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Don't sit down

Following up on this old post, here's a terrifying infographic (if you're an office worker).

Update: title reference, since it's relatively obscure.

By fnord12 | May 24, 2011, 12:39 PM | Science | Comments (0)| Link

Seems not much has changed

Considering the average age in this study is 41, it seems that the traditional male/female roles are still going strong.

I haven't measured my cortisol levels, but i can tell you that i actually don't find it very relaxing if i'm resting while someone else is bustling about.

Household chores often get in the way when dual-earner couples want to unwind after a stress-filled day on the job. Now, a new study shows that while wives' stress levels drop when their husbands are helping them with chores, for men it's the opposite: stress levels fall when their wives are busy while they're relaxing.

Also, i'm not sure if that's really "the opposite". They don't say what happens to wives' stress levels if they relax while husbands are doing the chores. I guess it just never happened?

By fnord12 | May 18, 2011, 4:09 PM | Science | Comments (0)| Link

Bowerbirds use forced perspective.

Read about this in a science magazine that wanyas gave me. Pretty cool.

The great bowerbird's taste for interior design seems quite Spartan compared to his relatives. He creates an avenue of sticks leading up to a courtyard, decorated with gray and white objects, such as shells, bones and pebbles. The male performs in the courtyard while the female watches from the lined avenue. Her point of view is fixed and narrow, and according to Endler, the male knows how to exploit that.

He found that the males place the largest objects towards the rear of the courtyard and the smallest objects in the front near the avenue. This creates forced perspective. From the female's point of view, the bigger objects that are further away look to be the same size the smaller objects that are close by. If bowerbird vision is anything like humans, the courtyard as a whole looks smaller to a watching female...

There are many possible benefits to this illusion. Endler says, "The simplest hypothesis (and perhaps most likely) is that the more regular pattern on the court, as seen from the avenue, makes the male more conspicuous or easier to see". Alternatively, by performing on an apparently smaller stage, the male could also make himself look relatively bigger to the female. "To my knowledge no other animals make constructions which produce perspective," says Endler.

By fnord12 | May 6, 2011, 9:01 AM | Science | Comments (0)| Link

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