Cool science videos (round two!)

Black Hole Artist's Impression Astronaut Falling Into Tidal Forces Firewall Hawking Weekly Show Stephen

Hey, all! To splice things up a bit and deal with the awfulness of finals (damn you, Galois theory!), I’m throwing together another video post for this week! These are the people who inspire me to share the wonders of science, and I want to give them as much credit as I can. Enjoy these videos, then go check out the creators’ full channels. Beyond!

MinuteEarth

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Cool science videos

Stars Space Outer Beautiful Pictures Secrets Colorful Large Magellanic Cloud Star Forming Stellar Nursery Weekly Show Beautiful

Every blogger has his inspiration, and mine has in part come from the amazing science channels on YouTube. To escape the old “wall of text with pictures” habit, here is a sampling of fun videos. Check out each channel for more science awesomeness.

Vsauce

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Is gaydar real?

Gaydar Real Fake Scientific Exist Stereotype Rule Study Weekly Show

Since the 1980s, gaydar has become a common word in the English language. A combination of “gay” and “radar,” Merriam-Webster defines it as “the ability to recognize homosexuals through observation or intuition.” Clearly, the idea is ridiculous (not to mention insulting to gay people). But what if I told you not only that gaydar exists but that it is a scientifically documented phenomenon? Enter one of the weirdest and most fascinating series of studies this blogger has ever seen.

In 2008, Dr. Nicholas Rule of the University of Toronto (then a Ph.D. candidate at Tufts University) began to investigate the idea of using visual cues to determine someone’s membership to  a perceptually ambiguous group (i.e. one without clear physical identifiers, such as religion or sexual orientation). Rule and fellow researchers gathered headshots of individuals and removed hairstyles, piercings, makeup, tattoos, or any other cultural markings. In a series of experiments, they flashed the bare faces for five hundred milliseconds and asked subjects to determine whether their sexual orientation. The results were shocking.

Gaydar Real Fake Scientific Exist Stereotype Rule Study Weekly Show

Gaydar: a made-up concept or a scientific phenomenon?

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Is sex addiction real?

I know how you feel. You have a burning, insatiable desire. Nothing can satisfy it except for the one thing you want—no, desperately need. You can’t hold it in anymore, you just have to know: is sex addiction real?

Addiction, while often thrown around colloquially, is a real medical condition. According to the American Society of Addiction Medicine, “Addiction is a primary, chronic disease of brain reward, motivation, memory and related circuitry. Dysfunction in these circuits leads to characteristic biological, psychological, social and spiritual manifestations. This is reflected in an individual pathologically pursuing reward and/or relief by substance use and other behaviors.” That’s their short-definition—you can read their long definition here. (Also: how the word “spiritual” can appear in any medical definition is beyond me, but that’s for another post.). So what does this actually mean?

Sex Addiction Hypersexual Disorder Dependence True Real Weekly Show

Hide yo kids and hide yo wife. It’s a movie. About sex. But is sex addiction a real thing?

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Could we be The Last of Us?

Clicker The Last of Us Fungus Infected Playstation Game Year Joel Ellie Real Life Science Weekly Show

Last year, Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us took the gaming world by storm. It tells a story of a man and a child journeying through a post-apocalyptic America, fighting off infected humans and scavengers along the way. The holocaust stems from a strange fungus that has caught humanity off guard. It infects the brain, slowly taking control of the host until it becomes a zombie, solely focused on spreading new spores until it dies. If you haven’t played The Last of Us, stop reading this blog and play it now. If you have, here’s a question: could The Last of Us happen in real life?

Clicker The Last of Us Fungus Infected Playstation Game Year Joel Ellie Real Life Science Weekly Show

Could this be to us?

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