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links for 2010-05-16

  • Quote:"The genes appear to protect people against the effects of smoking and bad diet and can also delay the onset of age-related illnesses such as cancer and heart disease by up to three decades.

    No single gene is a guaranteed fountain of youth. Instead, the secret of longevity probably lies in having the right “suite” of genes, according to new studies of centenarians and their families. Such combinations are extremely rare — only one person in 10,000 reaches the age of 100.

    // Sweet; so maybe someday gene therapy will allow us all to smoke…

  • Quote:"The AP-GfK Poll was conducted May 7-11 by GfK Roper Public Affairs & Media. It involved cell and landline telephone interviews with 1,002 randomly chosen adults and has a margin of sampling error of plus or minus 4.3 percentage points.

    // Key phrase: Random Adult. Not registered voters, not likely voters. it's a midterm election, these things really matter.

  • Quote:"To test their idea that mixed groups would benefit survival, Ein-Dor and his colleagues put students in groups of threes alone in a room with a concealed smoke machine, which was switched on to simulate a fire. Groups were quicker to notice the smoke and to react to it if they contained individuals who scored high for insecure attachment.

    // Evolutionary psychology, where you only have to make things sound reasonable (this one does incluse an experiment, but the experiment has some confounds)

  • Quote:"Overall, the study found that access to the Internet leads people to feel better about their lives. "Put simply, people with IT access are more satisfied with life even when taking account of income," said Michael Willmott, the social scientist who authored the study, at a press conference. "Our analysis suggests that IT has an enabling and empowering role in people's lives, by increasing their sense of freedom and control, which has a positive impact on well-being or happiness."

    // Happy, and pathetic. Assuming happiness is the end-all of goals. Drugs can make people really happy too. It's a Brave New World.

  • Quote:"It's most likely the nonprofits aren't aware of the Monday deadline that only applies to groups that report $25,000 or less in income, excluding churches. Those organizations may not find out until Jan. 1, 2011, when they're notified they have to pay taxes on donations they thought were exempt. And it could be months before their nonprofit status is restored.

    Congress required the form, called a 990-N, when it amended the tax code three years ago and groups with a fiscal year ending Dec. 31 had until Monday to meet the deadline.

    // Just FYI

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