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Empathy Is For the Birds 201

grrlscientist writes "Common Ravens have been shown to express empathy towards a 'friend' or relative when they are distressed after an aggressive conflict — just like humans and chimpanzees do. But birds are very distant evolutionary relatives of Great Apes, so what does this similarity imply about the evolution of behavior?"

Comment Re:Not a black mark (Score 1) 467

Say you play video poker in Vegas. Are the cards not dealt completely randomly? Do the previous cards dealt affect the cards dealt in the next round? Is the game not completely analogous to if somebody dealt you the cards in real life from a well shuffled deck? To my best knowledge that is how video poker machines should work according to the law. And there isn't any need for them to work in any other way because the pay tables make sure that the casino will win on the long run.
It's funny.  Laugh.

Human Laughter Up To 16 Million Years Old 149

An anonymous reader writes "Published today in the journal Current Biology, a new study shows that laughter is not a unique human trait, but a behavior shared by all great apes. Tickle a baby chimpanzee and it will giggle just like a human infant. This is because laughter evolved millions of years ago in one of our common ancestors, say scientists."

More Fake Journals From Elsevier 249

daemonburrito writes "Last week, we learned about Elsevier publishing a bogus journal for Merck. Now, several librarians say that they have uncovered an entire imprint of 'advertorial' publications. Excerpta Medica, a 'strategic medical communications agency,' is an Elsevier division. Along with the now infamous Australasian Journal of Bone and Joint Medicine, it published a number of other 'journals.' Elsevier CEO Michael Hansen now admits that at least six fake journals were published for pharmaceutical companies."

New "Terminator" Trilogy Planned 303

Ant writes "Dark Horizons reports after much talk and posturing over the future of "The Terminator" franchise/series in recent years, something surprising has happened: The Halcyon Company has acquired the franchise rights to the popular movie series and intends to make a new trilogy that would anchor their movie company..."

Must We Click To Interact? 177

Rockgod writes, "Here is an interesting experiment (warning: heavy Flash!!) that urges you not to click anywhere in the site yet wants you to navigate through it. It's an exploration of the clicking habit of computer users and aims to help understand why it is so hard not to click." The site records the mouse movements of each visitor and offers you a sample of them to replay. Doing so is a little unnerving, like peering into people's minds.

What Would We Lose From a Regionalized Internet? 433

Vegan Pagan asks: "If the internet was separated into regions, how much would you lose? How often do you visit other countries' web sites? How often do you e-mail people in other countries? Do you ever search in a language other than English, and if you do, how often does it turn up foreign vs domestic sites? What would foreigners lose by not being able to visit US-hosted sites, and how quickly would they be able to recreate what they lost? What other process that we are not normally aware of depend on a borderless internet? I find that although I often read in-depth news about other countries, the sites I get that news from are usually hosted in USA, and I only bother to read in English. Would the Americans who report world news be hindered by a segregated internet, or do they already have the means to overcome such barriers? How much more expensive and complicated would it be to access sites outside of 'your' internet, and how much slower would it be?"

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This is clearly another case of too many mad scientists, and not enough hunchbacks.