The Family That Built an Empire of Pain The north wing of the Metropolitan Museum of Art is a vast, airy enclosure featuring a banked wall of glass and the Temple of Dendur, a sandstone monument that was constructed beside … Continue reading The marketing of painkillers
How to defend against your own mind When it comes to some of the most important decisions we make — how much to bid for a house, the right person to hire, or how to plan for the future — … Continue reading Exploring biases
The Trump-Goldfinger Illusion Remember the duck-rabbit illusion? It can be seen both as a duck and as a rabbit. If you first see it as a duck and later notice that it can also be seen as a rabbit, your … Continue reading It all starts with perception
Poverty and the Developing Brain People love “Rags to Riches” stories—those sanguine tales in which someone who grew up in poverty manages to become extremely wealthy and professionally successful. These stories breathe life into the American Dream, inspire hope, and … Continue reading Does poverty shrink hippocampus?
What You Need to Know About a Leprechaun, Your Brain, and Learning I once heard a funny story about a leprechaun. It was told by Sanjay Sarma, a professor of mechanical engineering and the Vice President for Open Learning at … Continue reading The story of the little leprechaun
Two Distinct Brain Regions Have Independent Influence on Decision-Making Often when we make a decision, we calculate its “expected value,” by multiplying the value of something (how much we want or need it) with the probability that we might be … Continue reading Brain specializations
The weird power of the placebo effect, explained Over the last several years, doctors noticed a mystifying trend: Fewer and fewer new pain drugs were getting through double-blind placebo control trials, the gold standard for testing a drug’s effectiveness. In … Continue reading Placebo in your brain