2010-11-05 Spike activity

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

The science of makeup. An excellent piece on the psychology of how cosmetics enhance allure over at Observations of a Nerd.

The New York Magazine has an excellent piece on how the psychology of narcissism affects politics. Widens from its initial focus on current US politics.

We’re more persuaded when we see similarities between ourselves and others, according to research covered by PsyBlog.

The Onion reports on a hot new relationship book that warns women: Wake Up! He’s A Shapeshifter.

A fascinating history of the “you can’t tell by looking” message in adverts about sexually transmitted infections – by Dr Petra.

Scientific American has another excellent instalment of Jess Bering’s Bering in Mind column on the evolution of obesity.

Retinal implant partially restores sight to blind. The cyber future is here and Not Exactly Rocket Science has an excellent piece on the science.

Wired on a call from US neurologists for strict sports-concussion guidelines after recent research showing long-term dangers.

Does how masculine or feminine a person is predict sexual orientation? asks Barking Up the Wrong Tree

The Lancet has a study on the effect of a recent UK ban on the stimulant mephedrone: still available and twice the price.

Does torture work? asks The Lay Scientist. Does it matter, is probably more to the point.

Science News reports on how the first stone tools in Africa may have been made perhaps 50,000 years earlier than previously thought.

Is there such a thing as a ‘culture of poverty‘? Neuroanthropology take a considered look at the concept.

The New York Times has a piece on how there is an increasing drive to diagnose autism in younger children to try and apply therapy to improve outcome.

What economists refer to as “anomalies” are actually what everyone else would call “real life”. Emorationality on how anomalies in traditional economic theory are actually normal psychology.

Seed Magazine discusses how what goes into placebo pills is barely documented in clinical trials, despite the fact that the ingredients might have an impact.

A new study on brain damage suggests cognition isn’t a localisable as we like to think. Oscillatory Thoughts covers his own study. I think we need more scientists blogging their own research. Good stuff.

Time covers new research finding a specific link between the CNTNAP2 gene and the extent of inter-cortical connections in the brain of people with autism.

There’s a great piece on new ‘designer drug’ mephedrone over at Addition Inbox.

CNN reports on the unusual case where a group of kids saw their dead schoolmate’s brain in a jar on a school trip to the medical examiner’s office.

The designer of the Psychology Today 1970’s ‘racism board game’ comments on our recent post about the product. Some fascinating context.

Gizmodo has some rough Facebook data that shows what time of year relationship breakups are more likely to occur.

The neurochemistry of mood and sleep changes are covered by the excellent Neuroskeptic. Also see his coverage on the ‘bionic eye’ news.

The Varsity has an excellent piece on the psychological management of the trapped Chilean miners.

Dan Ariely on his Irrationally Yours blog lists the ‘Seven Most Powerful New Economists’.

Wired Danger Room reports on how the US Air Force wants neuroweapons to overwhelm enemy minds.

A ‘koro’ penis shrinking panic strikes an Indian labour camp and Providentia has the write-up.

The Independent reports on new revelations on how modern art was used as CIA Cold War propaganda.

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