Thursday, May 24, 2007

Them wacky scientists!

To alleviate boredom at work, I've subscribed to several RSS feeds on Google Reader from some of the more popular science magazines/journals such as Scientific American & Science Daily. Having always been curious about all facets of science at a young age but not quite having the discipline or patience to learn about it fully, I never chose a science-related career path. Instead, I chose the arts. However, it is always interesting to know what new frontiers our scientist brothers and sisters have forged but sometimes after reading these headlines, it just makes me shake my head. Check out some of these nuggets from the past few days:

Personality More Important Than Job Satisfaction In Determining Job Performance Success
I understand the merit of this particular project but who said let's spend X amount of time and money to gather proof on something that I think should be widely assumed already. It's so common sense that any good manager should see it right away without needing the results of such a study to direct his/her interactions with subordinates. I say, if as a manager you don't know this, then you do not have the personality to be a fully successful and effective manager. Which, is fine, because many mediocre people get to the top. It's a fact of life. It's how long before their fall or how much they struggle to prevent that which makes life so interesting.

Finger Length Helps Predict Elementary Exam Results, Study Shows
Excuse me? Are we living in the 21st century? Okay. The article does go on to mention that there is a correlation between finger length and brain development in areas that coorespond to spatial and mathematical skills possibly because of testosterone and oestrogen levels in the womb which can affect both. So after leading to that intermediate conclusion, why dwell on the finger length and coming up with a digit ratio? If a relationship can be found on a chemical level, then how about just determining a prenatal hormon exposure ratio? They say digit ratio cannot replace SAT scores but it will be an interesting insight in relation to other behaviors such as technophobia, choices in career path or developmental disorders. I just don't understand how the relation of the digit ratio actually matters? Hopefully this was just a journalistic choice to make for a quirky read. Maybe the actual study is more about the hormones. One can only hope.

Clues to Mysteries of Physical Attractiveness Revealed
Here's the short feed, I'm not even gonna bother commenting:
"Score one for body language: It seems that body shape and the way people walk hold major cues to their attractiveness to others, according to new research. The attractiveness ratings for perceived women increased by about 50 percent when they walked with hip sway, and attractiveness ratings for perceived men more than doubled when they walked with a swagger in their shoulders."

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