Read — 2013/10/18

by shwolff

Today’s selection of articles includes:

  1. Sleep: The Brain’s Housekeeper?“, by Emily Underwood (Science). A summary of a recent Science article (“Sleep Drives Metabolite Clearance from the Adult Brain“, by Xie et al.) finding that glial channels, which “transpor[t] waste-laden cerebrospinal fluid”, expand 60% during sleep in mice. While there is still much research to be done, these findings are consistent with the hypothesis that sleep deprivation causes brain damage.
  2. Reading Literary Fiction Improves Theory of Mind“, by David Kidd & Emanuele Castano (Science). The authors report results from five studies suggesting that reading fiction improves performance on Theory of Mind (ToM) tests, both affective ToM (“the ability to detect and understand others’ emotions”) and cognitive ToM (“the inference and representation of others’ beliefs and intentions”).
  3. The Godfather, Part II“, by Sophia Roosth (Science). A review of J. Craig Venter’s new book, Life at the Speed of Light: From the Double Helix to the Dawn of Digital Life.
  4. Snowden Says He Took No Secret Files to Russia“, by James Risen (NY Times).
  5. The High-End Matchmaking Service for Tycoons“, by Dan Crane (NY Times). Being rich doesn’t solve those the problem of finding your soul mate — but it does let you hire pricey specialists.