Wednesday, 28 January 2009

"The estrogen hormone oestradiol is associated with just about every aspect of female beauty. As well as serving as a growth hormone for female reproductive organs, it's associated with having a symmetrical face, large breasts and a low waist-to-hip ratio. Now, the hormone is credited with one more association: it makes women serial monogamists."

""Are birth control pills changing modern women's mating strategies?"

Research into the Major Histocompatibility Complex has demonstrated that women tend to be attracted to men with substantially different genes in that region. This helps insure that offspring have a more efficient immune system. During pregnancy, the attraction is reversed. Women tend to prefer intimacy with people with like MHC, probably because their families will be supportive and protective of them during pregnancy and it is preparation for bonding with the offspring.

But when women are on the contraceptive pill, the hormonal effects mimic pregnancy. Thus, when on the pill, you're more likely to be attracted to men with a similar MHC. So if you meet your partner while you're on the pill, then go off the pill when you've decided you want a family, serious trouble can brew. Indeed, there is research supporting the notion that it is at exactly this point that a substantial number of marriages fall apart.

It also raises the issue of those offspring in relationships which started when the woman was on the pill. Is a substantial proportion of the subsequent generation going to have less effective immune systems?

Sounds like this should be linked up with
Paul Ekman's work I think - on microslicing video, and predicting the strength of a relationship.

Tuesday, 20 January 2009

The Unlikely Salsero - Seeing the Dance in Your Head article

Interesting to have a read of this - having had my first ballroom dance lesson recently (Social Foxtrot, Chachacha, some salsa to end). Whilst the best may yet be to come (Rumba, Argentian tango...) it was interesting to be throw into it - learning a start of a new pattern prior to even knowing the basic steps of the social Foxtrot.

I know that my partner commented that I kept on looking blank, and staring down at the floor -
A sign sometimes of heavy concentration and trying to visualise/go over the steps.

My thoughts also go back to getting Jules of LightStage fame hooked on salsa, so we could get some salsa done in one.
It would be a great visualisation tool.
Movement sensors, ultrasound emitters - all possible to be used:

Can't find the information.

Monday, 19 January 2009

Ultimate boys toys 2009

2008 list from Gizmodo:

Sony BDV-IT1000ES Bravia Theater System
Acoustic research FPS 10 Subwoofer
Nissan GT-R
Serious Materials EcoRock
Livescribe Pulse
Any camera that can do fast fps still shooting. Maybe RED will get there soon. (Not in the league of a Vision Research V12 or Phantom HD).

Friday, 9 January 2009

Deep Brain stimulation

Thought experiment. If they got accurate Deep Brain Stimulation to work - would you use it? (Syndicate style?)

I always pondered - would there be a way to stimulate specific parts of the brain if you had orthogonal stimulators? One one side, another 90 degrees to it?

And if you could successfully do implants, why not? Or go through the nasal cavity, or the ears?

I remember the Royal Society had a small spot on one of theire open science days. There is a fair bit out there, of what happens when you stimulate neurons, and to behonest, it sounds like if you could do it accurately, it'd be bloody good fun, and highly addictive.