Items tagged with Study

Today's video games can cost more to make than a blockbuster movie. The level of graphical detail is pretty amazing in some cases, and when you throw in ambient sound effects and an engaging storyline, it's easy to be sucked into a virtual world. It shouldn't really be surprising, then, that college students enjoy being scared by horror games, according to a recent study.What's perhaps eye opening, however, is that researchers in the U.S. found that playing games scares people more than watching movies. That's based on the findings of assistant professor Nicole Martins and student Teresa Lynch... Read more...
We always knew that watching videos of cats was good for a few laughs, hence why so many of our work days are interrupted by having to watching "just one more clip." If that sounds familiar, don't beat yourself up over it -- a new study in the journal Computers in Human Behavior suggests that watching videos of cats may also be good for your health. The study pinged nearly 7,000 people and asked them how viewing cat videos affected their moods. Of those surveyed, over a third (36 percent) described themselves as a "cat person" and nearly two-thirds (60 percent) said they have an affinity for both... Read more...
Consider it an unfortunate sign of the times we live in that companies have to set aside enormous funds to contend with the cost of cyber related crimes. We're not talking chump change here -- according to a study by security firm Ponemon Institute that was funded by International Business Machines, the average cost of a data breach is now $3.8 million. That's up from $3.5 million a year ago and includes fees for investigating the breach, hiring experts to fix whatever security issue the hackers exploited, offering credit monitoring services for affected customers, and so forth. It adds up fast... Read more...
At this point, the resetting of a mobile phone to a from-the-factory state is something we have all done, perhaps simply to get a fresh start with a device that has become sluggish and over-burdened with years of downloaded flotsam. But more likely, we do it for the purpose of selling the phone or passing it along to a friend or family member. We rely on such a reset to completely wipe the phone of any trace of our having used it, all settings and sensitive data. The results of a study performed in the UK by University of Cambridge researchers entitled Security Analysis of Android... Read more...
For whatever reason, there are certain songs that, once heard, tend to play over and over again in your head. It's quite annoying, and try as you might, there's no easy way to purge the unwanted tune from memory, or so we've always thought. Well, guess what? Not only is it possible to get one of these so called "earworms" to wiggle on out, it's as simple as chewing on a stick of gum. So says a new study on the subject conducted by researchers at the University of Reading's Centre for Cognition Research and School of Psychology & Clinical Language Sciences. What the study found was that chewing... Read more...
It's said that a single bad apple can ruin the whole bunch, but Internet trolls are even worse. They not only ruin what could have been an engaging discussion on an interesting topic with intelligent individuals, but they often manage to go undetected until that moment when all hell breaks loose. And then the ban hammer drops, sometimes taking out good members who got caught up in a flame war. Turns out this doesn't have to be the case. Researchers from Stanford University and Cornell University studied online discussions from news site CNN, political site Breitbart, and gaming... Read more...
By now it's been beaten into all of our heads that text messaging or otherwise farting around on a mobile phone while driving is a bad idea. Study after study shows that bad things are prone to happen when we take our eyes off the road and fixate them on our phones or other objects, but according to research by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, the problem is worse than previously thought. Far worse. In what's being billed as the most comprehensive research ever conducted into crash videos of teen drivers, it was found that distraction as a whole was a factor in nearly 6 out of 10 moderate-to-severe... Read more...
If you grew up watching The Jetsons like I did, you might have thought we'd all be commuting in flying cars by now. We're still a long ways from that kind of technology, though in its place are self-driving cars like the ones Google has been experimenting with. According to a new study, it won't be all that long before autonomous vehicles become a part of everyday life. Not only that, but we'll have lots of reasons to kick back and sing "Everything is Awesome" as our self-driving cars whiz through traffic and deliver us all to our destinations safely and more efficiently than we're currently able... Read more...
New research from the University of Missouri has found that iPhone separation can have "serious psychological and physiological effects," with participants showing poor performance on cognitive tests when not in possession of their Apple device. However, the way the study was conducted, it may not be the actual separation from an iPhone that affects people, but the inability to answer a ringing device. "Our findings suggest that iPhone separation can negatively impact performance on mental tasks," Russell Clayton, a doctoral candidate at the MU School of Journalism and lead author of the study,... Read more...
Here's a not-so-fun fact for your Friday workday -- there are 9 incidents per million users per day involving "manual hijacking," which is when professional attackers spend considerable time exploiting a single victim's account, often causing financial losses, Google says. Though they're not the most prominent types of attack, they're often severe in nature. This is one of the things that Google monitors, and by studying this type of hacker, the company has been able to improve its defenses against not only manual hijacks, but all kinds of hijacking. According to Google, it's been able to reduce... Read more...
Give a kid a pack of Oreo cookies and he'll feast for a few minutes. But offer the same kid an iPad for his stash of sweets and he'll gladly make that trade, spending the next several hours staring and tapping at a brightly lit LCD screen. We know this because the iPad is now the No. 1 brand among children ages 6-12, according to findings from the 2014 Young Love study, the nation's largest survey of brands among youth and families. The annual study ranks more than 250 brands each year and includes heavy-hitting names like McDonald's, Toys"R"Us, Nickelodeon, Disney, Super Mario, Cartoon Network,... Read more...
It's not uncommon to pull up next to a car that's been driving erratically only to find that the driver is distracted with a smartphone. Hey, it's a sign of the times we live in, and while banning the use of handheld electronics while driving is one solution, hands-free operation is emerging as a compromise. Unfortunately, studies are finding that talking to your car may not be a safer alternative. In fact, there are at least two recent studies that suggest the problem of distracted driving is even worse when using voice-activated smartphones and dashboard infotainment systems, the Associated Press... Read more...
Still find yourself pissed off at Facebook for potentially messing with your head when it experimented on 700,000 users without their consent? Hey, it's all good, brother -- Facebook CTO Mike Schroepfer posted a set of new guidelines that will help the world's largest social network do a better job at monkeying around with your brain. Honest. Are you lost? Let's back up a moment. Facebook published a paper this past summer revealing that it ran an "emotional contagion" experiment on hundreds of thousands of Facebook users without their knowledge or consent. In plain English, Facebook altered the... Read more...
If you or your spouse spend a lot of time on Facebook, it can be pretty scary to see a study suggest there's a correlation between heavy Facebook use and divorce. However, it's important to note the distinction between "correlation" and "causation," which is to say that spending an inordinate amount of time on Facebook or any other social network won't necessarily drive your marriage into the dumps. The study appears in the July 2014 edition of Computers in Human Behavior, and in it, the researchers looked at the rise of Facebook use and the rate of divorce on a state-by-state basis. What they... Read more...
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