Monthly Archives: October 2008

The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex

Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex is a hugely entertaining book on sex research that is chaotic, delightful and utterly compelling. The book is by science writer Mary Roach, whose past book Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers is one of my favourite science books of all time and when the publishers […]

Medellín at last

After several sleep-defying flights from the UK, I’m pleased to say I’ve arrived in Medell√≠n and look forward to working with some of the many talented cognitive scientists and clinicians they have here in Colombia. I’ve been kindly looked after by Jorge and his wife Claudia who are both local psychiatrists and in addition to […]

2008-10-03 Spike activity

A belated and backdated round-up of quick links from the past week in mind and brain news: SciAm Mind Matters has an excellent piece on ‘Metaphors of the Mind: Why Loneliness Feels Cold and Sins Feel Dirty’. Socially isolated people feel physically colder, according to a new study covered by BBC News. Seed Magazine discusses […]

Feeling out of control sparks magical thinking

Psychology Today journalist Matthew Hutson covers some fascinating experiments just published in this week’s Science that found that reducing participants’ control increase the tendency for magical thinking and the perception of illusory meaning in random or patternless visual scenes. Hutson covers all six experiments, but here’s a sample from his article which should give you […]

SciAmMind tackles implants, scans, death and terror

The latest edition of Scientific American Mind has just arrived on the shelves and the online articles are one of the best selections I’ve seen in a very long time – with pieces on brain-computer interfaces, five ways in which brain scans mislead us, toddlers and their temper tantrums, the science of gossip, why we […]

Neuropod on depression, theatre, speech and credit

The September edition of the Nature Neuroscience podcast Neuropod recently appeared online and covers the treatment of depression, how deaf people retain their ability to speak, a psychoanalytic contribution to the understanding of stock market instability, and a feature on the London play Reminiscence (in which I make a brief appearance). The discussion on depression […]

Autism in 100 words

A micro explanation of autism by Simon Baron-Cohen from this month’s British Journal of Psychiatry as part of their monthly feature which tries to explain a key concept in psychiatry in 100 words. Autism – in 100 words Simon Baron-Cohen Autism Spectrum Conditions (ASC) occur in 1% of the population, are strongly heritable, and result […]

The action potential, through the medium of dance

Dana Kotler and Joy Gibson are two dancers and medical students at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine who decided they’d like to illustrate the neuronal action potential through the medium of modern dance. It’s a rather unique interpretation and one that will likely stay with me for a while. And if that doesn’t interest […]


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