Cognitive Daily

Archives for September, 2006

Casual Fridays: What music is best?

We’ve recently seen a fascinating study on music preference: What causes people to prefer certain songs to others? Why do some of us love Jewel but others think she’s a bad poet and a worse singer? We’re planning on writing up the results of that study for Cognitive Daily next week, but in the meantime,…

Take a look at this little video of a baby monkey. It’s just three days old. Isn’t it just adorable? Oh, there’s also this little bit about how the monkeys imitating humans is similar to earlier research on human babies, suggesting that it’s a social adaptation that is common not to just humans, but also…

The Wall Street Journal has an article discussing the accuracy of patient survey results in determining the effectiveness of HMOs. I’m not sure if it’s behind a paywall, so I’m going to quote liberally from the article: Researchers from the Rand Corp. think tank, the University of California at Los Angeles and the federal Department…

How emotion can improve your vision

Sometimes we think of emotions as completely separate from the more “objective” parts of the mind. You might believe that emotion can sometimes cloud your judgment, but it certainly can’t affect your vision system. Or can it? Take a look at the following image. It’s my attempt to use Photoshop to make a Gabor patch…

An excellent article in American Scientist compares “animal math” with math ability in infants. Some similarities and limitations emerge. While rhesus monkeys appear to successfully understand concepts such as 1+1=2 or 1+2=3, 2+2=4 appears beyond their ken. Five-month-old babies show about the same level of expertise. The always-excellent BPS Research Digest has an article on…

It’s Labor Day, the kids are home from school, and Greta has to work (why is it that only professors and manual laborers work on Labor Day?), so I hope you’re not expecting to see much serious thinking on CogDaily today. However, I did promise that I’d share some of the more interesting responses to…

Casual Fridays: What were they singing?

The results are in for last week’s Casual Fridays study, and the findings are … uncertain. The task was to try to parse out the lyrics of two songs. The first came from the American TV show “So You Think You Can Dance.” If you didn’t get a chance to participate in the study, you…

Submit to The Synapse!

This week’s Synapse will be at The Mouse Trap. To submit your entry, email your post to the.synapse.carnival {AT} gmail.com

This past Wednesday, Alvaro Castillo drove a 1997 Dodge Caravan into the parking lot of Orange High School in Hillsborough, North Carolina. Today’s Charlotte Observer has the rest of the story: He threw a smoke bomb onto a vehicle in the parking lot, then got two guns and ammunition out of the van and started…