Både kråkfåglar och människoapor betraktas som intelligenta. Men hur går egentligen tänkandet till? Idag handlar Vetandets värld om ett nytt forskningsprojekt som vill jämföra hur olika djur tänker. I programmet möter vi kognitionsforskaren Mathias Osvath och råkan Pluto.
news.bbc.co.uk/earth/hi/earth_news/newsid_8962000/8962747.stm, posted 2010 by peter in cognition msm nature science
Often, chimps acquire new talents by trial and error. For example, when trying to crack nuts, they might strike one stone onto an anvil stone and miss the nuts all together. Or they might use their hands to strike the nut, which is ineffective. But the Bossou chips couldn't have learned how to deactivate the snares this way, as one mistake could be fatal.
"The observations indicate that chimpanzees can learn some manners without trial and error," says Mr Ohashi.
The researchers speculate that the chimps may have learnt how the snares work by observing them over time, and this information has been passed down generations.
Caffeine is the most widely used stimulant in the world, but few use it to maximal advantage. Get optimally wired with these tips.
www.nytimes.com/2010/06/07/technology/07brain.html, posted 2010 by peter in cognition communication health
Scientists say juggling e-mail, phone calls and other incoming information can change how people think and behave. They say our ability to focus is being undermined by bursts of information.
www.livescience.com/health/brain-multitasking-limit-100415.html, posted 2010 by peter in cognition msm science toread
For those who find it tough to juggle more than a couple things at once, don't despair. The brain is set up to manage two tasks, but not more, a new study suggests.
That's because, when faced with two tasks, a part of the brain known as the medial prefrontal cortex (MFC) divides so that half of the region focuses on one task and the other half on the other task. This division of labor allows a person to keep track of two tasks pretty readily, but if you throw in a third, things get a bit muddled.
www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=124008307&ft=1&f=1007&sc=YahooNews, posted 2010 by peter in cognition environment science toread
o social scientist and lawyer Don Braman, it's not surprising that two people can disagree so strongly over science. Braman is on the faculty at George Washington University and part of The Cultural Cognition Project, a group of scholars who study how cultural values shape public perceptions and policy beliefs.
"People tend to conform their factual beliefs to ones that are consistent with their cultural outlook, their world view," Braman says.
A respected Swiss scientist, Conrad Gessner, might have been the first to raise the alarm about the effects of information overload. In a landmark book, he described how the modern world overwhelmed people with data and that this overabundance was both "confusing and harmful" to the mind. [...] It's worth noting that Gessner, for his part, never once used e-mail and was completely ignorant about computers. That's not because he was a technophobe but because he died in 1565. His warnings referred to the seemingly unmanageable flood of information unleashed by the printing press.
To date, studies suggest there is no consistent evidence that the Internet causes mental problems. If anything, the data show that people who use social networking sites actually tend to have better offline social lives, while those who play computer games are better than nongamers at absorbing and reacting to information with no loss of accuracy or increased impulsiveness.
Technology has always been used as a memory aid, of course, but in past millenia, scratching on a clay tablet, writing with a fountain pen, and snapping a digital photo have all required an act of will. Humans had to choose what they would remember.
Now, in an age of ever-cheaper storage, the data committed to machine memory requires an act of will to delete. Storage is now so cheap, in fact, that it requires more effort to cull an e-mail inbox or photo gallery than it does to simply hold on to everything.
To get back to a default state of forgetfulness, Mayer-Schönberger offers an intriguing proposal: find simple ways to give data an expiration date.
Having people tag images by hand is an onerous task. Shenoy and Tan of Microsoft Research developed a way to tag images automatically by reading people’s brain scans while they look at images. The people did not even have to specifically think about trying to tag the image; they merely had to passively observe it.
Griddlers are logic puzzles that use number clues around a grid to create an image.