2010-04-09 Spike activity

Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news:

New Scientist has an excellent piece on theories of how deep brain stimulation treats mental illness. Ignore the stupid title.

A study found by Barking Up the Wrong Tree finds higher intelligence is a “protective factor” against teenage sexual activity. Geek you say?

Slate has a fascinating article on cognitive distortions in how we think about geography and how they affect our judgements.

Noam Chomsky answers questions on cognitive science and anarchism on, er, reddit. Next week, Britney interviewed on PubMed.

NPR Morning Edition has a section on how ageing brains are slower but more shrewd.

There’s some excellent straight thinking coverage of the recent discovery of bones of an apparently new species of hominid over at Laelaps with Carl Zimmer using the opportunity to straighten out the ‘missing link’ fallacy.

The New York Times reports on how Google now return a crisis hotline when you do searches on how to commit suicide but only in English it seems. Half a billion Spanish speakers Рuna versión castellana por favor.

Spank me nanny, spank me! Not Exactly Rocket Science covers a study that explains how pain can be experienced as pleasurable. It’s all. about the. timing apparently.

The Guardian has a piece on an ‘anatomy of a media drug scare’ about the misreporting of UK drug deaths linked to currently legal drug mephedrone.

The New York Times visits a sanctuary for the exotic animals of dead drug lords in Colombia.

Supertaskers‘ or people who can multi-task without performance drop off are discussed in Time magazine.

Living the Scientific Life on What do Great Tits Reveal about the Genetics of Personality. Gutted.

There’s an excellent discussion of Allan Hobson’s neuroscientific theory of why we dream over at The Neuroskeptic.

Contemporary Psychotherapy magazine has just released it’s latest edition online.

There are some wonderful embroidered cellular scale neurobiology creations over at Bioemphemera.

The Neurocritic covers the American Academy of Neurology’s Neuro Film Festival which has some fantastic entries.

Is art the highest form of sanity? The Times has an intelligent discussion of the old ‘art and madness’ trope looking the misuse of the clich√© in recent writing.

The Guardian has a video interview with David Eagleman, neuroscientist and author of short stories about fantastic after-life possibilities. “We won’t die ‚Äì our consciousness will live forever on the internet”.

A new study on impulsivity, dopamine and addiction is covered by the splendid Addiction Inbox.

BBC News has an excellent piece by consistently excellent Mark Easton on the UK government’s failure to assess how effective their billions on drugs treatment services work.

Synthetic Neurobiology: Optically Engineering the Brain to Augment Its Function. A talk by MIT neural engineer Ed Boyden from The Singularity Summit 2009.

The Splintered Mind muses on people who come across as smart and how this relates to genuinely being smart. By the way, if you don’t read the blog, it is a public fountain of emerging philosophical thinking.

The New York Times discusses the ‘The Myth of Mean Girls‘ contrasting public concerns about the behaviour of girls and the fact that every major index of crime shows that violence by girls has been plummeting for years.

The mighty Language Log has an evolutionary psychology bingo card. Eyes down for a full house.

The Onion has a brilliant video report: DEA Official Announces Successful Drug Bust on Son.

The ever-awesome BPS Research Digest discusses a still not completely convincing study that reports to have found the direct evidence for mirror neurons in the human brain using depth electrodes, including in the, er, hippocampus.

The Frontal Cortex has been excellent lately.

Following up on our discussion of the ‘psychological typhoon eye’ phenomenon, the Extreme Fear blog discusses how a similar effect was found during the World War Two London Blitz.

One Comment

  1. rita
    Posted April 10, 2010 at 1:14 pm | Permalink

    “What do Great Tits Reveal about the Genetics of Personality”…………….oh thank goodness for capital leters! I was worried for a moment there……..


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