Richard ONeill

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Reflecting on mirror neurons

The discovery of mirror neurons has been touted as one of the most important of modern neuroscience, but what exactly are these cells, and should you believe the hype?<p><i>Chapter 11 of my book, 50 Human Brain Ideas You Really Need to Know. Here's the introduction to the book, and my post about the most</i> …

Scientists Are Scary Close To Controlling Our Memories And Brains With Computers

There are already thought-controlled gadgets and smart phone apps. But recently, a group of scientists at MIT took brain-computer interactions to a whole new level.<p>While they weren't able to create memories from scratch, they were able to associate different feelings to neutral memories in mice. In …

Monkeys

'Memory Pinball' And Other Reasons You Need A Nap

We spend about one-third of our lives sleeping, but much of that function remains a mystery. <i>Weekend Edition Sunday</i> is asking some pretty fundamental, yet complicated, questions about why we do it and why we can't seem to get more of it.<p>Dr. Matthew Walker says the question of why we sleep remains …

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Newborn babies may be more developed than we think

My baby could not look more like a subject in a laboratory experiment. Wearing a soft white skullcap attached by long wires to an EEG machine measuring his brain activity, he is also surrounded by computer equipment and fussing researchers at University College London. "Hopefully you'll be …

Birth Of Memory: Why Kids Forget What Happened Before Age 7

Recently, my nearly-4-year-old niece suffered the kind of childhood accident every parent dreads: she fell off her bike and broke a front tooth high above the gum line. The resulting pain and eventual extraction were a harrowing experience for her parents, but fortunately the little girl emerged …

8 Ways Tech Has Completely Rewired Our Brains

Technology has altered human physiology. It makes us think differently, feel differently, even dream differently. It affects our memory, attention …

How Trauma Affects The Brain Of A Learner

Our public media colleagues over at KPCC, Southern California Public Radio, have a fascinating two-part report on the efforts of schools in the Los Angeles area to address the effects of "toxic stress" on student learning.<p>"As researchers work to solve one of the most persistent problems in public …

Learning a second language at any age may slow the brain's decline

Bilingual education in schools has long been a political hot potato -- it was banned in California by a 1998 ballot measure, which the state Senate is now asking voters to repeal. But politics aside, there's an increasing amount of scientific support for the benefits of knowing (at least) two …

On campus MIT in Cambridge. #streetphotography #onassignment #MIT

Climate CoLab

Climate CoLab has teamed up with Solve CoLab to run this contest. To participate, click "OK" below.When you save your proposal, you'll be able to see …

Why MIT Thinks You (Yes, You!) Can Solve Climate Change

Climate change: We all know it's a huge problem, and most of us want something done about it. Unfortunately, nation-state level approaches haven't made any significant headway.<p>According to Thomas W. Malone, Robert Laubacher, and Laur Fisher of the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence, "top-down …

1943 ... Goodyear aircraft carrier!

A long exposure image of embers flying off burnt out trees following the wind driven wildfire in the mountain area near Rancho Cucamonga, Southern California. (Stuart Palley—EPA) To see more of @TIME's best photos of the week visit time.com

What Would Happen If Everyone In The World Gave Up Meat

People generally like eating meat—when poor people start making more money, they almost invariably start buying more meat.<p>As the population grows and eats more animal products, the consequences for climate change, pollution, and land use could be catastrophic.<p>Attempts to reduce meat consumption …

Agriculture

Why Google doesn’t care about college degrees, in 5 quotes

Google isn’t big on college degrees, although the search giant is inundated with applicants touting perfect GPAs from Ivy League schools.<p>Google’s chairman and head of hiring, Laszlo Bock, has given a few insights in the <i>New York Times</i> on how he sorts through a multitude of bright applicants.<p>The …

Dad Films His Daughter Growing Up Over 14 Years in 4 Minutes

In a gorgeous display of fatherly love, Frans Hofmeester started filming his baby girl Lotte in the autumn 1999 and continued for a full 14 …

13 Ways For Feminists To Close The Confidence Gap

In “The Confidence Gap,” published recently in <i>The Atlantic</i>, authors Katty Kay and Claire Shipman write at length about how women should not fear …

Same Color Optical Illusion

How are all of you doing out there today? I’m back with a <b>new optical illusion</b> for all of you today, but I have to admit that I’m a little bit …

10 Strategies Quick Learners Use To Pick Up Anything

We need to get good at it, since the tools we use to do our jobs are changing every year.<p>In a recent Quora thread, users answered the question: What learning strategies do people who are "quick learners" follow? We've outlined some of the best ideas for for optimizing the learning process, along …

Harvard Business School

9 Gorgeously Illustrated Quotes From Great Thinkers

Lisa Congdon whimsically illustrates and hand-letters expressions from Marie Curie to Abraham Lincoln.<p>“I love quotations because it is a joy to find thoughts one might have, beautifully expressed with much authority by someone recognized wiser than oneself,” Marlene Dietrich, a wise woman with much …

Books