Monday, September 24, 2007

Speedlinking 9/24/07

Quote of the day:

"The most erroneous stories are those we think we know best - and therefore never scrutinize or question."
~ Stephen Jay Gould

Image of the day:

~ Pre-workouts and muscle gain -- "So be sure your pre-workout nutrition is inline with your goals before heading to the gym."
~ Staggered Ab Training -- "Finally, an ab training program that's excuse proof! No more throwing in a couple of pathetic, obligatory crunches at the end of a workout. And the answer was staring you in the face the whole time."
~ Four Weeks To Gargantuan Growth With German Volume Training -- "Bodybuilders have used many creative training techniques to push past halted muscle growth. Many IFBB pro bodybuilders use German Volume Training to get past this sticking point; explanation of GVT and sample program follow!" This is an incredibly high-volume program -- should only be done short term and if all other factors are dialed in.
~ The Illusion Of Variety -- "Often, it's more important to create the illusion of variety in your training, as opposed to actual variety." Good points.
~ The Texas Method: Strength Training for Intermediate Lifters -- "The Texas Method is the logical next step after the Beginner Strength Training Program II. I’ve followed the Texas Method for several months this year with great success. Here’s how the program works."
~ Study: Acupuncture Works for Back Pain -- "Fake acupuncture works nearly as well as the real thing for low back pain, and either kind performs much better than usual care, German researchers have found...."
~ Blocking Necrosis: Pathway To Cell Death Redefined In Landmark Study -- "A new study led by investigators from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine demonstrates that the process of necrosis, long thought to be a chaotic, irreversible pathway to cell death, may actually be triggered as part of a regulated response to stress by a powerful protein, SRP-6, that can potentially halt necrosis in its path."
~ Calcium better from food -- "Calcium-rich foods do much more to strengthen your bones than calcium supplements alone." Old info, but useful.
~ Lack of sleep may be deadly, research shows -- "People who do not get enough sleep are more than twice as likely to die of heart disease, according to a large British study released on Monday."

~ Prospective Memory: More Retrospective Among Children? [Developing Intelligence] -- "What processes allow us to execute delayed intentions? This ability, known as prospective memory, is often considered to have two constituent parts: a prospective component which involves forming the intention and possibly maintaining it until action execution, and a retrospective component which involves retrieving this intention, if that intention is not successfully and continuously maintained until the moment of action execution."
~ Neuroeconomics in the Annual Review of Psychology -- "A great team of (neuro) economists/psychologists, George Loewenstein, Scott Rick and Jonathan Cohen, wrote an extensive review paper about neuroeconomics for the 2008 Annual Review of Psychology. It presents all important research papers, discusses how neuroeconomics shed light--from a psychological and economic point of view--on decision-making under risk and uncertainty, intertemporal choice, and social decision making and, finally, show how this research can contribute to psychology."
~ How to Take a Compliment -- "A surprisingly large number of people do not know how to take a compliment. There’s something in our mind-set that says we cannot possibly deserve positive feedback and therefore anyone who pays us a compliment must be either lying, misguided, or feeling sorry for us. This is that little extra-critical voice in our heads, externalized and projected onto others; as if it weren’t enough that we undermine ourselves, we force others to undermine us too."
~ The magic ingredient for a fulfilling life is . . . -- "I don’t advocate living more slowly for the sake of it. If you want to enjoy life, you need to go slow because that’s what it takes. Strip away enough time and, instead of the image I started this article with, you’re left with a picture on a calendar, a ring tone on your cellphone, and a quick fumble behind the door. The stuff of great experiences? I don’t think so."
~ Relaxation: Engaging Your System -- "We have all heard of the fight-flight response, the system which kicks in automatically when we perceive danger. Less commonly known are the neural circuits triggered by social contact that calm the heart, relax the gut, and switch off fear."
~ 7 Tips for Resolving Conflicts Quickly and Peacefully -- "Everyone has to deal with difficult people, whether they are argumentative, abusive, stubborn, or combative. The question is, how can you assert your own rights without creating an unnecessary incident?"
~ Trauma from events that never occurred -- "A study just published in the medical journal Psychosomatics reports four case studies of people who developed PTSD after experiencing a traumatic event that never occurred - while their emotional reaction was real, the events were hallucinated." I've long suspected something like this is possible. People can have intense dreams or drug experiences ("bad trips") that I believe can produce symptoms of PTSD. It's good to see some proof of this being possible.
~ The Necessity of Struggle -- "The two surfing experiences I’ve had were as different as night and day. My first lesson was a blast — the waves were perfect, the instructors were helpful, and I did well regardless of my lack of experience. My second lesson, on the other hand, was a real struggle. In this article, I’ll be discussing why the act of struggling is not only important, but necessary."

~ Billy Collins in Conversation -- "I think clarity is the real risk in poetry because you are exposed. You're out in the open field. You're actually saying things that are comprehensible, and it's easy to criticize something you can understand."
~ Deepak Chopra: How to Feel Safe and Secure -- "Six years past the attacks of 9/11, politics still hinges on the question of national security. Should another major terrorist incident occur, the candidate who plays upon fear and insecurity would almost certainly win. Thoughtful commentators have pointed out a major disconnect between rhetoric and action in the current administration, however. Having salvaged his faltering Presidency in 2001 by promising a total focus on national security, Pres. Bush's unilateral invasion of Iraq did more to increase the ranks and prestige of Al-Qaeda than anyone could have imagined in advance. At the same time, vulnerable parts of this country, such as its seaports and nuclear power plants, remain almost as open to attack today as before 9/11."
~ MediaCulture: The Limits of Newsprint -- "Why one reporter says she had to leave her job at a prestigious newspaper to adequately cover educational inequities in America."
~ Cheney Mulled Israeli Strike on Iran: Newsweek -- "Reuters reports, 'Vice President Dick Cheney had at one point considered asking Israel to launch limited missile strikes at an Iranian nuclear site to provoke a retaliation, Newsweek magazine reported on Sunday.'"
~ How to fix the No Child Left Behind Act -- "But while the law has generated uncommon enmity, average voters support (PDF) it once they learn what it does. And that common sense should prevail: NCLB should keep its heart, and its bite, even though doing that right will require a somewhat new approach." Teachers in AZ hate this law -- it forces teaching to the test. A new approach is truly needed.
~ If Gore wins the Nobel Peace Prize, will he run for president? -- "I am occasionally asked why it is that so many Europeans display reflexive anti-Americanism, and I force myself to choose from a salad of possible answers. One of these is the resentment that I can remember feeling myself when I lived in England in the 1970s: the sheer brute fact that American voters who knew nothing about Europe (and cared less) could pick a president who had more clout than any of our elected prime ministers could exert."
~ The NASCAR Brand Takes Over America -- "From pacifiers to caskets and nearly everything in between, America’s racing fans can show where their true loyalties lie." Call me elitist, but this is scary.
~ America's Most Powerful Pundit? Roger Ebert -- "What exactly is a pundit? According to the dictionary, it's "a person who makes comments or judgments, especially in an authoritative manner; critic or commentator." There's certainly no shortage of that in the media these days.

~ Spaceflight Can Change Bacteria Into More Infectious Pathogens -- "Space flight has been shown to have a profound impact on human physiology as the body adapts to zero gravity environments. Now, a new study has shown that the tiniest passengers flown in space -- microbes -- can be equally affected by spaceflight, making them into more infectious pathogens."
~ Imaging Quantum Entanglement -- "Scientists have demonstrated the dramatic effects of quantum mechanics in a simple magnet. The importance of the work lies in establishing how a conventional tool of material science -- neutron beams produced at particle accelerators and nuclear reactors -- can be used to produce images of the ghostly entangled states of the quantum world."
~ Best Energy Strategy: Small, Green And Local, Experts Say -- "The wisest energy strategy for the United States and other countries facing similar challenges is to move away from their reliance on large-scale centralized coal and nuclear plants, and instead, invest in renewable energy systems and small scale decentralized generation technologies. These alternative technologies are simultaneously feasible, affordable, environmentally friendly, reliable and secure."
~ Collaboration shines possible light on objects 'weirder than black holes' -- "Researchers from Duke University and the University of Cambridge think there is a way to determine whether some black holes are not actually black."
~ It's hard out here for a denier -- "These last few years have not been kind to the climate flat-earthers. Their patron political party got drubbed in the mid-terms, the IPCC demolished their favorite talking points, numerous post-IPCC scientific results make the IPCC look conservative, and the impetus for action on climate change is growing at breakneck speed everywhere outside the U.S. executive branch."
~ Why care about species extinctions? [Gene Expression] -- "The New Republic has a piece titled The Greatest Dying by Jerry Coyne & Hopi E. Hoekstra (see below the fold for how to read it for free if you don't have a TNR subscription). The piece covers the a) general parameters of the mass extinction and b) the reasons why we should care."
~ Parsons School Launches Sustainable Design Review -- "Parsons, the design school of The New School university in New York City, recently held its first Sustainable Design Review -- and it looks like it attracted some really fun, thoughful, and future-forward ideas."

~ Revolution Retreat -- Andrew Cohen -- "Last weekend, I spent an intensely focused forty-eight-hour period with my most committed students from around the world on what we have come to call a 'revolution retreat.'"
~ The Radical Spirituality of Generation X, Part 10: Being in the Skin -- "Embarking on a spiritual journey and taking the first step was the easy part. It was staying on the path that became the challenge. When a seed is planted, hope about what will sprout and blossom is buried in the soil with it."
~ Letting Go of Shambhala -- "I cannot continue planning my life around the next trip to Shambhala. I love it here. I feel home here. I can acknowledge that, know that, revel in the glory of it, but I need not lament."
~ The Techsattva: State Management vs. State Awareness -- "I launched the next episode of The Techsattva, my personal netcast. Here is a little description of the 2nd episode...."
~ Buddhist Geeks 38: Buddhism & Money - Does Priceless Mean it’s Free? -- "In the 2nd part of our conversation with author, artist, and meditation instructor Ethan Nichtern we deal with the slightly off-limits topic of spirituality and money. Ethan shares his perspective on what Right Livelihood ought to look like in a market economy, where the Buddhist teachings are as valuable as many other services."
~ Narcissism -- "Narcissism has as its essence a belief in the “story of I”, which inevitably creates a fascination with this separate I. There is a belief in stories, which creates a sense of I and Other, and we naturally wonder, and sometimes becomes obsessed with, what will happen to this separate self."
~ Spirit animal -- "When I was a child, I had a Big Dream about a black panther, and I realize later that it was very similar to shamanic experiences and connections with a spirit animal. In the dream, there was a connection with the panther as long lost friend, and someone who had immense wisdom, insight and ability to guide me."

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