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Social Networks

Facebook Users Get Lower Grades In College 284

Hugh Pickens writes "According to a survey of college students Facebook users have lower overall grades than non-users. The study by Aryn Karpinski, an education researcher at Ohio State University, found that Facebook user GPAs are in the 3.0 to 3.5 range on average, compared to 3.5 to 4.0 for non-users and that Facebook users also studied anywhere from one to five hours per week, compared to non-users who studied 11 to 15 or more hours per week. Karpinski emphasized that correlation does not equal causation and that the grades association could be caused by something else. 'I'm just saying that there's some kind of relationship there, and there's many third variables that need to be studied.' One hypothesis is that students who spend more time enjoying themselves rather than studying might tend to latch onto the nearest distraction, such as Facebook or that students who use the social networking site might also spend more time on other non-studying activities such as sports or music. 'It may be that if it wasn't for Facebook, some students would still find other ways to avoid studying, and would still get lower grades. But perhaps the lower GPAs could actually be because students are spending too much time socializing online.' As for herself, Karpinski said she doesn't have a Facebook account, although the co-author of the study does. 'For me, I think Facebook is a huge distraction.'"

First Official Photos From New Star Trek Movie 410

Philias Fog writes "The most secret project in Hollywood is finally lifting its skirt. Today Paramount released a number of images for their new Star Trek movie directed by JJ Abrams. Shots include images of the bridge of the Enterprise, the villain Nero, a ship (not the Enterprise) and all of the crew in uniform. has a complete set of photos and links to all the new shots."

Internet Use Can Be Good For the Brain 114

ddelmonte writes "This Washington Post article examines a test conducted at UCLA. The test had two groups, young people who used the Internet, and older people who had never been online. Both groups were asked to do Internet searches and book reading tasks while their brain activity was monitored. 'We found that in reading the book task, the visual cortex — the part of the brain that controls reading and language — was activated,' Small said. 'In doing the Internet search task, there was much greater activity, but only in the Internet-savvy group.' He said it appears that people who are familiar with the Internet can engage in a much deeper level of brain activity. 'There is something about Internet searching where we can gauge it to a level that we find challenging,' Small said. In the aging brain, atrophy and reduced cell activity can take a toll on cognitive function. Activities that keep the brain engaged can preserve brain health and thinking ability. Small thinks learning to do Internet searches may be one of those activities."

Researchers Claim To Be Able To Determine Political Leaning By How Messy You Are Screenshot-sm 592

According to a study to be published in The Journal of Political Psychology, you can tell someone's political affiliation by looking at the condition of their offices and bedrooms. Conservatives tend to be neat and liberals love a mess. Researchers found that the bedrooms and offices of liberals tend to be colorful and full of books about travel, ethnicity, feminism and music, along with music CDs covering folk, classic and modern rock, as well as art supplies, movie tickets and travel memorabilia. Their conservative contemporaries, on the other hand, tend to surround themselves with calendars, postage stamps, laundry baskets, irons and sewing materials. Their bedrooms and offices are well lit and decorated with sports paraphernalia and flags — especially American ones. Sam Gosling, an associate professor of psychology at the University of Texas at Austin, says these room cues are "behavioral residue." The findings are just the latest in a series of recent attempts to unearth politics in personality, the brain and DNA. I, for one, support a woman's right to clean.

It is easier to change the specification to fit the program than vice versa.