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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

red-dress

The Woman in Red Is Seen as a Threat by Other Women

New research confirms that the color red sends a signal of sexual availability.

Findings

birth-control-packet

An Evolutionary Explanation for Fear of Female Promiscuity

Researchers in England find a link between sexual morality and women’s economic dependence on men.

Findings

marijuana-colorado

What Happens When Penalties for Pot Smoking Are Reduced? Hardly Anything

At least, that has been the experience in Great Britain, according to a new analysis.

Findings

green-church

The ‘Greening’ of Christianity Is Not Actually Happening

Despite two decades of preaching, self-identified Christians are hardly acting as stewards of the Earth.

Findings

senior-age-art

Making Art Boosts Seniors’ Psychological Resilience

German researchers report positive changes in the brains of recent retirees who learned how to create visual art.

Quick Studies

neighborhood-diversity

The Ongoing Mental Health Benefits of Neighborhood Diversity

Diverse neighborhoods, it turns out, aren’t just conducive to hipsters.

Findings

meditation

We Really Don’t Like Being Alone With Our Thoughts

New research finds having no distractions makes most of us uncomfortable.

Findings

pride-peacock

Pride Goeth Before Cooperation

Israeli researchers report thinking about one’s self-worth increases the likelihood you’ll engage in cooperative behavior.

Findings

west-point-cadets

Looking for a Promotion? Pure Motivations Produce the Best Results

A new study of West Point cadets finds those driven by purely internal motivations were the most likely to succeed.

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.

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For Charitable Products, Sex Doesn’t Sell

Sexy women may turn heads, but for pro-social and charitable products, they won't change minds.

Carbon Taxes Really Do Work

A new study shows that taxing carbon dioxide emissions could actually work to reduce greenhouse gases without any negative effects on employment and revenues.

Savor Good Times, Get Through the Bad Ones—With Categories

Ticking off a category of things to do can feel like progress or a fun time coming to an end.

How to Build a Better Election

Elimination-style voting is harder to fiddle with than majority rule.

Do Conspiracy Theorists Feed on Unsuspecting Internet Trolls?

Not literally, but debunkers and satirists do fuel conspiracy theorists' appetites.

The Big One

One in three drivers in Brooklyn's Park Slope—at certain times of day—is just looking for parking. The same goes for drivers in Manhattan's SoHo. September/October 2014 new-big-one-3

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