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Features

The Neuroscience of Reality
Behavior & Society

The Neuroscience of Reality

Reality is constructed by the brain, and no two brains are exactly alike

By Anil K. Seth
Why Your First Idea Can Blind You to a Better One
Cognition

Why Your First Idea Can Blind You to a Better One

While we are working through a problem, the brain’s tendency to stick with familiar ideas can literally blind us to superior solutions

By Merim Bilalić and Peter McLeod
How to Think about 'Implicit Bias'
Behavior & Society

How to Think about 'Implicit Bias'

Amidst a controversy, it’s important to remember that implicit bias is real—and it matters

By Keith Payne, Laura Niemi and John M. Doris
How Misinformation Spreads--and Why We Trust It
Behavior & Society

How Misinformation Spreads--and Why We Trust It

The most effective misinformation starts with seeds of truth

By Cailin O'Connor and James Owen Weatherall
When Assessing Novel Risks, Facts Are Not Enough
Behavior & Society

When Assessing Novel Risks, Facts Are Not Enough

How we make decisions in the face of incomplete knowledge and uncertainty

By Baruch Fischhoff
How to Get Better at Embracing Unknowns
Behavior & Society

How to Get Better at Embracing Unknowns

How to interpret uncertainty in common forms of data visualization

By Jessica Hullman
Which Experts Should You Listen to during the Pandemic?
Behavior & Society

Which Experts Should You Listen to during the Pandemic?

It should be a no-brainer: your best bet is to follow those who have actual expertise

By Nathan Ballantyne and David Dunning
Misinformation Has Created a New World Disorder
Computing

Misinformation Has Created a New World Disorder

Our willingness to share content without thinking is exploited to spread disinformation

By Claire Wardle
Why Social Media Became the Perfect Incubator for Hoaxes and Misinformation
Behavior & Society

Why Social Media Became the Perfect Incubator for Hoaxes and Misinformation

Data scientists are studying how information spreading online influences our social dynamics and what, if anything, can be done to smooth polarization

By Walter Quattrociocchi
The Shared Past That Wasn't
Behavior & Society

The Shared Past That Wasn't

How Facebook, fake news and friends are altering memories and changing history

By Laura Spinney
Clicks, Lies and Videotape
Computing

Clicks, Lies and Videotape

Artificial intelligence is making it possible for anyone to manipulate audio and video. The biggest threat is that we stop trusting anything at all

By Brooke Borel
How to Defraud Democracy
Computing

How to Defraud Democracy

A worst-case cyberwarfare scenario for the 2020 American presidential election

By J. Alex Halderman and Jen Schwartz
Are Toxic Political Conversations Changing How We Feel about Objective Truth?
Behavior & Society

Are Toxic Political Conversations Changing How We Feel about Objective Truth?

As political polarization grows, the arguments we have with one another may be shifting our understanding of truth itself

By Matthew Fisher, Joshua Knobe, Brent Strickland and Frank C. Keil
Post-Truth: A Guide for the Perplexed
Behavior & Society

Post-Truth: A Guide for the Perplexed

If politicians can lie without condemnation, what are scientists to do?

By Kathleen Higgins and Nature magazine
Why People "Fly from Facts"
Behavior & Society

Why People "Fly from Facts"

Research shows the appeal of untestable beliefs and how they lead to a polarized society

By Troy Campbell and Justin Friesen
People Drawn to Conspiracy Theories Share a Cluster of Psychological Features
Behavior & Society

People Drawn to Conspiracy Theories Share a Cluster of Psychological Features

Baseless theories threaten our safety and democracy. It turns out that specific emotions make people prone to such thinking

By Melinda Wenner Moyer
Corruption Is Contagious
Behavior & Society

Corruption Is Contagious

Dishonesty begets dishonesty, rapidly spreading unethical behavior through a society

By Dan Ariely and Ximena Garcia-Rada
How to Overcome Antiscientific Thinking
Behavior & Society

How to Overcome Antiscientific Thinking

Convincing people who doubt the validity of climate change and evolution to change their beliefs requires overcoming a set of ingrained cognitive biases

By Douglas T. Kenrick, Adam B. Cohen, Steven L. Neuberg and Robert B. Cialdini
How Professional Truth Seekers Search for Answers
Policy & Ethics

How Professional Truth Seekers Search for Answers

Nine experts describe how they sort signal from noise

By Brooke Borel
The Truth about Scientific Models
Policy & Ethics

The Truth about Scientific Models

They don’t necessarily try to predict what will happen—but they can help us understand possible futures

By Sabine Hossenfelder
The Significant Problem of P Values
Policy & Ethics

The Significant Problem of P Values

Standard scientific methods are under fire. Will anything change?

By Lydia Denworth
Why People Refuse to Believe Scientists
Behavior & Society

Why People Refuse to Believe Scientists

It has nothing to do with science itself

By Katharine Hayhoe and Jen Schwartz
Can Scientists Convince the Public to Accept CRISPR and Gene Drives?
Biotech

Can Scientists Convince the Public to Accept CRISPR and Gene Drives?

Scientists are trying new ways to win over a skeptical public

By Brooke Borel
Special Report

Innovations In

How Much Can We Know?
Cognition

How Much Can We Know?

The reach of the scientific method is constrained by the limitations of our tools and the intrinsic impenetrability of some of nature's deepest questions

By Marcelo Gleiser

Departments

  • From the Editor

    21st-Century Gaslighting

  • The Science Agenda

    Everyone Is an Agent in the New Information Warfare

  • Anti Gravity

    Even If We Knew Everything That Can Be Known, We Wouldn't Know It All  

  • The Intersection

    More Data Don't Necessarily Help You Make Small Decisions  

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