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Olivia Goldhill

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A Study Suggests Mindfulness Is Not Quite As Miraculous As We’ve Been Led To Believe

April 25, 2016 Mindfulness is having a moment. The practice, which involves consciously focusing on and recognizing your thoughts and emotions, has been found to reduce stress, improve grades, increase compassion, aid weight loss, and bolster resilience. Above all, mindfulness is considered a strong option for treating depression. But a paper published this...

150 Years Ago, a Renowned Philosopher Called Busyness the Sign of an Unhappy Person

April 19, 2016 If you’re reading this on your phone, rushing to the subway while hunting for your headphones, then you need to stop. At least, that’s what Søren Kierkegaard, the Danish philosopher who lived at the beginning of the 19th century, would advise. Last week, brainpickings pointed out just how relevant Kierkegaard’s...

These New Solar Panels Can Create Electricity from Raindrops

April 11, 2016 FROM NEXTGOV arrow Scientists in China are developing a solar panel that could be used to generate power from an unlikely source—rain. Graphene, which consists of just a single layer of carbon atoms arranged in a honeycomb structure, was discovered a decade ago and has been put to several scientific uses. Previous work...

After 35 Years, the Man Who Shot Ronald Reagan Is Close to Being Free

April 4, 2016 In 1981, 35 years ago this week, John Hinckley Jr. attempted to assassinate President Reagan in an effort to impress actress Jodie Foster. He began shooting from just 10 feet away, leaving Reagan with abullet in his lung and three others with injuries. Press secretary James Brady suffered brain damage...

Scientists Believe Coffee Can Help Protect From Liver Disease

February 22, 2016 There are many health-related drawbacks associated with drinking too much coffee, such as insomnia and irritable bowel syndrome, but scientists believe they’ve uncovered a positive effect. Daily cups of coffee are linked with a reduced risk of cirrhosis liver disease, according to a recently published meta-analysis of nine previous studies....

Is Imposter Syndrome a Sign of Greatness?

February 2, 2016 Some of the most successful people in history have suffered from secret fear that they’re terrible at their jobs. “I am not a writer. I’ve been fooling myself and other people,” John Steinbeck wrote in his diary in 1938. “I always feel like something of an impostor. I don’t know...

Psychologists Have Built a Mathematical Model for Selfishness

January 25, 2016 Ever wonder why some people have a tendency to be nice—even in situations where it costs them—while others are constantly out for themselves? Psychologists from Yale University have built a formal mathematical model, combining game theory with ideas from behavioral economics, to show how humans evolved to develop two distinct...

Guess Which 2016 Candidate Features in an Islamist Terrorist Recruitment Video

January 4, 2016 Soundbites from Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump have been included in a recruitment film released by Islamist militant group al-Shabaab, an affiliate of al-Qaeda based in Somalia. Trump’s call to ban all Muslims from entering the US, which was met with cheers at his South Carolina rally in December, is...

African Extremist Group Al-Shebab Shows Trump in Recruitment Video

January 3, 2016 Soundbites from Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump have been included in a recruitment film released by Islamist militant group al-Shabaab, an affiliate of al-Qaeda based in Somalia. Trump’s call to ban all Muslims from entering the US, which was met with cheers at his South Carolina rally in December, is...

Well-Being is a Network of Characteristics We Can Build For Ourselves, Argues a Philosopher

December 22, 2015 Everyone wants a good life, but half the battle is figuring out just what that entails. Should we aim for professional success, romantic relationships, or exciting experiences? Michael Bishop, philosophy professor at Florida State University and author of recently published book The Good Life, argues that we should forget about...