Filed under: Culture

With no TV, we wouldn’t necessarily exercise more

TV is linked to so many unhealthy things (for making you feel less satisfied with life and increasing your risk of heart disease), so I found this research from Ohio State University interesting: while TV’s often seen as evil, our favourite TV shows can play an important role in our lives.

Say if Mad Men were to go off the air? For some of us who have developed a strong connection to characters, this would be particularly distressing. And the study found it’s not as though we’d be likely to start being more socially and physically active. In fact, we’re more likely to start watching reruns of the show or surf the net.

Leave a Comment April 21, 2011

What I’m reading: How Did You Get This Number?

For the first time I understood why people come back from Alaska with fifty pictures of glaciers or return from a honeymoon in Tahiti with fifty pictures of the same sunset. The world is so beautiful in these places, it is impossible to register that there will be more, more, more. Surely this is it. Negotiate with your ailing camera battery. How can it not stay alive for this? How can you believe that twenty minutes from now there will be an even taller forest, an even wider waterfall? We are only as good as our most extreme experiences.

(A paragraph I particularly like from Sloane Crosley’s new book, How Did You Get This Number?)

Leave a Comment February 15, 2011

Music stirs up emotional response

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XtQHaUKo9Vc&feature=fvsr]

New research published in the journal PlOs One has pinpointed the factors of a musical performance that cause a shift in your emotions and how this affects our brain activity after a moving performance.

To conduct the study, participants listened to both a recording of a piece of music performed by an expert musician on a computerized piano, and then to the same song, only this time it was a synthesized version created by a computer. The two had the same musical elements however the one performed by the musician featured the dynamic changes in tempo and loudness,  contrasts that pianists use to evoke an emotional response. And it was proven that the human touch–the pianist’s recorded performance–stirred up the emotional neural centres of the brain more than the mechanical performance.

And I am sure that is why I enjoyed this NKOTBSB performance as much as I did.

2 Comments December 21, 2010

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