Either way, Waterloo is rainy today, but considerably greener than when I left two weeks ago. Here's some infotainment that I came across recently
- If you've been jetting back and forth from the USA to Germany as many times as I, you'll have noticed that Germans don't smile as permanently, and as widely as the average American. Since the USA keeps on slipping in the international life-expectancy ratings, I want to inform you that a Prof. Dieter Zapf of the Johann Wolfgang Goethe University of Frankfurt has claimed that constant smiling can be bad for your health and can lead to depression, high blood pressure and cardiovascular problems. See 'Spiegel: Don't Smile Too Much, German Shop Assistants Warned'. (The reason Americans grin so much more is of course that they spend lots of money on bleaching their teeth, and then they want to show off with it.)
- Stefan Debener, a brain researcher at the MRC Institute of Hearing Research in Southampton, England and coworkers examined the occurrence of the brain-fart, and found that about 30 seconds prior to making a mistake a brain region becomes active that is usually engaged when a person is relaxing. Dr. Debener suggests then "to create monitoring devices to warn people before committing errors on the job." Yeah, I guess some people's farts are other people's ideas. See Globe and Mail: Cutting back on errors on the job.
- The results of the previously mentioned arXiv user survey are out: Information Resources in High-Energy Physics: Surveying the Present Landscape and Charting the Future Course, arXiv 0804.2701
- Just in case you missed it, Stefan and me, we've had a very insightful conversation with the LHC defense on our earlier post 'Black Holes at the LHC-again' (see comment section). Feel free to add your 99 cent.
- Quotation of the week:
"Nihil est incertius vulgo, nihil obscurius voluntate hominum, nihil fallacius ratione tota comitiorum."
(Nothing is more unpredictable than the mob, nothing more obscure than public opinion, nothing more deceptive than the whole political system.)~Cicero