Robert Sapolsky Explains the Biological Basis of Religiosity, and What It Shares in Common with OCD, Schizophrenia & Epilepsy

≡ Category: Biology, Religion, Science |4 Comments

Since the 19th century, thinkers like Ludwig Feuerbach, Friedrich Nietzsche, and Sigmund Freud have theorized religion as a strictly psychological and anthropological phenomenon born of the tendency of the human mind to project its contents out into the heavens.

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This is Your Brain on Jazz Improvisation: The Neuroscience of Creativity

≡ Category: Biology, Music, Technology, TED Talks |Leave a Comment

It’s clear that amateur saxophonist and Johns Hopkins surgeon Charles Limb has an abiding interest in the neuroscience of creativity.
He’s also an unabashed fanboy. I’ll bet the spirit of scientific inquiry is not the only motivating factor behind this jazz fan’s experiments on jazz improvisers.

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16,000 Pages of Charles Darwin’s Writing on Evolution Now Digitized and Available Online

≡ Category: Archives, Biology, History, Science |2 Comments

The Darwinian theory of evolution is an amazing scientific idea that seems, at least to a layperson like me, to meet all the criteria for what scientists like Ian Glynn praise highly as “elegance”—all of them perhaps except one: Simplicity.

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Shelf Life: American Museum of Natural History Creates New Video Series on Its 33 Million Artifacts

≡ Category: Biology, History, Museums, Science, Video - Science |Leave a Comment

I once spent a summer as a security guard at the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. A wonderful place to visit, but my workday experience proved dreadfully dull.

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The Ebola Virus Explained with Animated Video

≡ Category: Biology |Leave a Comment

There’s just one small mention of the Ebola virus on the New York Times homepage right now. And it’s buried halfway down the page — which means that, no longer in panic mode, we can take a cool, calm and collected look at this virus called Ebola.

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How to Dance Your Dissertation: See the Winning Video in the 2014 “Dance Your PhD” Contest

≡ Category: Biology, Dance |Leave a Comment

We’ve seen how modern dance can explain key concepts in statistics (e.g. correlation and sampling error). So why couldn’t dance also illustrate the conclusions of a plant biology doctoral dissertation?
Uma Nagendra, a graduate student at the University of Georgia, has just won the 2014 edition of the “Dance Your Ph.D.

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New Animated Web Series Makes the Theory of Evolution Easy to Understand

≡ Category: Biology, Education, K-12, Science |Leave a Comment

When it comes to matters of broad scientific consensus, I’m generally inclined to offer provisional assent.

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Stanford’s Robert Sapolsky Demystifies Depression

≡ Category: Biology, Life |2 Comments

We know that depression affects people from all walks of life. Rich. Poor. Celebs. Ordinary Joes. Young. Old. But, somehow after the death of Robin Williams, there’s a renewed focus on depression, and my mind turned immediately to a lecture we featured on the site way back in 2009.

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Playing an Instrument Is a Great Workout For Your Brain: New Animation Explains Why

≡ Category: Animation, Biology, Music, Science |4 Comments

Get me a piano teacher, stat!
When I was a child, my father, enchanted by the notion that I might someday provide live piano accompaniment to his evening cocktails, signed me up for lessons with a mild-mannered widow who—if memory serves—charged 50¢ an hour.

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What Does the Spleen Do? A Music Video Starring Harvard School of Medicine’s Class of 2016

≡ Category: Biology, Comedy, Harvard, K-12, Science |Leave a Comment

According to Harvard Medical School’s Admissions department, “to study medicine at Harvard is to prepare to play a leading role” in the “quest to improve the human condition.

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