Goose Bump Technology

Researchers think goose-bumps probably reflect a distinct emotional state, a kind of awed mixture of fear and joy. English and French lack a word for this, but German has two.

Goose flesh, that rather odd form of emotional reaction in which a chill is felt and bumps form on the skin and the hairs stand erect, was noted by Darwin and still has scientists intrigued. Research into 'piloerection' had been hampered by the lack of an objective measure, until now. A new camera has found that film is a more reliable provoker of goose-bumps than music. "The researchers' conclusion is that given the low specificity of other physiological measures of emotion, measuring goose-bumps objectively could prove to be a useful new tool in the psychologist's armamentarium when studying emotional responses."

​There are two kinds of failure – but only one is honorable

Malcolm Gladwell teaches "Get over yourself and get to work" for Big Think Edge.

Big Think Edge
  • Learn to recognize failure and know the big difference between panicking and choking.
  • At Big Think Edge, Malcolm Gladwell teaches how to check your inner critic and get clear on what failure is.
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Why are so many objects in space shaped like discs?

It's one of the most consistent patterns in the unviverse. What causes it?

Videos
  • Spinning discs are everywhere – just look at our solar system, the rings of Saturn, and all the spiral galaxies in the universe.
  • Spinning discs are the result of two things: The force of gravity and a phenomenon in physics called the conservation of angular momentum.
  • Gravity brings matter together; the closer the matter gets, the more it accelerates – much like an ice skater who spins faster and faster the closer their arms get to their body. Then, this spinning cloud collapses due to up and down and diagonal collisions that cancel each other out until the only motion they have in common is the spin – and voila: A flat disc.

This is the best (and simplest) world map of religions

Both panoramic and detailed, this infographic manages to show both the size and distribution of world religions.

(c) CLO / Carrie Osgood
Strange Maps
  • At a glance, this map shows both the size and distribution of world religions.
  • See how religions mix at both national and regional level.
  • There's one country in the Americas without a Christian majority – which?
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Photo by Alina Grubnyak on Unsplash
Mind & Brain

Do human beings have a magnetic sense? Biologists know other animals do. They think it helps creatures including bees, turtles and birds navigate through the world.

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