‘I stick my finger in existence — it smells of nothing.’ –Kierkegaard

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We Westerners have a boring pointing repertoire. Most of the time, we just jut out our arm and index finger. If our hands are occupied — carrying a heavy load, say — then we might resort to a jerk of the head or elbow. But if the pointer finger’s free, we’ll point it.

Not so for the Yupno. Within a few days of their arrival in the valley, Núñez and Cooperrider noticed that the Yupno often point with a sharp, coordinated gesture of the nose and head that precedes them looking toward the point of interest. […]

Pointing, he answered, seems to be a fundamental building block of human communication. Great apes are never seen pointing in the wild. And in human babies, pointing develops even before the first word […]

The Yupno aren’t the only ones who point with their face. Lip pointing — in which protruding lips precede an eye gaze toward the area of interest — has been observed in people from Panama, Laos, and other groups in Australia, Africa, and South America. Head pointing, according to one study, happens frequently among people speaking Arabic, Bulgarian, Korean, and African-American Vernacular English.

{ Phenomena | Continue reading }

‘Science does not think.’ —Heidegger

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The main objective of this study was to describe male and female lumbar spine and hip motion and muscle activation patterns during coitus and compare these motions and muscle activity across five common coital positions. […]

A secondary objective was to determine if simulated coitus could be used in place of real coitus for future coitus biomechanics research.

{ via University of Waterloo | PDF }

Every day, the same, again

7654.gifDJs all over the world are now deliberately making mistakes during their mixes to prove to fans and critics that they are in fact real DJs.

When you set sad lyrics against happy music, the music wins

Research on twins has found that our genes may determine an innate baseline for how happy we’ll be during our lives

Study of more than 100,000 people finds three genetic variants for IQ — but their effects are maddeningly small.

Bra Wearing Not Associated with Breast Cancer Risk

Is spooning really the best position for men with back pain? More: Bad back? These are the best sex positions to ease the pain.

Cutting Back On Carbs, Not Fat, May Lead To More Weight Loss

A simple rule for making every restaurant meal better: Eat at 5 p.m. or 5:30.

Imagine that someone else was controlling your actions. You would still look like you, and sound like you, but you wouldn’t be the one deciding what you did and what you said. Would anyone notice the difference?

Research has found that while around 1% of the general population are psychopaths, the level rises to 3% amongst business managers.

How Movies Trick Your Brain Into Empathizing With Characters

Serialized Killers: Prebooting Horror in Bates Motel and Hannibal

Only 1.5 percent of looted work is ever recovered. Why don’t museums put GPS trackers on everything?

Burger King goes “Goth” in Japan

The lessons around commitment and intimacy get deeper as Saturn continues his two-and-a-half-year sojourn through your partnership house, Taurus.

‘Nothing will come of nothing.’ —Shakespeare

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The next time I had to negotiate a contract, it began in typical fashion with a prospective employer sending me a lopsided agreement and asking me to counter-propose. I said I was incompetent to do that and suggested they write a new contract as if they were me, putting in everything that would be in my best interests, and then taking out everything they would never agree to. Since that would be the best I could get, I would accept it subject to agreement on compensation.

We started with base pay. I wrote down the least I would work for and asked them to write down the most they would offer a perfect person, irrespective of whether I was that person or not. If when we exchanged papers, their number wasn’t higher than mine then we could stop there and save time. Their number was twice the best base pay I had ever received in past jobs, and my request was for $0. I explained that my goal is to live a debt-free life, and therefore I wanted to give value before receiving compensation.

{ qz | Continue reading }

‘If you’re critical, you’re already out of the game.’ —Jeff Koons

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This paper considers when a firm’s freely chosen name can signal meaningful information about its quality, and examines a setting in which it does.

Plumbing firms with names beginning with an “A” or a number receive five times more service complaints, on average. In addition, firms use names beginning with an “A” or a number more often in larger markets, and those that do have higher prices.

These results reflect consumers’ search decisions and extend to online position auctions: plumbing firms that advertise on Google receive more complaints, which contradicts prior theoretical predictions but fits the setting considered here.

{ Ryan C. McDevitt | PDF }

Every day, the same, again

5.jpg Growing mushrooms in diapers

Man Stabs Roommate For Being Too Loud While Having Threesome

The Man With Two Penises

People’s belief in free will is lower when they need to urinate or desire sex

It is possible to predict the future – and a new breed of ‘superforecasters’ knows how to do it

Why Amazon Has No Profits (And Why It Works)

“At some factories, robots are even building other robots, producing about 50 robots per 24-hour shift and operating unsupervised for as long as 30 days at a time.” [via gettingsome]

Everything That’s Wrong With Banking Summed Up In One Bonehead Advertisement

We’ve reached a point in our civilization where counterculture has mutated into a self-obsessed aesthetic vacuum. So while hipsterdom is the end product of all prior countercultures, it’s been stripped of its subversion and originality. More: DATAcide: The Total Annihilation of Life as We Know It

Global suicide map

New Toyota minivan equips parents with mic to make it easier to yell at unruly kids in the back

Richard Feynman’s Lectures on Physics

Yves Klein: The man who invented a colour

Porn for the Blind [thanks GG]

Hear the loud alarum bells

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To examine the effects of grunting on velocity and force production during dynamic and static tennis strokes in collegiate tennis players. […]

The velocity, force, and peak muscle activity during tennis serves and forehand strokes are significantly enhanced when athletes are allowed to grunt.

{ Journal of Strength & Conditioning Research | Continue reading | more }

image { Imp Kerr, Pantherhouse, 2000 }

‘The fundament upon which all our knowledge and learning rests is the inexplicable.’ —Schopenhauer

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One: Sit with your eyes closed and your back straight.

Two: Notice what it feels like when your breath comes in and when your breath goes out, try to bring your full attention to the feeling of your breath coming in and going out.

Third step is the biggie. Every time you try to do this, your mind is going to go crazy. You are going to start thinking about all sorts of stupid things like if you need a haircut, why you said that dumb thing to your boss, what’s for lunch, etc. Every time you notice that your mind is wandering, bring your attention back to your breath and begin again. This is going to happen over and over and over again and that is meditation.

It’s not easy. You will “fail” a million times but the “failing” and starting over is succeeding. So this isn’t like most things in your life where, like if you can’t get up on water skis, you can’t do it. Here the trying and starting again, trying and starting again, that’s the whole game.

{ Barking up the wrong tree | Continue reading }

Every day, the same, again

2.jpg Robert Rauschenberg Painting Helps Solve 1950s Murder

Town in Brazil made up entirely of women has made an appeal for bachelors

Self-Deceived Individuals Are Better at Deceiving Others

The evidence that abstinence from alcohol is a cause of heart disease and early death is irrefutable

Double mastectomy for breast cancer ‘does not boost survival chances’

Neuroscientists reverse memories’ emotional associations: Brain circuit that links feelings to memories manipulated

Both men and women find humility attractive

An office enriched with plants makes staff happier and boosts productivity by 15 per cent

This study examines whether tattoo visibility affects recidivism length of ex-offenders [PDF]

What People Cured of Blindness See

Time Travel Simulation Resolves “Grandfather Paradox”

Scientists use E.coli bacteria to create fuel

Hackers Are Homing in on Hospitals

The Goldman Sachs Aluminum Conspiracy Lawsuit Is Over

Indian start-up launches shoes that show you the way

Where is Josh Harris now?

Portraits of former Playboy Bunnies

I Wanted a Floor Lamp

‘It belongs to the imperfection of everything human that man can only attain his desire by passing through its opposite.’ –Kierkegaard

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Take the Danes, for instance. True, they claim to be the happiest people in the world, but why no mention of the fact they are second only to Iceland when it comes to consuming anti- depressants? […] The Danes also have the highest level of private debt in the world (four times as much as the Italians, to put it into context; enough to warrant a warning from the IMF), while more than half of them admit to using the black market to obtain goods and services.

Perhaps the Danes’ dirtiest secret is that, according to a 2012 report from the Worldwide Fund for Nature, they have the fourth largest per capita ecological footprint in the world. Even ahead of the US. […] According to the World Cancer Research Fund, the Danes have the highest cancer rates on the planet. “But at least the trains run on time!” I hear you say. No, that was Italy under Mussolini. The Danish national rail company has skirted bankruptcy in recent years, and the trains most assuredly do not run on time. […]

I am very fond of the Finns, a most pragmatic, redoubtable people with a Sahara-dry sense of humour. But would I want to live in Finland? In summer, you’ll be plagued by mosquitos, in winter, you’ll freeze – that’s assuming no one shoots you, or you don’t shoot yourself. Finland ranks third in global gun ownership behind only America and Yemen; has the highest murder rate in western Europe, double that of the UK; and by far the highest suicide rate in the Nordic countries.

The Finns are epic Friday-night bingers and alcohol is now the leading cause of death for Finnish men.

{ Guardian | Continue reading | More: Nordic nations respond to the original article }

Every day, the same, again

28.jpg World’s most pierced man barred from Dubai

Women college students average 10 hours a day on their cellphones and men students spend nearly eight

Hangover Cure Finally Comes to the U.S.

Date rape drug-detecting nail polish won’t work

There were no associations between childhood family income and subsequent violent criminality and substance misuse

When you are in the middle of negotiation, is it best to make the first offer, or to wait for the other party to make the first offer and then respond to it?

Music helps you focus on your own thoughts, but only if you like it

Neuroscientists watch imagination happening in the brain

The use of hallucinogens in research and therapy

The more strongly people believed in free will, the more they liked making choices

Panic disorder and epilepsy were associated with low belief in free will.

Here, we test whether creativity increases dishonesty [PDF]

Researchers have found that “solid-head” power toothbrushes have up to 3,000 times less bacteria when compared to “hollow-head” toothbrushes.

Home is where the microbes are

Schrödinger’s cat caught on quantum film

The smell of rain: what is petrichor?

Quantification of Pizza Baking Properties of Different Cheeses, and Their Correlation with Cheese Functionality [study abstract]

Vending machine dispenses food for stray dogs when people insert recyclable bottles and cans

Inside Google’s Secret Drone-Delivery Program

This Is Uber’s Playbook for Sabotaging Lyft

When A Machine Learning Algorithm Studied Fine Art Paintings, It Saw Things Art Historians Had Never Noticed

Today, around 75% of all IKEA’s product images are CG

Crying Infant Assuager (new patent)

Camel toe challenge [more]

First principle, Clarice. Simplicity.

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There seems to be wide support for the idea that we are living in an “age of complexity,” which implies that the world has never been more intricate. This idea is based on the rapid pace of technological changes, and the vast amount of information that we are generating (the two are related). Yet consider that philosophers like Leibniz (17th century) and Diderot (18th century) were already complaining about information overload. The “horrible mass of books” they referred to may have represented only a tiny portion of what we know today, but much of what we know today will be equally insignificant to future generations.

In any event, the relative complexity of different eras is of little matter to the person who is simply struggling to cope with it in everyday life. So perhaps the right question is not “Is this era more complex?” but “Why are some people more able to manage complexity?” Although complexity is context-dependent, it is also determined by a person’s disposition. In particular, there are three key psychological qualities that enhance our ability to manage complexity:

1. […] higher levels of IQ enable people to learn and solve novel problems faster […]

2. […] individuals with higher EQ [emotional quotient] are less susceptible to stress and anxiety […]

3. […] People with higher CQ [curiosity quotient] are more inquisitive and open to new experiences […] they are generally more tolerant of ambiguity.
 
{ Harvard Business Review | Continue reading }

photo { Never before seen Corinne Day shots }