Blog Profile / Mind Hacks

Filed Under:Academics / Neuroscience
Posts on Regator:1269
Posts / Week:2.5
Archived Since:March 17, 2008

Blog Post Archive

Suzanne Corkin has left the building

Neuropsychologist Suzanne Corkin, most well known for her work with profoundly amnesic patient HM, has passed away and The New York Times has a fitting obituary and tribute. Although Corkin did a range of work on memory, including testing...Show More Summary

Twenty years, one Saturday

If you’re in the UK this Saturday, London’s Institute of Cognitive Neuroscience is celebrating 20 years of peering into the brain with an all-day £5 conference that gathers leading researchers to cover everything from the neuroscience of cannabis to embodied cognition. Show More Summary

The cognitive science of how to study

Researchers from the Bjork Learning and Forgetting Lab at UCLA have created a fantastic video on the cognitive science of how to study. Despite the fact that we now know loads about what makes for optimal learning, it’s rarely applied by students who are trying to learn a subject or ace a test. This is … Continue reading "The cognitive science of how to study"

Spike activity 10-06-2016

Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news: The New York Times has a fascinating piece on the online community of people who believe they are being ‘gang stalked’. Completely destroy the immune system with chemotherapy and rebuild it with stem cells. Show More Summary

Cultures of mental distress

BBC Radio 4 is currently running a fascinating four-part series called The Borders of Sanity on the interaction between culture and mental illness. It’s been put together by cultural historian Christopher Harding and takes an in-depth...Show More Summary

The mechanics of subtle discrimination: measuring ‘microaggresson’

Many people don’t even realise that they are discriminating based on race or gender. And they won’t believe that their unconscious actions have consequences until they see scientific evidence. Here it is. The country in which I live has laws forbidding discrimination on the grounds of ethnicity, religion, sexuality or sex. Show More Summary

Sleight of mind in fMRI

I’ve written a piece for the BPS Research Digest about a fascinating study that caused people to feel their thoughts were being controlled by outside forces. It’s a psychologically intriguing study because it used the psychologyShow More Summary

Spike activity 24-06-2016

Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news: Why do some children thrive in adult life despite a background of violence and neglect? Fascinating piece from Mosaic. Scientific American asks with the flood of neuroscience PhDs,...Show More Summary

A podcast on drugs

If you’re a podcast addict, you could no worse than checking out Say Why to Drugs an excellent new show that covers the science behind a different recreational drug each week. The podcast is with psychologist and drugs researcher Suzi Gage and rhyme-smith Scroobius Pip, better known for his banging tunes. They make for a … Continue reading "A podcast on drugs"

The science of urban paranoia

I’ve got an article in The Atlantic on how paranoia and psychosis are more common in cities and why the quest to explain the ‘urban psychosis effect’ is reshaping psychiatry. The more urban your neighbourhood, the higher the rate...Show More Summary

Critical mental health has a brain problem

A common critical refrain in mental health is that explaining mental health problems in terms of a ‘brain disorder’ strips meaning from the experience, humanity from the individual, and is potentially demeaning. But this only holds true...Show More Summary

More complicated than it looks

Graffiti found this morning in Medellín which seems to uncannily illustrate the practice of cognitive science. Found on Carrera 63A (‘La Paralela’) by the metro station Acevedo. I’ve found myself in many risky situations in Colombia but few compare to running out into two lane traffic to try and take this photo.

Why you forget what you came for when you enter the room

Forgetting why you entered a room is called the “Doorway Effect”, and it may reveal as much about the strengths of human memory, as it does the weaknesses, says psychologist Tom Stafford. We’ve all done it. Run upstairs to get your keys, but forget that it is them you’re looking for once you get to […]

Genetics is rarely just about genes

If you want a crystal clear introduction to the role genetics can play in human nature, you can’t do much better than an article in The Guardian’s Sifting the Evidence blog by epidemiologist Marcus Munafo. It’s been giving a slightly distracting title – but ignore that – and just read the main text. Are we […]

3 salvoes in the reproducibility crisis

The reproducibility crisis in Psychology rumbles on. For the uninitiated, this is the general brouhaha we’re having over how reliable published psychological research is. I wrote a piece on this in 2013, which now sounds a little complacent, and unnecessarily focussed on just one area of psychology, given the extent of the problems since uncovered […]

The death of the soul has been greatly exaggerated

I’ve got a piece in today’s Observer looking back on 20 years since novelist Tom Wolfe wrote a landmark article that threw open the doors on how the new science of cognitive neuroscience was challenging the notion of the self. Exactly 20 years ago, Tom Wolfe wrote one of the most influential articles in neuroscience. […]

Spike activity 12-02-2016

Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news: Don’t tase me bro! Because it’ll cause short term cognitive impairment which may affect my ability to respond correctly under police interview. Important research from Drexel. Mosaic has an interesting piece on hacking the placebo response and associative learning to improve medical treatments. Your […]

A quartet of complementary brain books

Last night I taught a two hour class called ‘Navigating Neuroscience’ for the Guardian Masterclass series and I had the interesting challenge of coming up with a two hour course on some key concepts to help people make better sense of brain science, how it’s discussed, and its changing place in society. As part of […]

Spike activity 22-01-2016

Quick links from the past week in mind and brain news: The New Yorker covers the shifting sands of autism in light of recent books that have rethought the history of the condition. Brian Resnick at Vox asked twenty psych researchers: What do you hate about science journalism? Lots of good stuff. Science reports big […]

World’s stupidest drugs laws enacted by Britain

Yesterday, the UK Parliament approved the Psychoactive Drugs Bill which will become law in April. New Scientist pulls no punches in an uncharacteristically direct article and tells it like it is: It’s official – the UK ban on legal highs that will begin in April is going to be one of the stupidest, most dangerous […]

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