twitter
facebook twitter tumblr newsletter
blog-shines-like-174
Shines Like Gold
By
what matter who's speaking?
rss feed

Triple-Decker Weekly, 137

tdw137

Families sue US sperm bank after ‘genius’ donor turns out to be felon with mental health issues.

Fortune cookies are often served as a dessert in Chinese restaurants in the United States and some other countries, but are absent in China

The Longest Word in the World (189,819 letters) [disputed whether it is a word]

The best day and time to hold a meeting: Tuesday, 2:30pm, according to a study

People who talk for more than roughly half minute at a time are boring and often perceived as too chatty

Psychologists have identified the length of eye contact that people find most comfortable (just over three seconds)

Study Shows Mediums Are Wrong 46.2% of the Time

People who made detailed predictions about sporting events (e.g., how many hits each baseball team would get) made worse predictions about more general outcomes (e.g., which team would win)

A Chinese cosmetics company is using skin harvested from the corpses of executed convicts to develop beauty products for sale in Europe [Thanks Tim]

A designer will grow Alexander McQueen’s skin in a lab to use for leather bags and jackets

Swedish church to use drones to drop thousands of Bibles in ISIS-controlled Iraq

Revisiting Depression Contagion […] A Speed-Dating Study. […] After four minutes of interaction with partners with high levels of depressive symptoms, participants did not experience increased negative affect; instead, they experienced reduced positive affect, which led to the rejection of these partners. [Clinical Psychological Science]

We found that women experience more jealousy toward women with cosmetics, and view these women as more attractive to men and more promiscuous. [Perception]

‘Smart’ Dildo Company Sued For Tracking Users’ Habits

Is Sex Good for Your Health? A National Study on Partnered Sexuality and Cardiovascular Risk among Older Men and Women

Three healthy men (32±3.6 years) donated the first semen samples after 3-4 days of sexual abstinence followed by three subsequent samples on the same day at two-hour interval each.

Why Are There Gay Women?

Women who have had their appendix or tonsils removed appear to be more fertile, a 15-year study suggests

An obscure virus spread through saliva – i.e. kissing – has been linked to unexplained infertility in women.

Fetal masturbation

Masturbation Notice, University of North Carolina

I Tried Anal Weed Lube so You Don’t Have To

‘Fellatio cafe’ where customers receive oral sex while they drink their (£40) coffee to be opened in Geneva

Overall, most U.S. men were satisfied with their genitals

The penile plethysmograph is a machine for measuring changes in the circumference of the penis [Thanks Tim]

Is divorce seasonal? Study shows biannual spike in divorce filings

Biggest factor in divorce is the husband’s employment status, study

Women cry on average 5.3 times a month, men only 1.3 times a month. Why do we cry? And why might there be differences between men and women?

Apple consumption is related to better sexual quality of life in young women [PDF]

Seafood fraud comes in different forms, including species substitution — often a low-value or less desirable seafood item swapped for a more expensive or desirable choice — improper labeling, including hiding the true origin of seafood products, or adding extra breading, water or glazing to seafood products to increase their apparent weight. […] One in five of the more than 25,000 samples of seafood tested worldwide was mislabeled. [Oceana | PDF]

Sugar industry bought off scientists, skewed dietary guidelines for decades [NYT] Related: Breakfasts

The edible-insect industry has grown big enough to start lobbying Washington

Man creates smoothie made of McDonald’s burgers

Benefits of drinking coffee outweigh risks, review suggests

Marketing Vegetables in Elementary School Cafeterias to Increase Uptake — 90.5% more students took vegetables from the salad bar when exposed to the vinyl banner only, and 239.2% more students visited the salad bar when exposed to both the television segments and vinyl banners.

The crusade against serving food on bits of wood and roof slates, jam-jar drinks and chips in mugs

French town flooded with wine after protesters crack open vats

Some philosophers and physicians have argued that alcoholic patients, who are responsible for their liver failure by virtue of alcoholism, ought to be given lower priority for a transplant when donated livers are being allocated to patients in need of a liver transplant. The primary argument for this proposal, known as the Responsibility Argument, is based on the more general idea that patients who require scarce medical resources should be given lower priority for those resources when they are responsible for needing them and when they are competing with patients who need the same resources through no fault of their own. Since alcoholic patients are responsible for needing a new liver and are in direct competition with other patients who need a new liver through no fault of their own, it follows that alcoholic patients ought to be given lower priority for a transplant. In this article, I argue against the Responsibility Argument by suggesting that in order for it to avoid the force of plausible counter examples, it must be revised to say that patients who are responsible for needing a scarce medical resource due to engaging in behavior that is not socially valuable ought to be given lower priority. I’ll then argue that allocating organs according to social value is inconsistent or in tension with liberal neutrality on the good life. Thus, if one is committed to liberal neutrality, one ought to reject the Responsibility Argument. [Bioethics]

Medical benefits of dental floss unproven [Thanks Tim]

Patient Preference for Waxed or Unwaxed Dental Floss

Why don’t hotels give you toothpaste?

78% of the children in our sample who had ADHD as a child, no longer had the disorder when they were 18. Their ADHD had resolved over time.

If you’re over 40, working more than 25 hours a week could be affecting your intelligence, new research suggests.

Research suggests being lazy is a sign of high intelligence

Facial expressions of intense joy and pain are indistinguishable

Researchers tend to look for answers where the looking is good, rather than where the answers are likely to be hiding

20% of scientific papers on genes contain gene name conversion errors caused by Excel

Thousands of fMRI brain studies in doubt due to software flaws which routinely produced false positives, resulting in errors 50 per cent of the time or more.

Neither intelligence nor education can stop you from forming prejudiced opinions – but curiosity may help you make wiser judgements

Immediately after we’ve been shunned, our brains engage a subtle mechanism that alters our sense of whether other people are making eye contact with us, so that we think it more likely that they are looking our way.

“We run physics simulations all the time to prepare us for when we need to act in the world” Researchers find brain’s ‘physics engine’ predicts how world behaves

Trust Your Gut or Think Carefully? Examining Whether an Intuitive, Versus a Systematic, Mode of Thought Produces Greater Empathic Accuracy

Experiments suggests that humans are able to sense magnetic fields as a kind of sixth sens

Visceral states like thirst, hunger, and fatigue can alter motivations, predictions, and even memory. It can also shift moral standards and increase dishonest behavior.

Implicit memory for words heard during sleep

Memories of unethical actions become obfuscated over time

How new experiences boost memory formation

Too much activity in certain areas of the brain is bad for memory and attention

Study strengthens evidence that cognitive activity can reduce dementia risk

Researchers have built an artificial neuron

Scientists just discovered a new type of eye movement we do every day

Mangan speculates that the brain’s internal clock runs more slowly in elderly people. As a result, the pace of life appears to speed up. [More: Time really does seem to fly by faster as we age]

For hundreds of years, Koreans have used a different method to count age than most of the world. […] A person’s Korean age goes up a year on new year’s day, not on his or her birthday. So when a baby is born on Dec. 31, he or she actually turns two the very next day. [Quartz]

More than one out of six people would prefer to die younger than age 80

‘Undead’ genes come alive days after life ends

The funeral home has been offering “muerto parados,” or standing dead services

For older adults, having more or closer family members in one’s social network decreases his or her likelihood of death, but having a larger or closer group of friends does not, finds a new study.

Researchers found that the greater a person’s tolerance to pain (as measured by the wall-sit test), the greater the size of his or her “outer network”

Friends are as genetically similar as fourth cousins

New Study Shows Avoiding Sun Exposure Is As Dangerous As Smoking

Cold Does Not Increase Odds of Catching Cold [NY Times]

The present study shows that implanting an unlikely and unfamiliar idea in the mind can prevent participants from finding a more obvious one.

People have a general preference for reductive information, even when it is irrelevant to the logic of an explanation

The method of serial reproduction has revealed that the social transmission of information is characterized by the gradual transformation of the original message. Evidence of a negativity bias in the social transmission of information

The Effect of Redactions on Conspiracy Theory Beliefs

Many laboratory experiments show that people are often altruistic or care for fairness. We present data that reveal a darker side of human nature. We introduce the joy-of-destruction game. Two players each receive an endowment and simultaneously decide on how much of the other player’s endowment to destroy. Subjects play this game repeatedly. In one treatment, subjects can hide their destruction behind random destruction. In this treatment, money is destroyed in almost 40% of all decisions. We attribute this behavior to a visceral pleasure of being nasty. Under full information destruction is also observed, but rare. In this treatment, acts of destruction are followed by immediate retaliation. [Faculty of Economics and Management Magdeburg | PDF]

Is empathy the result of gut intuition or careful reasoning? Research suggests that, contrary to popular belief, the latter may be more the case.

On the psychological function of flags and logos: Group identity symbols increase perceived entitativity.

It has become common practice for retailers to personalize direct marketing efforts based on customer transaction histories as a tactic to increase sales. Targeted email offers featuring products in the same category as a customer’s previous purchases generate higher purchase rates. However, a targeted offer emphasizing familiar products could result in curtailed search for unadvertised products, as a closely matched offer weakens a customer’s incentives to search beyond the targeted items. In a field experiment using email offers sent by an online wine retailer, targeted offers resulted in decreased search activity on the retailer’s website. This effect is driven by a lower rate of search by customers who visit the site, rather than a lower incidence of search. [Management Science]

A marketing claim placed on a package is more believable than a marketing claim placed in an advertisement

Unskilled and unaware of it: How difficulties in recognizing one’s own incompetence lead to inflated self-assessments [PDF]

The HR Person at Your Next Job May Actually Be a Bot

When the robot approached lone individuals, they helped it enter the building in 19 percent of trials. When approached by the cookie-delivery robot, 76 percent of the time.

New online literary magazine dedicated to poems and prose written by AI

Artificially intelligent Russian robot escapes from research lab… again

Experiments teaching robots to track and ‘hunt’ other robots

The Humans Hiding Behind the Chatbots

Ticket bots  have years of experience beating you to the punch for premium seats. A fan’s guide to why you’re totally screwed.

Not using smartphones can improve productivity by 26%, says study

How long will you need to play to catch every Pokémon?

Mark Zuckerberg built a voice-controlled thermostat that doesn’t listen to his wife’s voice

How Silicon Valley helps spread the same sterile aesthetic across the world

Deutsche Bank is now worth just 17 billion euros ($18 billion). When the biggest bank in Europe’s biggest economy, with annual revenue of about 37 billion euros, is worth about the same as Snapchat — a messaging app that generated just $59 million of revenue last year — you know something’s wrong.

In 2012, hedge fund manager and venture capitalist Albert Hu was convicted of a financial fraud that stretched from Silicon Valley to Hong Kong. Today, he is locked up in the minimum security wing of Lompoc federal prison—inmate #131600-111—without access to the Internet. But, somehow, his bogus investment firm has come back to life. On the surface, Asenqua Ventures appears to be legitimate. It has a website. It has a working voicemail system and lists a Northern California office address. It has distributed multiple press releases via PRNewswire, which were then picked up by reputable media organizations. It is included in financial industry databases like Crunchbase, PitchBook, and S&P Capital IQ. Its senior managers have LinkedIn profiles. One of those profiles belonged to Stephen Adler, who earlier this week sent out hundreds of new Linkedin “connect” invitations (many of which were accepted). Among the recipients was Marty McMahon, a veteran executive recruiter who just felt that something was a bit off about Adler’s profile. So he did a Google reverse image search on Adler’s profile pic, and quickly learned that the headshot actually belonged to a San Diego real estate agent named Dan Becker. McMahon called Dan Becker, who he says was stunned to learn that his photo was being used by someone who he didn’t know. Then McMahon did another image search for the LinkedIn profile pic of Adler’s colleague, Michael Reed. This time it led him to Will Fagan, another San Diego realtor who often works with Dan Becker. [Fortune]

Someone Is Learning How to Take Down the Internet Recently, some of the major companies that provide the basic infrastructure that makes the Internet work have seen an increase in DDoS attacks against them. Moreover, they have seen a certain profile of attacks. These attacks are significantly larger than the ones they’re used to seeing. They last longer. They’re more sophisticated. And they look like probing. One week, the attack would start at a particular level of attack and slowly ramp up before stopping. The next week, it would start at that higher point and continue. And so on, along those lines, as if the attacker were looking for the exact point of failure. […] We don’t know where the attacks come from. The data I see suggests China, an assessment shared by the people I spoke with. On the other hand, it’s possible to disguise the country of origin for these sorts of attacks. The NSA, which has more surveillance in the Internet backbone than everyone else combined, probably has a better idea, but unless the US decides to make an international incident over this, we won’t see any attribution. [Bruce Schneier]

This Company Has Built a Profile on Every American Adult

Most insurance firms will probably argue as long as they can that there’s insufficient evidence that automated driving systems reduce accidents

A Beginner’s Guide To Understanding Convolutional Neural Networks

Contrary to what you’ve been told, frequent password changes can be counterproductive

Half Of People Click Anything Sent To Them

Smartphone Apps Are Now 50% of All U.S. Digital Media Time Spent

I have no idea if we’re going to have a quantum computer in every smart phone, or if we’re going to have quantum apps or quapps, that would allow us to communicate securely and find funky stuff using our quantum computers; that’s a tall order. It’s very likely that we’re going to have quantum microprocessors in our computers and smart phones that are performing specific tasks.

The longitudinal relationship between everyday sadism and the amount of violent video game play

Physicists are confronting their “nightmare scenario.” What does the absence of new particles suggest about how nature works?

There are no particles, there are only fields

Scientists Discover Light Could Exist in a Previously Unknown Form

What If We’re Wrong? History Suggests Everything Will Be Disproved

Biology textbooks tell us that lichens are alliances between two organisms—a fungus and an alga. They are wrong.

‘Sister Clones’ Of Dolly The Sheep Are Alive [Healthy aging of cloned sheep]

Which body part hurts the most when stung by a bee? A scientist put himself through a torturous experiment to find out

Mosquitoes didn’t bite chickens. They appeared to avoid them as well.

LG Electronics sells mosquito-repelling TV in India. The same technology, which was certified as effective by an independent laboratory near Chennai, India, has been used by LG in air conditioners and washing machines, the company said.

Researchers report that nepetalactone, the essential oil in catnip that gives the plant its characteristic odor, is about ten times more effective at repelling mosquitoes than DEET — the compound used in most commercial insect repellents.

Can Giraffe Swim?

Fast-Swimming Swordfish Automatically Lubricate Themselves

Just how dangerous is it to travel at 20% the speed of light?

Airborne chemicals in cinema air varied distinctively and reproducibly with time for a particular film, even in different screenings to different audiences.

What Happens to the Coins People Toss Into Fountains?

Law Enforcement Guide To Satanic Cults, 1994

How Rigged Are Stock Markets?: Evidence From Microsecond Timestamps

I trained rats to trade on Wall Street. Their performance was comparable to that of the world’s best fund managers.

Substituting multiple imputation for listwise deletion in political science […] in almost half of the studies, key results “disappear” (by conventional statistical standards) when reanalyzed.” [PDF]

Placebo Buttons [more]

A 25-year-old with no Trump ties raises $1 million by dangling ‘dinner’ with the GOP nominee

D. B. Cooper is a media epithet popularly used to refer to an unidentified man who hijacked a Boeing 727 aircraft in the airspace between Portland, Oregon, and Seattle, Washington, on November 24, 1971, extorted $200,000 in ransom (equivalent to $1,170,000 in 2015), and parachuted to an uncertain fate. Despite an extensive manhunt and protracted FBI investigation, the perpetrator has never been located or identified. […] He dictated his demands: $200,000 in “negotiable American currency”; four parachutes (two primary and two reserve); and a fuel truck standing by in Seattle to refuel the aircraft upon arrival. […] The FBI task force believes that Cooper was a careful and shrewd planner. He demanded four parachutes to force the assumption that he might compel one or more hostages to jump with him. […] Agents theorize that he took his alias from a popular Belgian comic book series of the 1970s featuring the fictional hero Dan Cooper, a Royal Canadian Air Force test pilot who took part in numerous heroic adventures, including parachuting. […] In February 1980 an eight-year-old boy named Brian Ingram, vacationing with his family on the Columbia River about 9 miles (14 km) downstream from Vancouver, Washington, and 20 miles (32 km) southwest of Ariel, uncovered three packets of the ransom cash, significantly disintegrated but still bundled in rubber bands, as he raked the sandy riverbank to build a campfire. FBI technicians confirmed that the money was indeed a portion of the ransom—two packets of 100 twenty-dollar bills each, and a third packet of 90, all arranged in the same order as when given to Cooper. [ Wikipedia]

The June 5 escape from Clinton was planned and executed by two particularly cunning and resourceful inmates, abetted by the willful, criminal conduct of a civilian employee of the prison’s tailor shops and assisted by the reckless actions of a veteran correction officer. The escape could not have occurred, however, except for longstanding breakdowns in basic security functions at Clinton and DOCCS executive management’s failure to identify and correct these deficiencies. […] Using pipes as hand- and foot-holds, Sweat and Matt descended three tiers through a narrow space behind their cells to the prison’s subterranean level. There they navigated a labyrinth of dimly lit tunnels and squeezed through a series of openings in walls and a steam pipe along a route they had prepared over the previous three months. When, at midnight, they emerged from a manhole onto a Village of Dannemora street a block outside the prison wall, Sweat and Matt had accomplished a remarkable feat: the first escape from the high-security section of Clinton in more than 100 years. […] In early 2015, the relationships deepened and Mitchell became an even more active participant in the escape plot, ultimately agreeing to join Sweat and Matt after their breakout and drive away with them. In addition to smuggling escape tools and maps, Mitchell agreed to be a conduit to obtain cash for Matt and gathered items to assist their flight, including guns and ammunition, camping gear, clothing, and a compass. Even as she professed her love for Sweat in notes she secretly sent him, Mitchell engaged in numerous sexual encounters with Matt in the tailor shop. These included kissing, genital fondling, and oral sex. […] The Inspector General is compelled to note that this investigation was made more difficult by a lack of full cooperation on the part of a number of Clinton staff, including executive management, civilian employees, and uniformed officers. Notwithstanding the unprecedented granting of immunity from criminal prosecution for most uniformed officers, employees provided testimony under oath that was incomplete and at times not credible. Among other claims, they testified they could not recall such information as the names of colleagues with whom they regularly worked, supervisors, or staff who had trained them. Several officers, testifying under oath within several weeks of the event, claimed not to remember their activities or observations on the night of the escape. Other employees claimed ignorance of security lapses that were longstanding and widely known. [State of New York, Office of the Inspector General]

We study 1) how the urban smellscape changes in time and space; 2) which emotions people share at places with specific smells; and 3) what is the color of a smell, if it exists

Philippines drugs war: The woman who kills dealers for a living

The writer started watching movies and television in fast forward to make his life more efficient. But acceleration — the latest twist in the millennia-old tradition of technology changing storytelling — also made viewing more pleasurable. Now there is no turning back.

7-Eleven Inc. and a tech startup called Flirtey have beaten Amazon to the punch in making the first drone delivery to a customer’s home in the U.S.

Photographer Files $1 Billion Suit Against Getty for Licensing Her Public Domain Images

Hijacking Banksy: using a contemporary art mystery to increase academic readership

Pricing Color Intensity and Lightness in Contemporary Art Auctions

Exclusive rights of Vantablack for artistic use have recently been given to the artist Anish Kapoor

A self-portrait of Warhol that is not by him

The first contemporary art exhibition for dogs

Performance Artist Arrested for Letting Strangers Fondle Her Private Parts

The Art of Fiction: Interview with Aldous Huxley [Thanks Tim]

When James Joyce & Marcel Proust Met in 1922, and Totally Bored Each Other

Doctors Examine Vincent Van Gogh

Who Is the Most Famous Person in the World, Statistically?

Jimmy Carter actually saw a UFO (he even filed the paperwork)

Wikiverse sources thousands of articles from Wikipedia and then generates a map where it showcases the countless connections and overlaps of information between each entry

Toilet Seat Scale Tells You How Much Weight Is Lost After You Take A Dump

A festival created a miniature mock-up of Berlin’s famed Berghain with the sole purpose of denying people at the door

Someone Set Up A Sweet Co-Working Space On A Bridge Over The 5 Freeway

List of selfie-related injuries and deaths [Thanks GG]

The Evolution of Bacteria on a “Mega-Plate” Petri Dish

The Poison Garden

Google Cardboard Plastic

Cartography Comparison: Google Maps and Apple Maps

Nailbot prints custom nail art

Invisible Art

Evangel’s Tanner Coleman (62) loses his helmet

Inside the Real-Life Database of America’s Firearms

3D-printed guns that evade metal detectors, lack serial numbers, are untraceable. Moreover, 3-D firearms makers would avoid background checking.

Amy Schumer commandeers a VF staffer’s Tinder account

Nihilistic Password Security Questions

Brooklyn Bar Menu Generator [Thanks Tim]

Previously by