Category Archives: Social

Why Westerners Fear Robots and the Japanese Do Not | WIRED

“We have a strong negative emotional response when someone kicks or abuses a robot—in one of the many gripping examples Darling cites in her paper, a US military officer called off a test using a leggy robot to detonate and … Continue reading

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New evidence for the “propinquity effect” – mere physical closeness increases our liking of desirable people and things – Research Digest

“In one, a group of male participants read lines from a modern musical version of Romeo and Juliet with an unfamiliar woman (actually a confederate helping the researchers) who was sitting either 80 centimetres or 150 centimetres away. Overall, those … Continue reading

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It’s Official - Trigger Warnings Might Actually Be Harmful

“The results of the sutdy were fascinating.” After controlling for various factors, such as sex, race, age, psychiatric history, and political orientation, the researchers found that those participants who received trigger warnings were significantly more likely (compared to those in … Continue reading

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An Alternative View of Human Nature | Psychology Today

“The !Kung of Africa swap arrows before going hunting, and when an animal is killed, the credit does not go to the person who fired the arrow, but to the person whom the arrow belongs to. If a person becomes … Continue reading

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The khipu code: the knotty mystery of the Inkas’ 3D records

“The Inka Empire (1400-1532 CE) is one of few ancient civilisations that speaks to us in multiple dimensions. Instead of words or pictograms, the Inkas used khipus – knotted string devices – to communicate extraordinarily complex mathematical and narrative information. … Continue reading

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Social Rejection Can Lead to Violence But, Mindfulness May Be the Solution

Image Source: image is credited to theresearchers. “People who have greater levels of mindfulness — or the tendency to maintain attention on and awareness of the present moment — are better able to cope with the pain of being … Continue reading

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People who deeply grasp pain or happiness of others, process music differently in brain

“The researchers found that compared to low empathy people, those with higher empathy process familiar music with greater involvement of the reward system of the brain, as well as in areas responsible for processing social information. […]   Highly empathic … Continue reading

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‘Algorithmic death spiral’ – The failing mental health of our machines

“Under most normal conditions, the driverless car will recognise a stop sign for what it is. But not all conditions are normal. Some recent demonstrations have shown that a few black stickers on a stop sign can fool the algorithm into thinking … Continue reading

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Mind Control * Barbara Ehrenreich’s radical critique of wellness and self-improvement

“Without opposing reasonable, routine maintenance, Ehrenreich observes that the care of the self has become a coercive and exploitative obligation: a string of endless medical tests, drugs, wellness practices, and exercise fads that threaten to become the point of life … Continue reading

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What’s Going on With Men? The Mother Wound as the Missing Link in Understanding Misogyny

“Patriarchy demands of men that they become and remain emotional cripples. Since it is a system that denies men full access to their freedom of will, it is difficult for any man of any class to rebel against patriarchy, to … Continue reading

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Everyday Misunderstandings: Postponing a Meeting

“When asked to move next Wednesday’s meeting two days forward, English speakers tend to disagree on whether it will move to Friday or Monday depending on their use of ego-moving or time-moving representations of time. […] Most participants answered Monday … Continue reading

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Hungry for Love: The Influence of Self-Regulation on Infidelity

“The current research examines the effect of self-regulation on the likelihood of committing infidelity. Thirty-two college students in exclusive romantic relationships interacted through a private chat room with an opposite-sex confederate. Prior to this interaction, a food-restriction task depleted half the … Continue reading

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Is belief superiority justified by superior knowledge?

“• People expressing belief superiority claim enhanced knowledge on that topic. […] • Despite perceiving themselves as more knowledgeable, knowledge assessments revealed that the belief superior exhibited the greatest gaps between their perceived and actual knowledge. […] • Specifically, when belief … Continue reading

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Higher educated people have negative attitudes towards the less educated

“In contrast with popular views of the higher educated as tolerant and morally enlightened, we find that higher educated participants show education-based intergroup bias: They hold more negative attitudes towards less educated people than towards highly educated people. […] Less … Continue reading

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Our brains rapidly and automatically process opinions we agree with as if they are facts

“Now a team led by Michael Gilead at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev report in Social Psychological and Personality Science that they have found evidence of rapid and involuntarily mental processes that kick-in whenever we encounter opinions we agree with, […]” “The key … Continue reading

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Too many men

“In China and India, men outnumber women by 70 million. Both nations are belatedly trying to come to grips with the policies that created this male-heavy generation” “Demographic changes are slow, in human terms, and this off-kilter M:F ratio will … Continue reading

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Old people can produce as many new brain cells as teenagers

“Old age may have its downsides, but losing the ability to grow new brain cells isn’t one: healthy people in their seventies seem to produce just as many new neurons as teenagers. The discovery overturns a decades-old theory about how … Continue reading

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New Study: Your Face Tells If You Own A Fleet Of Luxurious Cars

“When researchers asked subjects to determine the socio-economic class of people their faces, subjects were correct 68 percent of times. This figure is considerably higher than predictions made randomly.” […] “Though subjects were not aware of how they were determining … Continue reading

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Dancing Could Counteract Age-Related Decline

  “A study published in Frontiers in Neuroscience investigated the effects of an 18-month dancing intervention and traditional health fitness training on volumes of hippocampal subfields and balance abilities. The research finds that dancing seems a promising intervention for both … Continue reading

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How Hidden Social Contexts Influence Your Genetics

“A 2017 study explored this question, albeit with mice. Researchers paired mice together, punching holes in their ears, and tracked the rate of recovery. They found that the genome of a cagemate affected how fast their ears healed. Benjamin Domingue, … Continue reading

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