Learning! Roundup: Self-enhancement bias, coral reef healing, sleep some more, saving lemurs, and more!

Photo by Yanguang Lan.

Moral Superiority

It probably isn't a surprise these days to learn that most humans have a cognitive bias wherein they believe in their own moral superiority. It's a part of a general self-enhancement view where we tend to see ourselves as better than average on things: looks, intelligence, and now, apparently, morality. Of course, we can't all be better than average, so... Who's wrong? Not me, obviously.

Coral Reef Healing

The Great Barrier Reef could be healed by a "super-spreader" coral reef! Researchers are looking into seeding these resilient reefs around the nearly-dead Great Barrier Reef. Fingers crossed!

Sleep Some More

Want to get just a little bit more sleep? One trick is literally to go to bed sooner so you have more time in which you could sleep. It's called your "sleep opportunity", and if you make sure you're in bed with the lights off for at least, say, 8 hours then you know you will probably sleep for at least 7. It's a really obvious life hack. (If you're not a theatre nerd, I will let you know that this headline is a reference to the hit New York play Sleep No More. There, my nerdy theatre joke is explained!)

Save the Lemurs!

Madagascar's ring-tailed lemurs are in trouble, guys! The population has dropped down below 3,000!

Who Reads Articles Anymore?

A new study confirms what we all knew to be true: Redditors don't actually read the articles they vote on. I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest that this phenomenon is not confined to Reddit, and that maybe most of us also browse headlines more often than we read articles, too. I know I do, that's why I've started to make myself speak more accurately about articles I've "read", instead of saying "I read an article about...", I say, "I read a headline and synopsis about..." Honesty, guys. It's embarrassing.

Basic Income

Ontario is testing basic income! I am really stoked on this idea, where every citizen of a country/city/province gets some flat amount of money just to live. Sure, some inflation would happen, but if you're careful, the benefit wouldn't be entirely subsumed. So far the other experiments out there suggest it reduces social costs significantly. Let's DO IT!

Family Ties

If someone ever uses a "think of the children" argument to support their prejudice against non-traditional families, you can just tell them to go sit in a corner and think about the lies they are spreading. There are some studies showing harm to children raised by (for example) same-sex parents, but those have been thoroughly debunked, and the scientific consensus is that it really doesn't matter. The kids are alright. More than half of the kids in the US and UK are being raised outside traditional families, and everyone's doing great.


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