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Two months from illiterate to MP3 trading hax0rz.

Two months from illiterate to MP3 trading hax0rz. Very cool social experiment showing how easy today's GUIs are to use, especially for kids.
posted by skallas on Aug 27, 2001 - 12 comments

Conformity rules in cyberspace

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 - 9 comments

Aunt Flo has left the building!

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 - 66 comments

Playing computer games makes kids smarter?

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 - 11 comments

This breaking story brings a new aspect to a complex debate. Reasearchers in a private clinic in the US have created human embryos specifically for the purpose of extracting stem cells. This seems a good platform on which to discuss the wider issue of the interaction between public/private research funding, technology and life. Here's hoping it won't just end up a pro-life/pro-choice bloodbath.
posted by davehat on Jul 11, 2001 - 7 comments

Do Republicans dream of electric sheep?

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 - 11 comments

Americans less supportive of 1st amendment.

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 - 17 comments

Survey on Learning Standard American English in Black American Communities.

Survey on Learning Standard American English in Black American Communities. This academic survey is designed to gather attitudes among Black Americans regarding Ebonics, better known to linguists at African American Vernacular English.
posted by Mo Nickels on Jul 5, 2001 - 42 comments

News from the Field on The Archeology Channel

News from the Field on The Archeology Channel
The Archaeology Channel is a collection of individually submitted reports and presentations of new research in archaeology, in various media formats. This high-tech self-publishing is really popular with archaeologists; it reminds me of Harappa.com. Yet, I don't know of any sites like this.
posted by rschram on Jul 3, 2001 - 1 comment

Scientist Says Mind Continues After Brain Dies.

Scientist Says Mind Continues After Brain Dies. This articles raises an interesting new theory on how the mind works, suggesting that perhaps a person's consciousness exists independent of the brain, with the brain acting as a sort of receiver of thoughts. Interesting and scary.
posted by mcsweetie on Jun 29, 2001 - 51 comments

'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..'. [More]
posted by Kino on Jun 26, 2001 - 11 comments

Patient confidentiality vs. cancer research.

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 - 2 comments

Oscar winners live longer

Oscar winners live longer...winning the coveted golden statuette can add four years to your life. BTW, the next article shows that half of heroin addicts die early.
Big surprise: "drugs = bad for ya" and "success = good for ya".
posted by nonharmful on May 15, 2001 - 9 comments

A protest

A protest of scientific journals, organized by the Public Library of Science with the help of over 20,000 scientists and researchers world-wide, will begin in September 2001 unless old research papers are made freely available online.
posted by techgnollogic on May 2, 2001 - 2 comments

Jane Want Relationship, Tarzan Want Sex.

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 - 14 comments


Hello, Peril.

Hello, Peril. 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 - 56 comments

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 - 36 comments

Fighting cancer one computer at a time

Fighting cancer one computer at a time - Following in the footsteps of the SETI@Home project, a new program is being launched enabling you to use your spare computer power helping to research new treatments in the fight against cancer.
posted by Noah on Apr 3, 2001 - 5 comments

The market-model university:

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 - 7 comments

Thrown off the scent.

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 - 27 comments

(You)^2: Wired Feature on Human Cloning

(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 - 2 comments

Bill Joy thinks the world will end

Bill Joy thinks the world will end unless we stop doing certain kinds of research right now. I think Bill Joy is full of crap, but he has valid points. (More inside)
posted by Steven Den Beste on Feb 17, 2001 - 28 comments

"The Standard Model" of the universe takes a hit.

"The Standard Model" of the universe takes a hit.
Score one for string theorists. Scientists at the Brookhaven National Laboratory appear to have discovered a new type of subatomic particle that would disprove the currently accepted model for the nature of space and matter.
posted by Optamystic on Feb 9, 2001 - 3 comments

Researchers say they have slowed light to a dead stop, stored it and then released it as if it were an ordinary material particle.

Researchers say they have slowed light to a dead stop, stored it and then released it as if it were an ordinary material particle. Cool, huh?
posted by tiaka on Jan 19, 2001 - 21 comments

Lynn Conway

Lynn Conway 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 - 7 comments

Would you swallow poison for $1000?

Would you swallow poison for $1000? 100 people did. (Actually only half, but none of them know who the controls are.)
posted by Steven Den Beste on Nov 28, 2000 - 13 comments

Yes, you have two brains.

Yes, you have two brains. It looks like your digestive tract is a huge "brain."
posted by skallas on Nov 6, 2000 - 3 comments

Too Much Information?

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 - 15 comments

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 - 30 comments

Girls can't throw?

Girls can't throw? They found that men had a better aim than women, but male and female monkeys were about equal
posted by owillis on Oct 13, 2000 - 8 comments

According to a double-blind study, Zicam, an over the counter nasal spray, cuts duration of the common cold by 75%.

According to a double-blind study, Zicam, an over the counter nasal spray, cuts duration of the common cold by 75%. Now when I call in sick to work, I'll have to say I have cancer.
posted by grumblebee on Oct 12, 2000 - 8 comments

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 - 29 comments

Amazon.com apologizes for random price test...

Amazon.com apologizes for random price test... Yeah, but look how long it took them to do it. "Oh, um, now that we've covered our costs for R&D we can end the test and apologize. That's the ticket!"
posted by silusGROK on Sep 28, 2000 - 4 comments

http://www.guardianunlimited.co.uk/international/story/0,3604,372067,00.html

http://www.guardianunlimited.co.uk/international/story/0,3604,372067,00.html Thousands of South American indians were infected with measles, killing hundreds, in order to for US scientists to study the effects on primitive societies of natural selection.
posted by hobbes on Sep 22, 2000 - 5 comments

Clicking for consciousness

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 - 3 comments

Texas Scientists achieved 20 minutes of invisibility

Texas Scientists achieved 20 minutes of invisibility on 10 mm of skin of a rat. I know this is a great advance in medicine and all that stuff, but what concerns me is this may be also a new generation of spies, terrorists and thieves...or am I just paranoid?
posted by neo on Aug 23, 2000 - 16 comments

Two independent research teams have successfully cloned pigs.

Two independent research teams have successfully cloned pigs. The importance? Due to their comparable organ size, pigs are good candidates for farming transplant material. Pork bellies may be more than a commodity...
posted by Awol on Aug 16, 2000 - 4 comments

It'll never work.

It'll never work.
posted by honkzilla on Jul 7, 2000 - 13 comments

Mutant Mice Drink More Alcohol, Recover Faster

Mutant Mice Drink More Alcohol, Recover Faster Now this is useful scientific research. Please alter my genes.
posted by PaperCut on Jun 1, 2000 - 1 comment

Readers prefer text over graphics.

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 - 4 comments

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 - 0 comments

Scientific American has an interesting article on brand loyalty

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 - 0 comments

We're not a bunch of internet-loners!

We're not a bunch of internet-loners! We're vindicated - new study shows that people who become reclusives though using the internet are in a minority.
posted by tomcosgrave on Feb 18, 2000 - 1 comment

Do we all need to get out more?

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 to read and enjoy). 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 - 11 comments

And thanks to all the fish?

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 - 4 comments

The Annals of Improbable Research always has fun stuff.
posted by tdecius on Oct 12, 1999 - 0 comments

NASA scientists are successfully growing heart tissue in bioreactors. Need a kidney? No prob, need a heart? Got one. With tech like this, I should probably take up smoking!
posted by mathowie on Oct 6, 1999 - 0 comments

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