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Alexander Neumann
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Alexander Neumann

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My first thought when reading the title was: how could you possibly test that?

The study design is much simpler than I expected but clever: "In their first experiment, Roberts and his colleagues trained rats to press a lever at the central point in a T-maze. The lever delivered a food reward, but it also lit up one of the two alleys, indicating where the rats could go to obtain another piece of food. Once the rats had learned to press the lever and enter the lit alley, the researchers stopped rewarding them for the lever press. They wanted to see if the rats would continue to press the lever in order to gain information about the location of food."
Humans are masters of metacognition: thinking about thinking. We can evaluate what we know and what we don't know. In a new study, scientists tried to study metacognition in rats.
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Consumer Physics’ $150 smartphone spectrometer can tell the number of calories in your food

Would you like to be able to look up the calorie content of the specific apple you’re eating? You could take it to a lab and run it through a spectrometer, but accurate spectrometers are huge, expensive machines that are often only owned by institutions and require training to use. A new startup, however, wants to make it easy as running an app and pairing a bluetooth dongle.

also check out this critical look at this project at pandodaily : http://pando.com/2014/04/30/consumer-physics-kickstarter-campaign-shows-that-not-all-crowd-funding-has-to-be-a-dishonest-mystery/
Summary: The SCiO is a handheld molecular analyzer, developed by Consumer Physics, which pairs with a smartphone through Bluetooth LE. The Kickstarter launched Tuesday morning and a fully operational SCiO starts at $149.
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That's pretty cool
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The BIG DEAL Explained (new comic!)

Full comic here:
phdcomics.com/comics.php?f=1691
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Interesting too see how flexible the auditory cortex in mice is, both its enhancement and impairment, since the changes were only temporary.
 
“The changes in the auditory cortex were achieved by changes in the strength of synaptic connections. These were believed to be unchangeable in adults.”
Could being visually impaired have had a role in the musical genius of Stevie Wonder and Ray Charles? We don't know for sure but a study in mice published this week has found that mice kept in the dark for just a week were able to hear softer sounds and distinguish pitch better than mice who had not been visually deprived...
http://www.nature.com/news/darkness-sharpens-hearing-in-adult-mice-1.14677?WT.mc_id=GPL_NatureNews
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I never really thought about immune changes in response to the agricultural revolution
 
I don't know why, but I find stuff like this fascinating.
Genome sequence of 7,000-year-old human remains overturns popular image of light-skinned European hunter-gatherers • Comment: Why are blue eyes so fascinating?
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A great overview of progressions for bodyweight exercises.
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Alexander Neumann

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Scientists estimate that there are over 100,000 intelligent alien civilizations in our galaxy alone—but we've never heard anything from any of them. Here are 13 possible explanations for why.
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Genetic mugshot recreates faces from nothing but DNA  http://idtb.io/uPLYp #DNA  Research article:   http://idtb.io/uPM9z 
#genetics  
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Hormone released after exercise can 'predict' biological age

Interestingly it is the same hormone (irisin) that increases brown fat activation.

Using a population of healthy, non-obese individuals, the team has shown those individuals who had higher levels of Irisin were found to have longer telomeres. The finding provides a potential molecular link between keeping active and healthy ageing with those having higher Irisin levels more 'biological young' than those with lower levels of the hormone.

#telomere  
#brownfat   
#exercise  
(Medical Xpress)—Scientists from Aston University have discovered a potential molecular link between Irisin, a recently identified hormone released from muscle after bouts of exercise, and the ageing process.
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I wonder what would be the best solution for Facebook to combat clickfarms. Then again, if the suspicions raised in the video are true, Facebook might have little incentive to do anything about it. 
 
Facebook was king, such that at one point there were even phones with a physical Facebook button on them. (A curiosity for a future museum's collection if there ever was one.) However, if the video below is accurate, their business model is in deep trouble and headed for a death spiral as more people notice. ... interesting.

Oh, and the Veritasium channel this appeared on is usually about science related topics presented in a most engaging and interesting fashion .. definitely worth checking out if you're into such things.
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Using BitTorrent to share your research data publicly - that makes so much sense, one has to wonder why it took so long for someone to do it. Why ask someone to invest large sums in storage, backup and access infrastructure when we can share that burden?

I rejoice every time I learn that someone uses BitTorrent to legally share information. It works just as wonderfully for that as it works for piracy.

http://academictorrents.com/
Welcome to Academic Torrents! Currently making 1.67TB of research data available. Sharing data is hard. Emails have size limits, and setting up servers is too much work. We've designed a distributed system for sharing enormous datasets - for researchers, by researchers. The result is a scalable, ...
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"The Danish trial gives real grounds for hope: CBT, it seems, can bring about major improvements for many people with bulimia. But the significance of the study goes further, because its leaders, Stig Poulsen and Susanne Lunn, are not CBT specialists but highly experienced psychoanalysts. Indeed, not only was the research conducted at a clinic devoted to psychoanalysis, the course of treatment was developed by Poulsen and Lunn themselves."
The claim that all forms of psychotherapy for mental illness are winners, known as the Dodo Bird Verdict, has been dealt a blow
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Have him in circles
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