Wednesday Round Up #21

The Brain

Gene Expression, Metamorphosis
Remodeling the brain and body in real-time?

Carl Zimmer, How Your Brain Can Control Time
“The three methods your mind uses to reverse, speed, and even slow the minutes”

Adam Keiper, The Synapse and the Soul
Excellent review of Michael Gazzaniga’s new book Human: the good, the bad, and the ugly. For more from Adam Keiper, check out his homepage.

The Evolving Mind, Doctor, My Mind Hurts!
Overcoming mind-brain dualism through bi-directional influences. One blogger’s struggles.

Deric Bownds, Brain Regions Active During Different Economic Decisions
How different parts of the brain handle different parts of decision making

Deric Bownds, Ecocultural Basis of Cognition
“Farmers and fishermen are more holistic than herders.” Cultural ways of paying attention to your environment changes how you perceive the world.

The Neurotic, JoVE: Journal of Visualized Experiments
Check out the video of an adult rat brain rewiring itself

Erik Sofge, For Future of Mind Control, Robot-Monkey Trials Are Just a Start
Popular Mechanics takes on brain-computer-machine interfaces and the future of cybernetics

Eureka Alert, Laka: ‘Language Exists in the Brain’
Misleading title. Really about research on bilingual processing of language.

On Amir, Tough Choices: How Making Decisions Tires Your Brain
“The brain is like a muscle: when it gets depleted, it becomes less effective”

Kim Masters, Neuroscience Helps Marketers Judge Ads’ Impact
Relatively balanced NPR piece on neuroscience and marketing, in this case television ads and “viewer’s attention span, memory and level of engagement”

Nicholas Bakalar, Having a Baby: Infant’s Smile Works on Mom’s Brain
Read between the reward paradigm lines: dopamine reacts to smiles and to crying, and hence helps direct attention to what’s immediately important

Three Toed Sloth, In Different Voices and Yet More on the Heritability and Malleability of IQ
On the plasticity of human faculties and the controversy over IQ

Laurie at Sharp Brains, Learning and the Brain: Resources for Educators
New brain research, new ways to think about learning and teaching—a guide to what’s good. For more, see Alvaro’s top ten brain training tips.

Mo at Neurophilosophy, ESOF2008: Looking Inside Your Brain: Keynote Speech
The history and future of brain imaging by Pierre Magistretti


Cynthia Fuchs Epstein, Great Divides: The Cultural, Cognitive and Social Bases of the Global Subordination of Women
Pdf article from American Sociological Review—quite the neuroanthropological analysis

John Colapinto, The Interpreter: Has a Remote Amazonian tribe Upended Our Understanding of Language?
Do the Pirahã undermine Chomsky’s universal grammar? A New Yorker article

Babel’s Dawn, Language Adapted to Us
“The human brain did not evolve rules that shape language grammatically; instead, grammar rules evolved to fit the brain.”

John Postill, Language-games, In/dividuals and Media Uses
Moving beyond structuralist notions through language games and social contexts—a brief research blurb

Bruno Macaes, Technology and Authenticity
“by shifting the agency of actions from the individual to the external world he inhabits, human enhancement undermines the goal of the modern technological project: to allow man to make the world his own”

Eric Cohen, Being Human in the Age of Technology
Podcast of a lecture and moderated discussion featuring Eric Cohen discussing his new book, In the Shadow of Progress

Mo at Neurophilosophy, Guidelines on Memory and the Law
British Psychological Society releases report on “the implications of memory research for the legal profession”

Manohla Dargis, Despair and Poetry at the Edges of Society
Reconsidering a forgotten classic: “The Exiles” is a sober 1961 documentary about three down-and-almost-out American Indians in the dilapidated Bunker Hill section of Los Angeles.

Janet Rae-Dupree, If You’re Open to Growth, You Tend to Grow
“people who believe that talent can be developed are the ones who really push, stretch, confront their own mistakes and learn from them.”

Richard Woodward, A Lost World Made by Women
The Beguines of Belgium—a medieval Catholic order as perhaps the world’s oldest women’s movement

Wray Herbert, Mimicry and Membership
Copying and the dynamics of inclusion and exclusion

Adobe Think Tank, The Invisible City: Design in the Age of Intelligent Maps
New maps, new ways of doing things: “As maps have become more complex, they have become our native medium for analyzing environments and societies”

Phil Vettel, Foie Gras Ban, We Hardly Knew Ye
Chicago prohibits and then repeals ban on foie gras in restaurants—and the politics of silliness and censorship

Ken Banks, Anthropology’s Technology-Driven Renaissance
High-tech anthropologists: “As our lives become exposed to more and more technology, and companies become more and more interested in how technology affects us and how we interface with it, anthropologists have found themselves in increasing demand”

Susana Hayward, Migrants in U.S. Fuel Maya City’s Tech Boom
Remittances, globalization, cyberspace, and cultural concerns

Daniel Finkelstein, The Social Psychology Revolution Is Reaching Its Tipping Point
New thinking about public policy

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