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Tasty Research

a digest of fun and interesting academic research; all signal, no noise

Last Build Date: Wed, 24 Jan 2018 19:59:28 +0000


The Secret To Happinesstastyresearch

Mon, 29 Sep 2008 08:14:07 +0000

The American Dream tells us we are free to pursue happiness, but doesn’t give us instructions.  Even life-changing events such as winning the lottery have been shown (Brickman 1978) to only increase happiness in the short-term. The secret to long term happiness is a concept that seems too sacred to be studied and dissected. However, […]

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Blowable User InterfacetastyresearchBLUI image

Thu, 25 Oct 2007 00:13:40 +0000

I just got back from presenting a paper at UIST, a conference that I would describe as a forum for innovative sexy user interfaces. One of the more original talks I attended was by a Georgia Tech student who managed to create a blowable interface on a standard laptop. He takes an ordinary laptop (with no […]

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Do Opposites Attract or Do People Look For Similar Partners?tastyresearch

Sun, 26 Aug 2007 00:35:16 +0000

“Opposites attract” is the common response when you see a contrasting couple — a tall woman and a short man, or a party person with a quiet introvert. Yet we all know couples who have the similar personalities — they like the same restaurants or are both neat freaks. So are people attracted to those […]

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Hard Drive Failure Statistics at Googletastyresearch

Fri, 10 Aug 2007 01:40:47 +0000

Statistics about hard drives from Google’s data centers were published in USENIX, showing how different variables affect the failure rate of hard drives. AFR is “Annual Failure Rate”. The older drives may be failing more simply because they are a less advanced batch. Low, medium, and high specify the usage. Surprisingly, 35-45 degrees C is […]

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Firstborns have higher IQs than their siblingstastyresearchBirth order vs Intelligence

Wed, 04 Jul 2007 06:45:36 +0000

This short paper from Science reports tasty findings on the correlation between birth order and intelligence. While it’s generally accepted in the scientific community that older siblings generally have higher IQs due to different environmental influences, numerous possible factors make it tricky to prove causation from correlation. One criticism is that later siblings are likely […]

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Fluid Temperature has No Effect on Hydrationtastyresearch

Sat, 28 Apr 2007 17:53:27 +0000

We reach for a ice-cold beverages on a hot summer day to rehydrate ourselves in the sweltering sun. Frozen water bottles and ice coolers are used to avoid warm drinks, which seem to evaporate once they hit your mouth. Contrary to the practice of cooling or warming liquids to relieve your thirst, this study shows […]

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Americans Getting Loneliertastyresearch

Fri, 13 Apr 2007 05:45:43 +0000

In 1985, the General Social Survey reported that Americans had an average of 2.94 close friends (confidants is the term researchers like to use). A recent survey from 2004 found that the number of confidants has dropped to 2.08. In other words, Americans have lost on average one friend with whom they discuss important matters. The […]

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The effectiveness of self-imposed deadlines on procrastinationtastyresearchProcrastination Study

Tue, 26 Dec 2006 07:42:12 +0000

I often hear of graduate students postponing their research to do other things: play Tetris, read comments on Slashdot, or write a blog. We defer doing something “more important” to do something else and feel guilty and pleased at the same time. How sweet is it not to do work? Apparently, sweet enough to abate […]

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Comic Chattastyresearchp225-kurlander_page_04_image_0001.jpgp225-kurlander_page_05_image_0002.jpg

Mon, 04 Dec 2006 18:09:26 +0000

I remember using Comic Chat when I was in elementary school, trying it out with my new Internet Explorer install. It was the first chat program I had used, and thought it was both exciting and scary to be able to talk to complete strangers. Comic Chat is an application which generates comics from online […]

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The First Digit LawtastyresearchThe First Digit Law

Tue, 21 Nov 2006 05:57:02 +0000

If I were to pick a random city in the world, and tell you its population, what might the first digit of that number be? You may think there’s equal probability for the first digit to be 1 to 9, but over 30% of the time it’s 1 (one). Why? Think about it this way: let’s say a […]

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