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Mindful : June 2018
PODCASTS INVISIBILIA Episode: Pt.I: Emotions / Pt.II: High Voltage This wonderful if offbeat podcast (its title is Latin for “invisible things”) fuses science with narrative storytelling. These episodes investigate psychologist Dr. Lisa Feldman Barrett’s case that how we conceptualize (and deal with) emotions is totally backward: “Emotions aren’t a reaction to the world; they actually construct the world.” This is weighed against some true, truly weird stories: Traumatized by a car crash, a man sues who he crashed into—the parents of the child he killed (!). An anthropologist discovers a “new” emotion among a head-hunting tribe in the Philippines. And a woman struggles to find love, due to a seemingly involuntar y reflex. QUIRKS & QUARKS Episode: Friends share more than interests. Their brains are similar, too Dr. Carolyn Parkinson, a psychological researcher at UCLA, led a study that interviewed 300 students to learn the degrees of friendship or distance they had to others within the group. Then, students watched an assortment of video clips while the researchers took fMRI scans of their brains. It turned out that how close the students were to one another could be predicted by the similarity of their neural responses to the videos. This leaves open the question of whether we gravitate toward others who already see and process the world similarly, or if we become friends first and, through unknown mechanisms, our mental patterns converge over time. FREAKONOMICS RADIO Episode: Here’s Why All Your Projects Are Always Late—and What to Do About It Why do we procrastinate—and why, nevertheless, can we always convince ourselves that we won’t next time? Experts weigh in, from psychology and neuroscience to software design and New York City’s Second Avenue subway that took 50 years to start building. We fall victim to the planning fallacy, which involves our “optimism bias”—believing the grass is greener in the future—and the fact that most of us don’t love data integration. The key to more accurate expectations? “Use data instead of human judgment.” Artificial intelligence: 1; people: 0. June 2018 mindful 77 reviews