Alex and I wrote a review of the book Attention: Philosophical and Psychological Essays (Mole, Smithies, & Wu, eds.) for Philosophy in Review, an open access journal. It was published online today here.
Here’s a TEDx talk from our collaborator at UC Riverside, Sara Mednick. We’ve been working with Sara and her lab to investigate the effects of daytime napping on attention.
Portraits of European Neuroscientists is a lovely new website from perceptual psychologist Nick Wade, visual neurophysiologist Marco Piccolino and web designer Adrian Simmons. The site pairs concise biographies with portraits that reflect a scientist’s contribution to the field. Some of my favourites—which also include this portrait of Pearson—are Wheatstone, Brücke and Panum. This is a particularly good resource for anyone teaching psychology or neuroscience, but it’s worth a good look in any case.
In a Smithsonian article currently doing the rounds (Teller reveals his secrets), magician Teller gives his ideas on how magicians manipulate the mind. This led me to another great article that appeared a couple of years ago in Wired on the same theme. And that led me to Stephen Macknik and Susana Martinez-Conde‘s paper in Nature Reviews Neuroscience, which counts among its authors Teller, James Randi, Mac King, Apollo Robbins and Johnny Thompson. Attention and awareness in stage magic: turning tricks into research can be found here.
Here’s Paul Root Wolpe‘s TED talk, It’s time to question bioengineering. Some important ideas to kick off the weekend.
Ramesh Raskar‘s team at MIT Media Lab have built a camera capable of capturing light trajectories at a trillion frames per second. Which is relatively fast. Jared Newman at Time’s Techland points out that if it were slowed to a more conventional frame rate of around 30 fps, you would need an entire lifetime to watch just a tenth of a second of this footage.
A family friend put me on to the great Sixty Symbols (cheers, Cam)—a collection of videos featuring academics at the University of Nottingham. Each one is focused on a symbol with some important meaning in physics: γ links to a five-minute explanation of the Lorenz factor and time dilation; ψ to ten minutes on the wave function. Here’s Laurence Eaves and Mark Fromhold on chaos and the butterfly effect.
When you’re done, there’s also a chemistry sister site, The Periodic Table of Videos.