2010-10-15 Spike activity

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

Anti-depressant reboxetine has been found to be ineffective and potentially harmful. How come nobody knew, you ask. Well, because Pfizer hid 74% of the trial data. Link to scientific study here and Neuroskeptic’s take here.

The Telegraph has an excellent article on free will and the brain that has a deadpan photo made unintentionally hilarious by an odd caption.

Mind Hacks was kindly chosen as one of six notable science blogs by The Times Eureka Magazine. If you don’t remember The Times, it’s a British newspaper that locked itself out of the internet but you can read the piece here on selector Alice Bell’s blog.

The Wall Street Journal on how the White House have a policy of not sending condolence letters to families of soldiers who commit suicide and the campaign to change their medieval policy.

A round-up of the last three months of the excellent Evidence Based Mummy blog is now available online.

e! Science News covers a meta-analysis of more than a million people finding that females are equal to males in maths skills.

There’s more on the fascinating topic of unconscious expertise over at Barking up the Wrong Tree blog that asks whether experts can play chess without thinking.

Wired Science covers an interesting study finding that love makes you increasingly ignorant of your partner. Thankfully doesn’t affect those of us with the character depth of a dry puddle.

There’s some rough data gay / straight myth busting over at the blog of the OkCupid dating site which crunches their millions big database of members.

Science News reports on a study finding that a slow release implant of the drug buprenorphine helps heroin users kick the habit.

Philosopher Joshua Knobe and psychologist Lera Borodoitsky discuss whether language shapes thought on bloggingheads.tv via 3 Quarks Daily.

Cerebrum, the excellent online neuroscience magazine from The Dana Foundation has a great piece on the brain’s default network: Your Mind, on Its Own Time

Receiving a massage increases trust and co-operation in a financial game. Great coverage of a fascinating study from Dan Ariely’s Irrationally Yours blog.

The New York Times discusses the interesting proposition that happiness is not a state of mind.

A six-week science programme for two to three-year-old children boosted their exploratory ‘science-like’ play according to a study brilliantly covered by the BPS Research Digest. Timmy, take Tabatha’s hand out of the particle accelerator please.

New Scientist covers a study finding that for men, moving country can affect the libido. Once I get hold of the scientific paper, I fully intend to find fault with irrelevant details in this clearly misguided study.

There’s a completely fascinating discussion of language, context and its use in experimental philosophy over at Child’s Play.

The New York Times has an obituary for Philippa Foot, moral philosopher and inventor of the trolley problem.

Why are the effects of marijuana so unpredictable? asks The Frontal Cortex.

The LA Times asks whether bilingualism can improve your brain’s multitasking power? Je ne sais pas is the answer.

The Online Society: 50 Internet Psychology Studies. Great round-up of a slew of great studies on the net by the ever-excellent PsyBlog.

New Scientist has a piece on a fascinating study finding it’s possible to spot cases of flu by looking for changes in the movement and communication patterns of infected people by using data from the mobile phone network.

A study finding a correlation between screen time and psychological difficulties in children is ably de-hyped by Carmen Gets Around.

The Wall Street Journal looks at how marketing companies are building profiles by scraping data from internet forums.

Science you never knew you needed from NCBI ROFL: Detection and management of pornography-seeking in an online clinical dermatology atlas.

Wired Science covers a fascinating study suggesting that cultures evolve in small increments but collapse quickly.

Just loads of great stuff on Neuroanthropology this week. You’re best just heading on over and having a browse.

Only forensic psychology blog In the News could bring you news of an exciting new sex offender treatment model.

The LA Times covers a recent consensus giving guidelines on which patients with Parkinson’s disease should be eligible for deep brain stimulation surgery.

The US Army are getting concerned about the use of the new generation of synthetic cannabinoids among their rank and file, according to some great coverage by Addiction Inbox.

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