April 7, 2011

Why Did Martin Rees Win the Templeton Prize?
In an appreciation of work bridging science and philosophy—or a canny attempt to buy credibility, depending on whom you ask—the controversial Templeton Foundation has awarded its 1.6 million dollar annual prize to an agnostic. (Sara Reardon, ScienceInsider)

We’ll Hurt Someone for Money—Even Though We Say We Wouldn’t
When faced with a thorny moral dilemma, what people say they would do and what people actually do are two very different things, a new study finds. In a hypothetical scenario, most people said they would never subject another person to a painful electric shock, just to make a little bit of money. But for people given a real-world choice, the sparks flew. (Laura Sanders, Science News)

Narcissist + Narcissist = Creativity
The experimenters found that having two narcissists in a group produced more creative results than a group with none because their competitiveness sparked more brainstorming. But when more than two narcissists were in a group, the opposite happened—hyper­competitiveness scuttled the group’s productivity. (David DiSalvo, Scientific American Mind)

How Politicians Have (Mis)interpreted the Ideas of Positive Psychology
In a new interview, Martin Seligman says he believes his ideas have been oversimplified, dumbed down to something he dismisses as “happyology”—the simple pursuit of a cheerful mood. (Tim Edwards, The First Post)

First Look at the Next Mars Rover
Photographer Joseph Linaschke visited on behalf of Boing Boing and shot this series of photos. (Xeni Jardin)

Category: Field Notes

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