Forgot Where You Parked? Good School’s out for the summer — and so begins a long few months of parents’ and teachers’ worrying about all the things their children will forget before the fall. The fractions they won’t be able … Continue reading Forgetting as an educational virtue
Sex Sells? No, It Doesn’t Chiseled abs and bikinis can sell just about anything, right? According to the minds behind those Carl’s Jr. ads—and countless others—you’d think that’d be true. This idea that “sex sells” has hung around for more … Continue reading Is there too sex in marketing?
Why Your Brain Hates Other People As a kid, I saw the 1968 version of Planet of the Apes. As a future primatologist, I was mesmerized. Years later I discovered an anecdote about its filming: At lunchtime, the people playing … Continue reading Us Versus Them
Unreliability of fMRI Emotional Biomarkers Brain responses to emotion stimuli are highly variable even within the same individual, and this could be a problem for researchers who seek to use these responses as biomarkers to help diagnose and treat disorders … Continue reading Biases in fMRI studies
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?
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