I was browsing Digg today when I happened upon this Cracked article which talks about different illusions in neuroscience and does a pretty decent job explaining them in a humorous, mostly-accurate way. I found their description of change blindness to be particularly funny.
I only had one bone to pick with their post (and it’s only a technical note): they discuss (what must be) Changizi et al (2008)‘s predictive model of visual illusions as though it is the established understanding of how these illusions operate. Additionally, the assertion that scientists, by dunking electrodes in your brain, “could tell you–with 100% accuracy–what decision you’ll make a few seconds from now” is obviously still too sci-fi for my liking. But that’s just nit-picking – I think this is a great article, and that it has the potential to generate at least a tiny bit of interest in neuroscience to some of the people who will read it. Any time a scientific topic can be cast in a way so as to garner attention it wouldn’t otherwise receive is a great opportunity to capture the interest of a new population. Bill Nye is fantastic in this regard – much of my current interest in science goes back to when I used to watch is show every day after school at my grandparents’ house. Before him, Carl Sagan was a hero to hundreds, if not thousands, of young soon-to-be scientists. As I’ve mentioned before, Robert Krulwich and Jad Abumrad also do a great job with their work on Radio Lab in reaching to a more mainstream (well, public radio) audience.
After looking around a little further, I found this other post they did a short while back about the psychology of advertising, providing lots of good, colorful examples throughout.
Do you have any other favorite science posts/articles/shows/podcasts that reach in creative ways? Leave a comment, or email me at neurotechnica on gmail.