this week publishing a study entitled: ‘Enjoying trash films: Underlying features, viewing stances, and experiential response dimensions’.

  • Analysis
    2 years ago
    by ckshenn
    +29 +1

    Why Are Babies So Dumb If Humans Are So Smart?

    As a species, humans are incredibly smart. We tell stories, create magnificent art and astounding technology, build cities, and explore space. We haven’t been around nearly as long as many other species, but in many respects we’ve accomplished more than any have before us. We eat them and they don’t eat us. We even run scientific studies on them—and are thinking about re-creating some of those that have gone extinct. But our intelligence comes with a curious caveat: our babies are among the dumbest—or, rather, the most helpless—that exist.

  • Expression
    1 year ago
    by gottlieb
    +17 +1

    Three examples of transcendent knowledge

    Even though I have been talking about transcendent knowledge in most of my blog posts, the characteristics of that category of knowledge, even its qualification of knowledge, have not been properly discussed up to now. I’ll take three examples of transcendent knowledge and try to better define it through their presentation.

  • Analysis
    1 year ago
    by wildcat
    +41 +1

    Sensory dynamics of visual hallucinations in the normal population

    Hallucinations occur in both normal and clinical populations. Due to their unpredictability and complexity, the mechanisms underlying hallucinations remain largely untested. Here we show that visual hallucinations can be induced in the normal population by visual flicker, limited to an annulus that constricts content complexity to simple moving grey blobs, allowing objective mechanistic investigation. Hallucination strength peaked at ~11 Hz flicker and was dependent on cortical processing. critical to test theories of human consciousness and clinical models of hallucination.

  • Current Event
    1 year ago
    by canuck
    +15 +1

    People with Autism Make More Logical Decisions

    Decisions are based on the way choices are framed. This is because people use emotion when making decisions, leading to some options feeling more desirable than others. For example, when given £50, we are more likely to gamble the money if we stand to lose £30 than if we are going to keep £20. Although both options are mathematically equivalent, the thought of losing money evokes a powerful emotional response and we are more likely to gamble to try to avoid losing money.

  • Current Event
    1 year ago
    by dianep
    +28 +1

    Jeff Bezos dismisses idea of a backup plan, says we must protect Earth

    During the last year Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has begun to open up about the scale of his ambitions with the rocket company, Blue Origin, explaining that he envisions millions of people living and working in space. Additionally, Bezos has talked about moving heavy industry off of planet Earth to create a garden paradise on our home planet. In this view Bezos' philosophy differs significantly from the other titan of the new space industry, Elon Musk of SpaceX. Both men agree that reusable spaceflight is essential to lowering the cost of access to space...

  • Expression
    1 year ago
    by junglman
    +16 +1

    The influential Confucian philosopher you’ve never heard of

    A man is hiking in the countryside when he suddenly sees a toddler about to fall into an abandoned well. What will he do? Many people will instinctively run toward the toddler to save him. However, some people will simply panic, freezing in the moment of crisis. A handful of people might start to move toward the child, but then stop, because they realise that the crumbling old well could collapse under their weight. Their initial impulse to save the child competes with their desire for self-preservation.

  • Analysis
    1 year ago
    by zritic
    +44 +1

    Pedophilia: A Disorder, Not a Crime

    THINK back to your first childhood crush. Maybe it was a classmate or a friend next door. Most likely, through school and into adulthood, your affections continued to focus on others in your approximate age group. But imagine if they did not. By some estimates, 1 percent of the male population continues, long after puberty, to find themselves attracted to prepubescent children. These people are living with pedophilia, a sexual attraction to prepubescents that often constitutes a mental illness. Unfortunately, our laws are failing them and, consequently, ignoring opportunities to prevent child abuse.

  • Current Event
    1 year ago
    by TNY
    +1 +1

    The Running Conversation in Your Head

    Language is the hallmark of humanity—it allows us to form deep relationships and complex societies. But we also use it when we’re all alone; it shapes even our silent relationships with ourselves. In his book, The Voices Within, Charles Fernyhough gives a historical overview of “inner speech”—the more scientific term for “talking to yourself in your head.” Fernyhough, a professor at Durham University in the U.K., says that inner speech develops alongside social speech. This idea was pioneered by Lev Vygotsky, a Russian psychologist who studied children in the 1920s and noted that...

  • Current Event
    1 year ago
    by takai
    +24 +1

    Mental health and relationships 'key to happiness'

    Good mental health and having a partner make people happier than doubling their income, a new study has found. The research by the London School of Economics looked at responses from 200,000 people on how different factors impacted their wellbeing. Suffering from depression or anxiety hit individuals hardest, whilst being in a relationship saw the biggest increase in their happiness. The study's co-author said the findings demanded "a new role from the state".

  • Analysis
    1 year ago
    by sauce
    +2 +1

    The Dyslexia Paradox

    It’s there, at the start of every conversation: the moment it takes your brain to adjust to an unfamiliar voice. It only lasts for a second or two, but in that brief time, your brain is thumbing its radio dial, tuning in to the unique pitch, rhythm, accent, and vowel sounds of a new voice. Once it is dialed in, the conversation can take off. This process is called rapid neural adaptation, and it happens constantly. New voices, sounds, sights, feelings, tastes, and smells all trigger this brain response. It is so effortless that we are rarely even aware it’s happening.

  • Analysis
    1 year ago
    by gottlieb
    +35 +1

    Is there such a thing as an emotional hangover? Researchers find that there is

    Emotional experiences can induce physiological and internal brain states that persist for long periods of time after the emotional events have ended, a team of New York University scientists has found. This study, which appears in the journal Nature Neuroscience, also shows that this emotional "hangover" influences how we attend to and remember future experiences.

  • Analysis
    1 year ago
    by funhonestdude
    +20 +1

    How To Condition Your Mind

    If I asked how you train your mind, what would you say? “I read a lot.” “I meditate for an hour every day.” “I journal every night.” If any of those things are true, then you’re doing a great job of feeding your mind. But what happens when you feed yourself and don’t workout? You get flabby. People who hit the gym regularly have bodies that show it. The same is true for people who condition their minds. Conditioning isn’t about feeding your brain new information or finding productivity “hacks,” it’s about creating a training routine for your mind.

  • Analysis
    1 year ago
    by jackthetripper
    +2 +1

    Confirmation Bias: How Intelligent People Develop Totally Incorrect Beliefs

    Study debunks long-held myth probably arising from the confirmation bias. The full moon is NOT linked to busier hospital emergency rooms or more births, a new study finds. The belief that there might be a link is likely down to a bias in the way even intelligent people think called the confirmation bias. Jean-Luc Margot, a UCLA professor of planetary astronomy, who carried out the study...

  • Analysis
    1 year ago
    by Apolatia
    +26 +1

    Want to Make a Lie Seem True? Say It Again. And Again. And Again

    YOU ONLY USE 10 percent of your brain. Eating carrots improves your eyesight. Vitamin C cures the common cold. Crime in the United States is at an all-time high. None of those things are true. But the facts don’t actually matter: People repeat them so often that you believe them. Welcome to the “illusory truth effect,” a glitch in the human psyche that equates repetition with truth. Marketers and politicians are masters of manipulating this particular cognitive bias—which perhaps you have become more familiar with lately.

  • Review
    1 year ago
    by hxxp
    +20 +1

    Breaking Up Feels Different for Men and Women

    The emotional and physical effects right after a breakup are different for men and women, but so is their recovery, according to a recent study. Researchers from Binghamton University and University College London asked 5,705 participants in 96 countries to dig deep into those emotional memories and recall their last breakup. The researchers then asked the participants to rate their emotional and physical pain following that breakup on a scale of one (none) to 10 (horrible).

  • Analysis
    1 year ago
    by melaniee
    +8 +1

    You’re a different person at 14 and 77, the longest-running personality study ever has found

    Look at a photo of yourself as a teenager and, mistaken fashion choices aside, it’s likely you see traces of the same person with the same personality quirks as you are today. But whether or not you truly are the same person over a lifetime—and what that notion of personhood even means—is the subject of ongoing philosophical and psychology debate. The longest personality study of all time, published in Psychology and Aging and recently highlighted by the British Psychological Society, suggests that over the course of a lifetime...

  • Current Event
    1 year ago
    by melaniee
    +24 +1

    How Poverty Changes the Brain

    You saw the pictures in science class—a profile view of the human brain, sectioned by function. The piece at the very front, right behind where a forehead would be if the brain were actually in someone’s head, is the pre-frontal cortex. It handles problem-solving, goal-setting, and task execution. And it works with the limbic system, which is connected and sits closer to the center of the brain. The limbic system processes emotions and triggers emotional responses, in part because of its storage of long-term memory.

  • Analysis
    1 year ago
    by TNY
    +17 +1

    Why Can Some Blind People Process Speech Far Faster Than Sighted Persons?

    Books fly from the shelf as Superman fans the pages in a blur devouring the information at blinding speed. Superhuman mental powers, including his extraordinary sense of hearing and blazing speed-reading, are as vital to Superman as his bullet-beating velocity and steel-bending strength. But it seems Superman isn't the only being with the gift of quickness.