103 votes
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Could people perceive the color blue in ancient times?

If Homer talks about the dark-wine sea, it seems he also talks about the "blue eyebrows of Poseidon". You can read here about Homer's colorful descriptions that helped orators remember the verses of ...
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89 votes

Could people perceive the color blue in ancient times?

The first claim is based on the research of Berlin and Kay "Basic Color Terms", which posits the hypothesis that languages evolve colour terms in the following order, and therefore that ancient ...
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67 votes
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Do methamphetamines give more pleasure than other human experiences?

It's somewhat simplistic view that dopamine is directly proportional with pleasure. This was a mainstream hypothesis in the 1980s, but has fallen out of favor: The idea that dopamine was a mechanism ...
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63 votes
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Are obese patients in the US commonly sent to zoos for CT scans?

A 2011 literature review looked at the problem as it related to one particular condition: Difficulties in diagnosing pulmonary embolism in the obese patient: A literature review. They conclude that ...
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  • 133k
56 votes

Can video games cause seizures?

Yes, video games can cause seizures, even in people without a prior history. For example, as described in the 1994 paper Video game induced seizures: Fifteen patients who experienced epileptic ...
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  • 22.8k
32 votes

Could people perceive the color blue in ancient times?

Ancient Hebrew has the word תכלת for blue (or more specifically, azure), as attested to in the Bible: Numbers 15:38: Speak to the children of Israel and you shall say to them that they shall make for ...
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20 votes
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Do firstborns have a higher IQ?

Birth order does not influence IQ but social rank in the family does. Birth order is not associated with intelligence in between-family data once the number of siblings is statistically controlled. ...
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  • 2,856
20 votes
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Is the Eye of Horus symbol based on the human brain?

Short answer: Most certainly no, but as so often, it's impossible to prove a negative. The Cultural Meaning of the Brain There are many descriptions of how the brain was discarded during mummification,...
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15 votes

Could people perceive the color blue in ancient times?

This addresses the second claim. There are 4 types of photoreceptive neurons in your eye. One is the rod, which is sensitive to green but creates a black/white percept (for "scotopic" or night-...
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  • 259
13 votes
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Can anyone function on just 2 hours sleep per night?

Short version: A short-sleep human phenotype has been described in the literature. However, the reported sleep times I found in the scientific literature for those people are around 6h / day vs. 8h ...
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12 votes
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Does eating grains cause alzheimer's?

The cause for most Alzheimer's cases is still mostly unknown except for 1% to 5% of cases where genetic differences have been identified. According to the Alzheimer's Association: While scientists ...
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12 votes
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Is addiction a disease?

Yes https://www.centeronaddiction.org/what-addiction/addiction-disease Addiction is defined as a disease by most medical associations, including the American Medical Association and the American ...
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10 votes
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Are male and female brains connected in a completely different manner?

Is this image "lying", not showing both types of connections for both genders? The article claims scientific accuracy and to report a scientific paper: does this image represent its conclusions in a ...
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  • 11.1k
10 votes

Are obese patients in the US commonly sent to zoos for CT scans?

There is anecdotal evidence to support the notion that some obese patients might have been referred to a zoo. Here is a recent NY Times article that explores the standard of care obese patients are ...
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  • 6,972
8 votes

Does bilingualism prevent Alzheimer's?

First, I want to stress the fact that there is difference between delaying and preventing. The articles I have read online claim that bilingualism may delay Alzheimer's progression. Those claims are ...
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  • 29.8k
8 votes

Could people perceive the color blue in ancient times?

Concerning the second claim, the differences seem to be cultural/linguistic, not genetic according to this article from the American Psychological Association: The study tracked color naming, ...
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8 votes
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Does it take 30 seconds for a person to consciously realize that they're awake?

The problem is that even specialists in this field of sleep medicine use terms like "awake" or "arousal" with different meanings. In the sentence emphasized in the question "awake" almost certainly ...
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8 votes
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Does listening to classical music "Improve Cognitive Function"?

Yes, though the improvement is not direct, not large, and not just from classical music. Listening to any emotionally positive music has been shown to improve a subject's mood, which in turn has ...
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  • 11.4k
8 votes

Can video games cause seizures?

Yes. Unlike television or movies, video games are an interactive medium, giving each player a different experience. This unpredictability makes it difficult for developers to catch potentially seizure-...
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7 votes

Did Jason Padgett become a math genius after getting hit on the head?

Jason Padgett acquired a new and unique skill/ability of drawing mathematical fractals after getting hit on the head which is known as a phenomenon called acquired savant syndrome. Savant syndrome is ...
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  • 22.5k
7 votes

Will rats given the ability to artificially stimulate their pleasure centers starve to death?

A version of this claim is present on Wikipedia: Experiments have shown rats will forgo food to the point of starvation in order to work for brain stimulation or intravenous cocaine when both ...
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6 votes

Could people perceive the color blue in ancient times?

I found the following words in the Latin dictionary at http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/ caesĭtĭus (-cĭus ), a, um, adj. id., I. [select] bluish, dark blue: “linteolum,” Plaut. Ep 2, 2, 46; cf. Doed. ...
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6 votes
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Are Facebook Likes similar to cocaine addiction?

** EDITED to reflect edits to the question and discussion in comments. ** Everything in the article seems credible, and doesn't seem to contradict other sources. It does seem guilty of ...
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6 votes

Does birth control decrease gray matter in the brain?

Oral Contraceptives actually increases gray matter. According to 50 years of hormonal contraception—time to find out, what it does to our brain (Belinda A. Pletzer and Hubert H. Kerschbaum), areas of ...
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  • 2,112
6 votes
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Does converting handedness lead to memory disorders?

Current evidence: Non-dominant hand training activates the dormant motor control areas in the brain. The path from brain to dominant hand is well-traveled, she explains. But when a person starts ...
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6 votes

Is MSG excitotoxic?

There doesn't seem to be any evidence for this. Here is one study: Conventional toxicity studies using dietary administration of MSG in several species did not reveal any specific toxic or ...
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  • 50.6k
6 votes
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Is sleep "defragmentation" for your brain?

There is a plethora of scientific work that all points towards sleep being very important for the kind of cleanup and reorganisation you are referring to. Information like this is readily available e....
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5 votes

Do we dream every night?

Yes, we (adults) dream more than once every night. The University of Californa has a Dream Research team. Their FAQ explains: How often do we dream, and when? Most people over the age of 10 dream at ...
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  • 133k
5 votes

Could people perceive the color blue in ancient times?

To clarify, I see four claims you are skeptical about: Ancient people literally were not able to perceive the color blue. The linked article states: Greeks lived in a murky and muddy world, ...
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