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PSYlent: 6th January 2008

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Here is the next PSYlent, the weekly overview of those stories that I think are pretty interesting in psychology but don’t really apply to OCR. Seems a shame to miss out on them just because I can’t get them to fit into the specifications. So, here are those studies that would have been without a voice on PsychBLOG; or as I’m going to call them: PSYlent!

Welcome to 2008! I hope that you’ve all had a very restful and relaxing break over the Christmas time (students among you I hope you’ve been busy revising for any exams that you have this month). Here’s a bumper PSYlent for you to start the year off … some interesting, weird and wonderful stories from around the web.

How many blondes does it take …
Blondes have the potential to make people act in a dumber way, because they mimic the unconscious stereotype of the dumb blonde. DrX has the story.

Sticking to the topic of dumb or irrational things
Jeremy D over at PsyBlog has is obsessed with why we do dumb or irrational thing and has collated 10 wonderful psychological studies.

Beat the ‘brain drain’
Those of us who feel we are busy all the time can experience burn out, exhaustion and fatigue from spending long periods of time in focused concentration. If that’s you pop over to Life Hacker to see how to defeat the drain.

Chimps like us?
Chimps often seem so much like us. Researchers at the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Germany have been trying to determine which skills differentiate us from our primate relatives.

Ever wanted to play Dr?
Now’s your chance: Edheads.org has two virtual surgery procedures on offer – hip replacement and knee replacement – all without the gore! Hat-tip to Healthbolt.

Thanks!
Particularly at this time of year, we are often reminded that it is better to give than receive but according to latest research into positive psychology, receiving can be just as good for the soul providing you remember to say thanks. Thanks to Exploring Psychology for this story.

What is “The Self”?
“The self” is one of the most challenging and interesting issues in philosophy of mind and Cognitive Science. We all have a phenomenal conscious feeling that our experiences are unified into one identity – a self; that our experiences belong to someone. However what this self actually is or whether it actually exists is open to debate.

Finally a few other links to have a look at: The Brain from top-to-bottom and The Manipulation of Human Behavior.

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