Menus Subscribe Search

Tom Jacobs

Tom Jacobs
Staff writer Tom Jacobs is a veteran journalist with more than 20 years experience at daily newspapers. He has served as a staff writer for The Los Angeles Daily News and the Santa Barbara News-Press. His work has also appeared in The Los Angeles Times, Chicago Tribune, and Ventura County Star.

Recent posts

Findings

music-training-guitar

More Evidence That Music Talent Is Largely Innate

New research on twins finds nature and nurture interact to produce accomplished musicians. A second study suggests chimps might be among their fans.

Findings

mitch-mcconnell

Accurately or Not, Conservatives Perceive Themselves as United

New research suggests this impression of consensus can cut two ways, inspiring both activism and a false sense of confidence.

Findings

woody-allen-effect

For Some, Worry Inspires Creativity

In a new study, neurotic people did better on a creativity task after thinking about a worrisome incident.

Findings

salvation-army-donations

How to Design an Effective Plea for Donations

Two new studies suggest an image of a single needy child is most effective, so long as you avoid the temptation to go with the most photogenic victims.

Findings

facebook-phone

The Comforting Presence of the Facebook Icon

The social network’s logo can serve as a symbol of emotional connection when it is most needed.

Findings

intelligence-dementia

A Lifetime of Intellectual Stimulation Staves Off Dementia

Turning to brainy pursuits in later years also helps delay the onset of the dreaded condition, according to a new study.

Findings

robot-doctor-fix

I’d Never Admit That to My Doctor. But to a Computer? Sure

New research finds patients are more likely to respond honestly to personal questions when talking to a virtual human.

Findings

old-plantation

Slavery’s Legacy: Race-Based Economic Inequality

Two European researchers find a link between county-level slavery in 1860 and economic inequality today.

Findings

music-education-piano

New Evidence of Mental Benefits From Music Training

Harvard-based researchers find a link between early musical training and cognitive capacities that allow for planned, controlled behavior.

Findings

pinocchio-lying

George Washington Trumps Pinocchio When It Comes to Promoting Honesty in Kids

Researchers find the classic tale in which the future president admits to bad behavior encourages at least some kids to confess a lie.

Findings

womb-artists

Are Artists Created in the (Testosterone-Rich) Womb?

New research suggests artists may begin their journey toward creative achievement before they are born.

Findings

morality-illo

Morality Can Trump Tribalism

Encouraging research points to a way to decouple loyalty to one’s own tribe with disdain for outsiders.

Findings

mindfulness-illustration

Mindfulness Can Avert Bodily Responses to Emotional Stress

New research finds acceptance of moment-to-moment thoughts and feelings can greatly reduce the impact of stress on your health.

Findings

steve-jobs-reflection

Literally Touching Greatness Can Increase Your Creativity

New research finds one type of “magical thinking”—the belief that ability can be transferred through touch—can actually work for some people.

Findings

green-forest-path

Feeling Impulsive? Head for the Forest

New research finds yet another benefit of viewing images of the natural world.

Findings

art-museum

Art Museums Foster an Appreciation for Ambiguity

New research from Vienna finds viewing artworks in a museum enhances the aesthetic experience.

Findings

music-education-notes

High School Music Classes Remain Popular, but Hispanics Lag Behind

New research finds that, contrary to fears, the No Child Left Behind act had little impact on enrollment in music courses.

Findings

chicanos-ca

Where Do Latinos Stand on Major Political Issues? Well, It Depends

New research finds the political opinions expressed by Latinos in America can be quite different depending on whether they are polled in English or Spanish.

Findings

painting

Artists Working Solo Create the Finest Work—or So We Believe

New research suggests we consider the amount of effort that goes into making a work of art when we’re evaluating it—and take off points for collaborations.

Findings

carbon-emissions

How Much Carbon Did You Emit Today?

New research suggests a reminder may inspire more environmentally friendly behavior.

Findings

hurricane-photo-generic

Hurricanes With Female Names Are More Deadly

Researchers find giving a storm a feminine name inadvertently conveys the impression that it isn’t all that dangerous. The result is inadequate preparation—and a higher death toll.

Findings

narcissus

Narcissists Are Capable of Empathy After All

New research from the U.K. suggests people with narcissistic tendencies can be moved by others’ suffering.

Findings

dementia-puzzle-concept

Cynics Are at a Higher Risk of Developing Dementia

New research from Finland finds there’s danger in thinking the worst of your fellow man.

Findings

ucsb-lagoon

New Insights Into Why Some Men Assault Women

For some, the sense that they are not sufficiently masculine leads to stress, and ultimately to striking out at the women closest to them.

Findings

home-books

Books in the Home Are Strongly Linked to Academic Achievement

Test scores from 42 nations provide evidence of the benefits of having a home library.

A weekly roundup of the best of Pacific Standard and PSmag.com, delivered straight to your inbox.

Follow us


Subscribe Now

The Rise of the Nuisance Flood

Minor floods are afflicting parts of Maryland nearly 10 times more often than was the case in the 1960s.

America’s Streams Are Awash With Pesticides Banned in Europe

You may have never heard of clothianidin, but it's probably in your local river.

How Textbooks Have Changed the Face of War

War is more personal, less glorious, and more hellish in modern textbooks than in the past. But there’s still room for improvement.

NASA Could Build Entire Spacecrafts in Space Using 3-D Printers

This year NASA will experiment with 3-D printing small objects in space. That could mark the beginning of a gravity-free manufacturing revolution.

The Most Popular Ways to Share Good and Bad Personal News

Researchers rank the popularity of all of the different methods we have for telling people about our lives, from Facebook to face-to-face.

The Big One

One in two full-time American fast-food workers' families are enrolled in public assistance programs, at a cost of $7 billion per year. July/August 2014

Copyright © 2014 by Pacific Standard and The Miller-McCune Center for Research, Media, and Public Policy. All Rights Reserved.