El otro blog para cosas más serias

El otro blog para cosas más serias
El otro blog para cosas más serias

sábado, 10 de abril de 2010


  • Por qué se ha reducido la delincuencia: "increases in prescriptions for psychiatric drugs  are associated with decreases in violent crime, with the largest impacts associated with new generation antidepressants and stimulants"
  • The consensus view among neo-Darwinians continues to be that evolution is random variation plus structured environmental filtering, but it seems ..(hay) a large and varied selection of non-environmental constraints on trait transmission. They include constraints imposed "from below" by physics and chemistry, that is, from molecular interactions upwards, through genes, chromosomes, cells, tissues and organisms. And constraints imposed "from above" by universal principles of phenotypic form and self-organisation - that is, through the minimum energy expenditure, shortest paths, optimal packing and so on, down to the morphology and structure of organisms.Pigs don't have wings, but that's not because winged pigs once lost out to wingless ones. And it's not because the pigs that lacked wings were more fertile than the pigs that had them. There never were any winged pigs because there's no place on pigs for the wings to go. This isn't environmental filtering, it's just physiological and developmental mechanics.
  • "Mischel pioneered a delayed gratification protocol in which four-year olds were given a choice between eating one marshmallow right away or waiting 15 minutes and getting two marshmallows. It later turned out that the ability to delay gratification as a little kid was a powerfully predictive test, and that kids who could delay for longer scored higher on the SAT, had fewer disciplinary problems and responded better to stressful situations.In other words, delayed gratification isn't really about gritting our teeth or exerting willpower: it's about controlling the spotlight of attention.... it's about having more precise control over what's in working memory...As William James famously wrote, "Everyone knows what attention is...It implies withdrawal from some things in order to deal effectively with others.")
  • El artículo más citado en estos días sobre el envejecimiento de la población mundial
    • "Of all the people in human history who ever reached the age of 65, half are alive now"
    • Las buenas noticias: :  Far from being a weight round society's neck, many of them (de los viejos) look like a new human resource waiting to be tapped. ...They are often more valuable than the young workers the demographers imagine are supporting them:  "there is evidence that companies with a decent proportion of older workers are more productive than those addicted to youth 
    • Think what it could mean when the Edisons and Einsteins of the future, the doctors and technicians, the artists and engineers, have 20 or 30 more years to give us" (Estaba pensando, quizá mejor, en los Mozarts que murieron muy jóvenes)... pero more than 70% of the scientists who have ever lived are alive today 

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