Conformity rules in cyberspace
... countering expectations that near-anonymity would encourage actions outside social norms. An Australian research team entered chat rooms and staged situations (a somewhat skeptically viewed practice, though the article doesn't mention it). Now they're studying users' reactions to avatars of different races and genders -- and for control purposes, a chair: Initial results show that most people approach the female character first and that some of those approaching the chair ask for a sex specification or assume it is female.
posted by dhartung
on Aug 24, 2001 -
Aunt Flo has left the building! "A new drug being developed would eliminate menstruation altogether, while still allowing women to get pregnant. Another drug would eliminate both periods and pregnancy."
Stock in companies that sell white jeans set to skyrocket, while sales of red and white patterned bedsheets plummet! On a more serious note, how much easier will this make it to plan adventurous vacations, honeymoons, and doctor's appointments? How much easier would life be if you never, ever had to think about having a period again?
posted by kristin
on Aug 3, 2001 -
Playing computer games makes kids smarter?
Although it reads like a headline from The Onion
, a British study funded by the ESRC has come to that conclusion. "They seemed able to focus on what they were doing much better than other people and also had better general co-ordination. Overall there was a huge similarity with top-level athletes."
Gotta go and show this to my boss...
posted by jedrek
on Jul 22, 2001 -
Do Republicans dream of electric sheep?
A new study concludes that Republicans have scarier and more frequent nightmares than Democrats. As usual, the explanation for this is split among party lines:
"What do you expect after eight years of William Jefferson Clinton?" --
Kevin Sheridan, Republican National Committee deputy press secretary.
"If George W. Bush were the leader of my party, I'd have trouble sleeping at night, too," --
Terry McAuliffe, Democratic National Committee chairman.
Wow... deja vu all over again
posted by Dirjy
on Jul 10, 2001 -
Americans less supportive of 1st amendment.
Roughly four in 10 people (41%) said the media have too much freedom. Four in 10 respondents (39%) believed the First Amendment goes too far in guaranteeing rights. 71% said it was "very" or "somewhat" important for the government to hold the media in check.
posted by frednorman
on Jul 8, 2001 -
'XIAMEN: A senior Beijing researcher on Taiwan affairs yesterday called for immediate measures to resist an ongoing bid by the island to promote its cultural independence..
posted by Kino
on Jun 26, 2001 -
Patient confidentiality vs. cancer research.
New rules on patient confidentiality prevent "research that recognises dangerous side effects of treatments and it would prevent research that would recognise avoidable causes of diseases and death. "
What is more important: 'medical progress' or 'your medical file'?
posted by nonharmful
on May 19, 2001 -
Jane Want Relationship, Tarzan Want Sex.
A study seems to confirm what women have long suspected -- women seek security in relationships, while men stick around for the sex.
The study says that in most species, monogomy is the top choice when fertility is hidden. Wonder if they took into account the Pill? ;)
posted by jennak
on Apr 26, 2001 -
The so-called model minority
inspire an amazing amount of mistrust, according to a survey of US residents. Featuring the revelation that one third
of those polled "said Chinese Americans are more loyal to China than to the United States. "
posted by anildash
on Apr 25, 2001 -
75% of Americans
favor Government funding of faith-based organizations. However, when asked about specific faiths
, that number drops dramatically to 38% for Buddhist Temples and 29% for the Nation of Islam. So what did they expect, their own religion should get funds, but no others?
posted by quirked
on Apr 11, 2001 -
The market-model university:
'...by looking at research on the health impact of tobacco, the "science" behind global warming or breast implants, or the effectiveness of a drug, we can see that it is not unusual for sponsored academics to fudge the data, suppress unfavourable evidence, and otherwise "torture the numbers till they confess"...'
posted by talos
on Mar 15, 2001 -
Thrown off the scent.
A fascinating story about The Pill and its effect on women's mate choice, and the effect of these choices on evolution. T-shirts belonging to unknown men were given to women to smell. All they had to do was say which smelt best. Women on the pill chose exactly the opposite t-shirts to those that didn't - find me free will, personal taste and the nature / culture divide in that if you can... [found via Plastic
- and if you want to talk about that
, then click here
posted by barbelith
on Feb 27, 2001 -
(You)^2: Wired Feature on Human Cloning
There's a very long, very fascinating article on the current work being done on human cloning research; or possibly the work that has already
been done. Many of those interviewed for the article are convinced that somewhere in the world human cloning has already taken place. Lots of cool/frightening material here.
posted by hanseugene
on Feb 22, 2001 -
is one of the major talents in the history of the development of computers, responsible for major advances
without which computers we buy now would be much different. She's
also a transsexual
, born physically male. While working for IBM she had her sex-change operation, and IBM immediately fired her for it.
posted by Steven Den Beste
on Dec 10, 2000 -
Too Much Information?
Heavy information overload: the world's total yearly production of print, film, optical, and magnetic content would require roughly 1.5 billion gigabytes of storage. This is the equivalent of 250 megabytes per person for each man, woman, and child on earth.
posted by faithnomore
on Oct 24, 2000 -
Lots of posts lately about the election, about other strange things, (and especially about my favorite subject to not read: Nader) and we haven't had a knock-down drag-out argument about ethics for a while. So I thought I'd start one about this.
Using up humans to collect medical data is unquestionably immoral and those who do it should be hung, if not put to death by torture. The question is whether those of us who had nothing to do with the collection of that data and have not done anything immoral become
immoral by using data collected that way in order to save lives. I'm going to make three posts below, so be patient.
posted by Steven Den Beste
on Oct 22, 2000 -
you would think that in researching child-pornography in order to report on it [for esquire?!] one might come across the information that transmitting such images is illegal
. not this guy. "The Story That Can't Be Told
posted by palegirl
on Oct 6, 2000 -
Clicking for consciousness
Depressingly reductionist. It is wrong to think that if we can't tell the difference between a binary machine in a box and a person in a box we should behave as if there were no difference.
posted by scum
on Sep 1, 2000 -
Readers prefer text over graphics.
In much more scientific news a new study by Stanford University indicates that visitors to your website are significantly more likely to read the text on your website (92%) than look at your photos (64%). What do you think? Will this change the way you design your site?
posted by shmuel
on May 8, 2000 -
Steve Champeon, one of my personal favorite Web-type people, has a good article over at Webmonkey called RTFM: A Guide to Online Research
. The gist of it is "look it up on the Web before you ask a stupid question on a mailing list", but it goes far beyond that in providing sources one can use to find answers to all sorts of questions.
posted by jkottke
on Feb 23, 2000 -
Scientific American has an interesting article on brand loyalty
on the web. Researchers at MIT are concluding that people stick with familiar commerce sites. Even though the web is supposed to enable shoppers to choose from any site, they instead stay with their favorite, even paying more for the security and familiarity. The researchers also concluded that $20 off coupons and bargain deals aren't going to bankrupt top sites, because it's a considerable investment (from a user's prospective) to shop at a new commerce site, and the offers offset that cost accordingly.
posted by mathowie
on Feb 21, 2000 -
Do we all need to get out more?
Although they're putting the "too much time with computers, not enough social interaction" spin on this study's findings, there are actually some good results of it. Heavy internet users spend less time in traffic (because they look up traffic
before going anywhere?), less time in malls (shopping online instead, duh), and less time watching TV (this is the best news of all, I barely watch it anymore because it's mostly inane garbage, whereas on the internet, I can find interesting things
). As for the less face time with friends and family, I have a growing number of friends online that I consider to be as close as any Real Life friend could be.
posted by mathowie
on Feb 17, 2000 -
And thanks to all the fish?
British researchers say fans of loud music may be responding to a 'pleasure-inducing hearing mechanism' passed down through evolution from fish to humans.
Well, slap me with a large trout!
posted by prolific
on Feb 17, 2000 -