Mixing Memory

Archives for December, 2006

Coolest… Experiment… Ever

Yesterday, Steve of OmniBrain asked, “What is the coolest psychology experiment ever?” Feel free to provide your own answer in comments there and/or here. As for me, there are some that I think are really cool for theoretical reasons, but the coolest ever just for the sheer implausibility of the results has to be Daniel…

Ortega y Gasset On Science

Here are two pretty lengthy passages from two Ortega y Gasset essays, both published in History as a System (one of my favorite books), and translated by Helene Weyl. I’m posting them because I think they’re relevant to our recent discussion on religion and science. Specifically, I think they’re relevant to the attitude towards science…

Humans are strange animals. We have such a deep need for social order that, when that order is threatened, we’ll do irrelevant things in an effort to preserve it. For example, when people are told that the conviction rate for a particular crime is low, they’ll assign harsher punishments to individuals who commit that crime1.…

Religion and Memory

In the paper I discussed the other day, Atran and Norenzayan argue that one of the most important factors in determining whether a religious narrative is successful is how memorable it is. Easily remembered narratives get passed on, while difficult to remember narratives are forgotten. Thus, successful religious narratives will likely exhibit features that make…

A Little Hegel

Over at A Brood Comb, Tanasije Gjorgoski posts a quote from Hegel’s Philosophy of Logic that is one of my favorites. I used to use part of it all the time in discussions with people (mostly scientists) who thought that all metaphysics was nonsense to be avoided at all cost. The Atomic philosophy forms a…

Not Last!

So far, Mixing Memory is not in last place in the voting for “best science blog”! That’s saying something, given that this blog is probably the lowest traffic blog on the list by a rather large margin. If you want to vote to insure that Mixing Memory finishes second to last, instead of last, you…

Welcome, Neurontic! Oh, and Some Other Stuff

Apparently, there’s another new brain blog on ScienceBlogs, though I only learned about it because Bora linked to it. So, a warm welcome to Neurontic. While I’m linking to other SBers, Shelley of Retrospectacle has a nice interview with Irene Pepperberg, the parrot lady. It looks like Dr. Pepperberg could use some help, funding-wise, so…

A few days ago, there was an interesting discussion of swear words in the blogosphere (my contribution was a map of Louisiana… don’t ask). Like any good cognitive psychologist with obsessive compulsive disorder, upon reading the swear words posts, I thought to myself, “What have I read in the literature about swear words?” The answer…

This was originally posted on the old blog on 1/5/05. I’m reposting it here, with a few editorial ommissions (contextual; references to things from back then that won’t make sense here), because of our recent discussion of religion. Hopefully I’ll be able to post about some of the empirical work over the next few days,…

2006 Weblog Awards Voting

You can go here to get the links for all the categories, or here to vote for the best science blog. You can vote once a day, apparently. Voting ends December 15.