Of Mice and Mindfulness Mice do not, so far as we know, practice meditation. But in order to study how that activity affects human brains at the cellular level, researchers at the University of Oregon managed to put murine brains … Continue reading Do mice meditate?
Rules of ascent When asked in the 1920s why he wanted to climb Mount Everest, George Mallory notoriously quipped: ‘Because it’s there.’ It was a flippant remark, of course, but also an instance of what Friedrich Nietzsche had called ‘superficiality … Continue reading The harder the better
7 psychological concepts that explain the Trump era of politics These are strange, unsettling times. And for the past several months, I’ve been asking psychologists variations on a basic question: What research can best help us reckon with uncomfortable social … Continue reading A primer for politicians
A.I. That Predicted Kentucky Derby Superfecta Reveals 2017 Bets The betting world has spent the past several weeks obsessing over its predictions for this Saturday’s Kentucky Derby, but those who pay attention to artificial intelligence held back their money until … Continue reading Swarm intelligence
Our world outsmarts us When mulling over possible reasons for the alarming nastiness associated with the recent presidential election in the United States, I am reminded of my grade-school bully. Handsome, often charming, superbly athletic, the bully (let’s call him … Continue reading The complexity of social problems
Here’s Every Moment That Influences Human Behavior Human beings are a mess of contradictions. A person might hate violence but love violent action movies. Someone else might consider certain people are inherently good yet refuse to believe in the idea … Continue reading Decisions in the brain
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 … Continue reading The limbic system’s fears