witnessing a staged crime

The BBC apparently has conducted a remarkable study looking at how eyewitnesses remember a staged crime. Although this sort of stunt has been pulled many times in studies of eyewitness fallibility, this one took the approach and realism a step further than previous [...]

Invisible rabbits?!

Glendale police thinking that dressing pedestrians in rabbit suits will make drivers more likely to [...]

When less is more (memory limits and correlations)

A series of articles by Yaakov Kareev from the mid-late 1990s showing something remarkable: People with less working memory capacity are better able to detect moderately strong correlations (Kareev, 1995; Kareev et al, 1997; Kareev, 2000). Understanding why requires a bit of a digression into statistics. [...]

When simple cubes turn into a complex project

I will readily admit to being inordinately excited by modern furniture. My wife Michelle and I were influenced to buy our house by the sellers’ decision to include in the price several wonderful pieces, some of which I had been coveting for years. And I have always had fond memories of some simple but well-built, [...]

x-ray glasses

As a kid, I loved reading Boy’s Life Magazine, particularly the advertisements at the back of the magazine that promised amazing new abilities. My favorite ad, other than the promise of Sea Monkeys of course, was the advertisement for x-ray glasses. It looked something like this:

I knew, at some level, that these couldn’t work. [...]

Cracking up about patterns and cause

I just received an email from a contractor in Austria who described a legal problem that many contractors face. Apparently, demolition crews are sued regularly by homeowners for damage to nearby homes. After a blast that causes vibration in a house, homeowners search their house and discover big cracks. They then blame [...]