Weekender wasn’t bad at math, but over the years we seem to have gotten worse somehow.
Conversely, though, we’re not as bad at languagey stuff, including making up words like “languagey”. All this, according to a study by Hebrew University researchers, located unsurprisingly in Israel, the unconscious mind works much harder than anyone first thought.
They used a technique called continuous flash suppression, which, according to Inside Terchnology, involves shining “rapidly changing series of colourful patterns to just one of the subject’s eyes. The bright patterns dominate the subject’s awareness to such an extent that when researchers show less flashy material to the other eye (like words or equations), it takes several seconds before the brain consciously registers it”.
Scientists called it “a game changer in the study of the unconscious, because unlike all previous methods, it gives unconscious processes ample time to engage with and operate on subliminal stimuli.”
The speed of thought was measured by how fast nonsense phrases like “I ironed coffee” came into the conscious realm. As the nonsensical phrases popped sooner, the researchers hypothesize that the unconscious brain processed the sentence, found it surprising and odd, and quickly passed it along to the conscious brain for further examination. Equations were shown too quickly to be consciously solved.
Motorhead vs Mozart
Some fairly obvious research was also published this week by the University of Rochester Medical Center in New York on what constitutes “coolness”.
“Coolness has really two faces,” researcher Ilan Dar-Nimrod said.
“One is the face of someone like Miles Davis, the other is the face of a person who is considered to be confident and successful and attractive but doesn’t have much of the edginess.”
So now we know. Thanks, science, for sorting that one out. More daftness was discovered by the Addiction Info Switzerland Research Institute, who, with a straight face, published a study that concluded that drinking in the house before a night out led to more booze, drugs and sex for kids in college. Next, they hope to prove that water is wet.
The journal, Jeuron, published a study of macaque monkeys playing two separate games, one based on speed and one on accuracy. Turns out that speed stress and accuracy stress produce different brain processes – meaning that when you’re pressured into doing things too fast, you are likely to be inaccurate. Take heed, Weekender’s bosses!
Also, play your dogs classical music. It chills them out, says Colorado State University’s latest research. Apparently, too, heavy metal caused anxiety and unrest, a fact which the bands would be delighted no doubt to hear.