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Science Popularization

xSilverPhinx

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Science Popularization
« on: September 15, 2020, 09:03:05 PM »
Around March of the year of our Noodly Lord 2020 I and a small group of people decided to start a science popularization project to bring topics on neuroscience to the lay public using social media (especially Instagram and Facebook). We recently were able to engage professors and have the project approved as a university extension project -- which makes it official -- and we'll soon be creating pages to start posting our content.

We have some ideas on what could be of interest to the larger audience. I suggested popular neuromyths, or "fake neuro" as I call it (hoping it sticks  ;D :P) and the others agreed to start mythbusting at first, tackling myths such as 'we only use 10% of our brain' and 'the triune brain' but we need to branch out and cover other topics as well.

So, I'm asking what topics do you lovely HAFers believe will be of interest to people in general? What do you find interesting? I will be taking all suggestions to the group.  :grin:
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Randy

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Re: Science Popularization
« Reply #1 on: September 16, 2020, 12:27:24 AM »
How about the myth of ESP? It might be comforting for people to know that their innermost thoughts are safe.
"Maybe it's just a bunch of stuff that happens." -- Homer Simpson
"Some people focus on the destination. Atheists focus on the journey." -- Barry Goldberg

xSilverPhinx

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Re: Science Popularization
« Reply #2 on: September 16, 2020, 01:27:01 AM »
How about the myth of ESP? It might be comforting for people to know that their innermost thoughts are safe.

That's a good one! I do like me some good ol' pseudoscience :grin:
I lose myself infused in something more than what they've seen
I'm not a slave to greed
I don't embrace your make believe
I've never been for sale no matter what they think I need



Tank

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Re: Science Popularization
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2020, 09:45:16 AM »
How is this progressing?
If religions were TV channels atheism is turning the TV off.
“Religion is a culture of faith; science is a culture of doubt.” ― Richard P. Feynman
'It is said that your life flashes before your eyes just before you die. That is true, it's called Life.' - Terry Pratchett
Remember, your inability to grasp science is not a valid argument against it.

Icarus

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Re: Science Popularization
« Reply #4 on: September 22, 2020, 01:21:48 AM »
Explore the reasons why so many people subscribe to conspiracy theories. 

I am given the impression that the less educated, and economically challenged, are more likely to believe in things that are so often absurd. (did I mention that the very religious are willing victims?)   We have a prime mover for conspiricy stuff here in the US. Qanon has a frighteningly dangerous number of followers.

You could consider naming your program "The Bullshit Filter".....


billy rubin

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Re: Science Popularization
« Reply #5 on: September 22, 2020, 02:51:57 PM »
i don't have any problem with ESP, except that it doesn't seem to be demonstrable in the terms that people want to use to define it. given that, i don't see anything there, even though there were a number of interesting anecdotes in my own life.

it's like ghosts. i think inductive evidence is pretty clear that there are some sort of phenomena that people in different ages and regions have called "ghosts." it doesn't appear that the customary explanation of spirits of dead people has any credence, and whatever they are they don't appear to be understood well enough to be tested by any intelligible method, but something appears to me to be going on.

fuck knows what. electromagnetic fossils?  sensory detection of currently unknown stimulus? bullshit?


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Randy

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Re: Science Popularization
« Reply #6 on: September 25, 2020, 03:54:54 PM »
I think Silver is trying to keep to the neurological aspect and I don't think ghosts apply there. I could be wrong. I mean, why do people think they see ghosts? Now that would fit. Hmmm. This begs for more study.  :thinking:
"Maybe it's just a bunch of stuff that happens." -- Homer Simpson
"Some people focus on the destination. Atheists focus on the journey." -- Barry Goldberg

xSilverPhinx

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Re: Science Popularization
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2020, 02:20:10 PM »
How is this progressing?

Quite nicely!  ;D

There was a quick competition for the name of the Instagram page, and a clear winner was voted into existence: @Sinapticando. :grin:

The imminent next step is to invite a biologist to talk about the uncontrolled fires in Patanal (marshlands), just one of many endangered Brazilian biomes.  :'( That doesn't specifically have much to do with neurosciences, though we could talk about the stress/anxiety toll the destruction of the environment is having on many people, especially those who live in those areas and livelihoods depend on it, but this rampant destruction is one of the most pressing topics currently.
I lose myself infused in something more than what they've seen
I'm not a slave to greed
I don't embrace your make believe
I've never been for sale no matter what they think I need



xSilverPhinx

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Re: Science Popularization
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2020, 02:25:55 PM »
Explore the reasons why so many people subscribe to conspiracy theories.

That's an excellent idea!  ;D 

Quote
I am given the impression that the less educated, and economically challenged, are more likely to believe in things that are so often absurd. (did I mention that the very religious are willing victims?)   We have a prime mover for conspiricy stuff here in the US. Qanon has a frighteningly dangerous number of followers.

You could consider naming your program "The Bullshit Filter".....

I don't know about that, Icarus, I'm under the impression that generally the more educated and/or smarter people can be more prone to believing in certain conspiracy theories. Smart people don't necessarily have disciplined thought, are not necessarily critical thinkers, and are generally better at the mental gymnastics required to believe in weird things. :notsure:
I lose myself infused in something more than what they've seen
I'm not a slave to greed
I don't embrace your make believe
I've never been for sale no matter what they think I need



xSilverPhinx

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Re: Science Popularization
« Reply #9 on: September 30, 2020, 02:31:02 PM »
Billy rubin, that's an interesting question. Most cultures also believe in a god or gods (which to me, are much like ghosts of some sort), but does that mean there is at least one god in existence? I don't know, though I don't believe so. To me it's a failure of interpretation of natural events within a framework of prior beliefs...suddenly a lamp gets knocked over and someone who might be prone to believing in the afterlife might believe it was the work of some poltergeist or something, without really giving alternative explanations due thought. 

electromagnetic fossils?

Wut? :lol:
I lose myself infused in something more than what they've seen
I'm not a slave to greed
I don't embrace your make believe
I've never been for sale no matter what they think I need



xSilverPhinx

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Re: Science Popularization
« Reply #10 on: September 30, 2020, 02:34:13 PM »
I think Silver is trying to keep to the neurological aspect and I don't think ghosts apply there. I could be wrong. I mean, why do people think they see ghosts? Now that would fit. Hmmm. This begs for more study.  :thinking:

Yes  ;D

When I was an undergrad I had this idea to investigate why certain people 'see ghosts' when exposed to infra-sound. I didn't discover very much but it's fun to look for perfectly natural phenomena that might explain supposedly supernatural ones.
I lose myself infused in something more than what they've seen
I'm not a slave to greed
I don't embrace your make believe
I've never been for sale no matter what they think I need



Davin

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Re: Science Popularization
« Reply #11 on: September 30, 2020, 04:04:20 PM »
Quote
I am given the impression that the less educated, and economically challenged, are more likely to believe in things that are so often absurd. (did I mention that the very religious are willing victims?)   We have a prime mover for conspiricy stuff here in the US. Qanon has a frighteningly dangerous number of followers.

You could consider naming your program "The Bullshit Filter".....

I don't know about that, Icarus, I'm under the impression that generally the more educated and/or smarter people can be more prone to believing in certain conspiracy theories. Smart people don't necessarily have disciplined thought, are not necessarily critical thinkers, and are generally better at the mental gymnastics required to believe in weird things. :notsure:
That is my experience. And it can be worse, especially if they know they are smart, because how can they be fooled? And then they are able to come up with huge mazes of logic to explain things away.
Always question all authorities because the authority you don't question is the most dangerous... except me, never question me.

Icarus

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Re: Science Popularization
« Reply #12 on: September 30, 2020, 11:41:13 PM »
Explore the reasons why so many people subscribe to conspiracy theories.

That's an excellent idea!  ;D 

Quote
I am given the impression that the less educated, and economically challenged, are more likely to believe in things that are so often absurd. (did I mention that the very religious are willing victims?)   We have a prime mover for conspiricy stuff here in the US. Qanon has a frighteningly dangerous number of followers.

You could consider naming your program "The Bullshit Filter".....

I don't know about that, Icarus, I'm under the impression that generally the more educated and/or smarter people can be more prone to believing in certain conspiracy theories. Smart people don't necessarily have disciplined thought, are not necessarily critical thinkers, and are generally better at the mental gymnastics required to believe in weird things. :notsure:

I defer to your authority about such things.  In this case I disagree. My experience and observations have led me to the tentative conclusions that I claimed; above.

For a tiny example, let us consider the HAF membership. (yes I know that this is too small a sample)   HAFers are a few cuts above in terms of education, judgement, sophistication, and absence of religious commitment and almost none of us believe that the earth is flat..  I dare say, none of us are much inclined to accept conspiracy theories as reality. 

An example is the dumb ass guy that showed up, armed, at the Pizzeria that was a central agency for national  pedophile activity. One of the principal participants, part of the evil cabal, was Hillary Clinton.  Neither he nor his associates have more than a high school education, they do not read books, they are simply gullible people who will believe thoroughly improbable claims.

There are people who do not, or perhaps can not, understand the world as it actually is.  They do want and need to have an explanation for things that they do not understand. Thus they are prime candidates for accepting bogus explanations that fulfill their need to know about forces and things that they did not learn about in school. 

Think of a reason for people to believe in gods.  That sort of belief satisfies the need to know about our origin. Genesis one works well for them.  Their minister or bible study person reads for them. Saves them the headache of actually reading. More importantly, they passionately accept the words of their instructors as the irrefutable word of god.

Other people who do not take the time or effort to determine what is real and what is myth, are............wait for it........>>dedicated Trump supporters>>. 

 Why are prosperity preachers able to extract the life savings of his/her congregants?  Many people must actually enjoy being duped.  What the hell.....Benny Hinn can cure cancers and blindness and his followers believe that he has that ability. I daresay that few if any of his believers have earned their PHDs

You have used the word; smart. That needs to be separated from the word; intelligent. 

Argument finished for now.  Again I say that I respect your superior study of brain things.   Well alright dammit, maybe I have become more mentally handicapped than I want to admit.  Meanwhile, Love ya' girl.


billy rubin

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Re: Science Popularization
« Reply #13 on: October 01, 2020, 07:19:14 PM »

For a tiny example, let us consider the HAF membership. (yes I know that this is too small a sample)   HAFers are a few cuts above in terms of education, judgement, sophistication, and absence of religious commitment and almost none of us believe that the earth is flat..   


and yet some of us are quite prepared to accept round-earth theory on exactly the same basis that we disparage when it's used to support theism.



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