Science

Science
3:18 pm
Fri August 15, 2014

How to Learn What's Real – and What Isn't – on Discovery's Shark Week

A Great White shark swims off Guadalupe Island on the pacific coast of Mexico.
flickr.com/elevy

Shark Week is winding down on the Discovery Channel, and with the annual televised ritual comes an uptick of interest in sharks. But with many scientists saying lots of Shark Week facts are dead in the water, how do you separate fact from fiction?

Texas Standard's David Brown recently spoke with freelance writer and evolutionary biologist Christie Wilcox to shed a little light on what's real and what isn’t. 

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Two Guys on Your Head
11:31 am
Fri August 15, 2014

Let's Celebrate! But Why?

Credit http://www.celebrationjourneys.com.au/

We've passed the 4th of July, Christmas is a ways away, and New Year’s isn't for months So why, you may ask, is Two Guys on Your Head doing a show on celebration?

Aside from the show being on-air for a year, we've got a lot to celebrate and so do you—even though you might not think so right away.

In this edition of Two Guys on Your Head, Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke discuss the evolutionary reasons behind the importance of celebration, gratitude, and achievement.

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Two Guys on Your Head
8:06 am
Fri August 8, 2014

Why Failure Can Make You a More Successful Person

stockmonkeys.com

Failure is a word that carries a lot of baggage, arousing emotional responses that we’d usually rather avoid. 

What about success? Why does the thought of success conjure images and feelings of comfort and satisfaction. This week, "Two Guys on Your Head" examine how the heights of success and the "training wheels" of failure impact our everyday lives.

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Hacking
6:16 am
Wed August 6, 2014

1.2 Billion Web Credentials Said To Be In Russian Gang's Hands

Originally published on Wed August 6, 2014 6:45 am

In what's believed to be the largest stockpile of stolen Internet credentials in history, a Russian hacking ring has gathered more than 1.2 billion unique Internet credentials, according to Web security experts. The relatively small group has reportedly collected passwords along with user names and email addresses.

"This year is already on track to be the year of the mega-mega breach," Orla Cox, director of security response for the anti-virus software company, Symantec.

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Two Guys on Your Head
7:59 am
Fri August 1, 2014

Are We Wired to Need Greed?

Credit www.californiatrustestateandprobatelitigation.com

Is greed good?  Is greed a human instinct?  Why are some people inclined to hoard?

For some individuals, greed and selfishness are much more commonly displayed than generosity. So, it might be fair to say greed feels more natural for some. On the other hand, most might say they favor unselfishness.

In this installment of "Two Guys on Your Head" Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke discuss whether greed is instinctual or not.

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Science
2:33 pm
Mon July 28, 2014

Could Maker Culture Spark the Next Industrial Revolution?

A 3D As tools like 3D printers (pictured) drop in price, they increasingly fuel a maker culture, according to UT engineer Scott Allen.
flickr.com/creative_tools

Everyone has ideas. Machines, inventions, and improvements to everyday products: things that bounce around in everyone's mind. But unless that someone is an engineer, inventor, or tinkerer, those ideas stay just that … ideas.

Until now that is.  

A new, emerging "maker" culture encourages innovators to create as they wish with the help of 3D printers, laser cutters, and many other tools. The Obama Administration even recently hosted a nationwide "Day of Making" for these creators. 

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Two Guys on Your Head
10:43 am
Fri July 25, 2014

Why Some Beliefs Are Beyond Debate

Credit onewithnow.com

I am absolutely certain that I’m right and you’re wrong, so because of this certainty, I will argue my belief, which I believe to be correct, however long it takes to convince you to submit to my superior correctness. 

Have you ever encountered such a fixed and inflexible perspective of a belief in a person who disagrees with you on something?  Of course you have.  We’re only human, and it’s part of the nature of our cognitive patterns to want to hold onto certain beliefs with a very firm intellectual grip.

On this week’s episode of Two Guys On Your Head, Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke analyze the differing approaches to holding a belief and how those different approaches affect interaction in society. Essentially, this comes down to two fundamental ways of holding a belief: You can have a firm grip, or a loose one.

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Science
1:12 pm
Wed July 23, 2014

You Can Thank This Fly for Advances in Hearing Aid Technology

The 2-millimeter wide device, created by Professor Neal Hall and his group of graduate students, mimicks the Ormia ochracea fly's hearing ability. The diagram shows the seesaw-like mechanism in the fly.
University of Texas at Austin

Imagine being in a room full of people – a cacophony of conversations and noise. Despite standing right next to someone, you strain to hear her voice.

People who use hearing aids often struggle to focus on one voice – especially in noisy environments. They could crank up the volume on their hearing aids – but that would also crank up the volume of everything else in the background.

Professor Neal Hall and his group of graduate students from the Cockrell School of Engineering at the University of Texas offers a solution: a device that mimics the hearing powers of a fly.

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Two Guys on Your Head
9:19 am
Fri July 18, 2014

How To Deal With Jerks

Credit www.spring.org.uk

Don’t we all hate having to deal with jerks? Everyone has some unpleasant person that they encounter frequently in life and would rather not. 

Fact is, we constantly encounter an endless variety of people with an endless variety of attitudes, perspectives and beliefs that – in all realistic possibility – will differ from the attitudes that we carry for the moment. 

This week, the Two Guys On Your Head, Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke, will toss around the topic of jerks – and provide some insightful, doctor prescribed strategies for handling difficult people in our lives.  

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Two Guys on your head
1:51 pm
Fri July 11, 2014

Why We Can't Multitask (But Think We Can)

flickr.com/ryantron

Do you take pride in your ability to divide your focus and energy into more than one task at a time? Do you think you’re a good multitasker?

Chances are, you’re probably not.

We sat down with two experts – the Two Guys, Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Robert Duke – to take a closer look at the topic of multitasking. Their take offers a perspective into some of the unique issues associated with multitasking.

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Two Guys on Your Head
8:11 am
Fri July 4, 2014

Why We're More Influential Than We May Think

Credit http://www.wildfiresparks.co.uk

Being the incredibly social species that we are, we humans simply cannot avoid influencing one another when we interact. Influence is inevitable. 

The question then becomes, since influence is inevitable in human interaction, can we achieve the kind of influence that we intend to have, or that we might think we have in the world? 

On this week’s show, the Two Guys on Your Head, Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke, influence our understanding of the different functions and effects of influence in our lives.

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Two Guys on Your Head
8:46 am
Fri June 27, 2014

What's the Role of Laughter In Our Lives?

flickr.com/alancleaver

What’s so funny?

In this week’s show, the Two Guys on Your Head, Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke, analyze laughter until it cracks you up.

Why is it that laughter is such a seemingly uncontrollable response? There's many angles in a discussion on laughter, since there is no definitive way of explaining or understanding such a complex aspect of life. So lets start by noting laughter is a form of social bonding. 

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Two Guys on Your Head
9:00 am
Fri June 20, 2014

Jean Piaget and the Journey from Infancy to Adulthood

flickr.com/pinksherbet

Swiss psychiatrist Jean Piaget was born in 1896, and died in 1980. His background was in biology, but he became fascinated with studying the psychological development of children.

Piaget was a transformational researcher in the field of child developmental psychology. In fact, he is still, to this day, the most cited psychologist in the field.

So what exactly did Piaget do?  How did he change our understanding of human brain development from infancy to adulthood?  In this edition of  Two Guys on Your Head Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke talk about Jean Piaget and his impact on the field of cognitive psychology.

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Two Guys on Your Head
8:57 am
Fri June 13, 2014

How Our Senses Work Together to Keep Us Sane

flickr.com/orangeacid

Have you ever taken a moment to consider the incredible orchestra of sensory integration that happens constantly in conscious life?  Without this integration of our senses, the world would be a barrage of overstimulation – and reality would be very disorienting. 

In this episode of Two Guys on Your HeadDr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke explore the intricacies of the incredible sensory-processing systems that create cohesion for the world around us.

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Two Guys on your head
8:22 am
Fri June 6, 2014

How Does Psychological Distance Affect Us?

The idea of distance conjures up many images in our minds. We might be thinking of how wonderful it will be when we are retired and have time to spend with our loved ones, do some traveling, or play 18 holes of golf on a weekday. Or perhaps when we think of distance, we think of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and how far away the conflicts are from us.

For Art Markman and Robert Duke, how we process distance is particularly important, because it clues researchers in to how we think and make decisions as a result of distance.

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Two Guys on Your Head
9:03 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Why Would You Think I Think That? How Theory of Mind Helps Us Interact

flickr.com/phild41

Who knows what? Essentially, this question is the basis of the complex concept called Theory of Mind – which is very misleadingly labeled. No, it’s not a theory that explains how mind works, as you might assume. It’s a process within our minds that allows us to separate and distinguish between what we know ourselves and what we know that other people know – or don’t know.  It’s a skill that is critical for accomplishing effective social interaction in the world. A better term might be Theory of Other People's Minds.

Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke do a wonderful job of explaining and dissecting this important skill in this week’s episode of Two Guys on Your Head. Have a listen and get smarter.  

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Two Guys on Your Head
9:00 am
Fri May 23, 2014

How to Go All the Way in Online Dating

What's wrong with online dating? According to the Two Guys, the problem is exactly that it’s all about dating.
flickr.com/yourdon

Everybody knows somebody who's familiar with the online dating service experience. It's a fairly common way for people to meet and become romantically involved these days. But how is it different from more traditional dating and courtship?

Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke take a crack at online dating in this week’s episode of Two Guys on Your Head.

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Two Guys on Your Head
2:07 pm
Wed May 14, 2014

Protecting Your Brain as You Age

Credit flickr.com/jvandoor

Whether we like it or not, time marches on. And as it does, we age. 

One of the most challenging realities for everyone to face in life is that we are all, inevitably, destined to grow old (if we’re lucky, that is).

Aging correlates to a steady decline of functional abilities, both physical and mental. Memory and cognition peak in our early twenties, and we begin a very slow, steady decline of those functions as we near our senior years.  

After age 80, many bodily functions – including brain function – seem to have reached the average limit of their operation. So what can we do to preserve our brains for as long as possible?

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Science
4:07 pm
Fri May 9, 2014

Astronomers Set Out to Find the Sun's Long Lost Sibling - And Succeeded

The star HD 162826 is probably a "solar sibling," that is, a star born in the same star cluster as the Sun.
Credit Ivan Ramirez/Tim Jones/McDonald Observatory

When Ivan Ramirez started his search about a year ago, he really didn’t think he’d find much.

"We expected it to be either one or zero," says Ramirez, an astronomer at UT-Austin.

Ramirez and his crew were looking through thousands and thousands of stars – all in order to find just the right one. 

“We're looking for the stars that were born with the sun," he says. "Because our sun, like most other stars, was born in a cluster – probably a thousand to ten thousand other stars. We know that there are a few that we can detect that are nearby, but it’s been a really tough job to do."

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Two Guys on Your Head
8:53 am
Fri May 9, 2014

How Loved Ones With Mental Illness Affect Their Caregivers

Credit flickr.com/rueful

Living with a mental illness is difficult – not only for the sufferer, but for caregivers, friends and family.

In this edition of Two Guys on Your Head, Dr. Art Markman and Dr. Bob Duke talk how it can be isolating and disheartening to interact with someone who has depression, dementia or any other mental illness – and they offer some ideas that can help.

One of the struggles in caring for friends and family with mental illness is that we have no idea what we’re really dealing with. Unlike seeing someone with a broken bone, we don’t see mental illness. It's more like a cancer in that it affects the whole family and it lasts for a long time.

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