I have a tendency to refer to data from the Monitoring the Future study with some frequency. Unfortunately I’ve been too lazy to post the critical data figures for your entertainment. Until today DearReader.
One example of which I am particularly fond, is what I call the “Len Bias effect” on the public perception of “risk” associated with casual use of cocaine. I refer to this so often because of the casual sneering response I (and others of my approximate generation) retain for the “Just Say No” program championed by Nancy Reagan in the mid-80s. The MtF data suggest to me at any rate that our “gut feeling” that these types of programs are stupid should be more nuanced.

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One of the kids over at bayblab wants a shot at the title and so s/he’s thrown down a little smack. Tried to start some beef with ScienceBlogs. The main critiques appear to be the fact that SB bloggers get paid and that SB bloggers aren’t science-y enough. Bayblab contributor bayman amps it up:

You might also have entitled that post – “How ScienceBlogs Is Killing Blogging”.

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Propter Doc published an interesting post today concerning her to-do list, which she characterized as more of a pyramid:

At the top there is a task, with some kind of importance. Not necessarily the most important thing to me, but someone has told me that I must do that before all other tasks. So then it becomes the apex of the pyramid. Immediately below it, on the next level, are the couple of that I think are important or urgent. The ones that are important to me. The next level is populated by those tasks that are on the horizon, not yet important but still demanding of some attention. Now, the problem starts when that top task becomes difficult for some reason. In this pyramid scheme I’m not allowed to move beyond the top level until the task there is complete.

She recognizes that this is counterproductive, as it keeps her from getting to what is really important for fulfilling her professional goals as an academic scientist. Some thoughts on how to construct a more self-fulfilling to-do system are below the fold.

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More on Adderall Abuse

February 26, 2008

Jonah Lehrer has a piece up on The Frontal Cortex pointing to an entry from n+1 on the diversion of prescription Adderall® for non-treatment purposes in college students. There’s also an older piece on Slate which can only be described as a trip report. Adderall is prescribed, you may know, for amelioration of symptoms associated with Attention Deficit / Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).
Jonah says:

Adderall is a composite of several different amphetamines, which are digested by the brain at different rates.

while over at n+1 we read:

The drug comes in a gleaming capsule, blue or tangerine colored, and it can be swallowed or sprinkled over cafeteria applesauce. It is made of equal portions of four amphetamines, all of which the body metabolizes at different rates, and which are packaged in tiny rotund beads that dissolve at varied speeds, so the effect is consistent. A 10-milligram capsule lasts about six hours and a 20-milligram capsule doubles the duration.

These statements may give a slightly incorrect impression.

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As a brief update on my posts on the clinical use of MDMA (Part 1, Part 2) I’ll note that the MAPS folks are trumpeting the initiation of yet another clinical trial with extra oomph because it is at dear auld Haavahd.

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In the midst of World War I, Wolfgang Köhler conducted a famous series of experiments to investigate problem solving ability in chimpanzees. The lasting impression of these experiments, reinforced by just about every introductory Psychology text, was Köhler’s assertion that the chimps demonstrated “insightful” learning.
Did they now?

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In the midst of World War I, Wolfgang Köhler conducted a famous series of experiments to investigate problem solving ability in chimpanzees. The lasting impression of these experiments, reinforced by just about every introductory Psychology text, was Köhler’s assertion that the chimps demonstrated “insightful” learning.
Did they now?

Read the rest of this entry »