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Quick Bits #1

2010 January 14

I’ve decided to start a new regular feature called “Quick Bits.”  You see, there are often small stories that popup that are somewhat interesting but not really worth a whole blog post.  To deal with that, I’m going to collect them over time and periodically throw them all at you at once!  So here we are – Quick Bits #1.

  1. Kia, cooperating with Microsoft, is bringing more online technology to cars than ever before: get RSS feeds, weather reports, twitter and Facebook updates and more right from the driver’s seat.  Perhaps this will spark a manufacturer battle to stuff as much social tech into a car as possible.  I’m not sure if that’s a good or bad thing.
  2. The BBC reports that as people’s online lives become increasingly public, this could have an effect on the interpretation of privacy law in Britain, which is based on “reasonable expectations of privacy.”  As younger generations have increasingly lax expectations of privacy, it may affect the legal protections afforded to all.
  3. The APA evidently released a report several months ago aimed at improving undergraduate psychology major instruction, to which apparently no one has paid any attention.
  4. The technology is improving enough that doctors are increasingly able to conduct virtual visits, but there’s a problem – not all of the doctors are on board.
  5. Textbook rental programs are becoming increasingly common, so common in fact that major bookstores like Barnes and Noble are entering the textbook rental market.  Paradigm shift that will crack the market or only a short step toward a market with only online texts?
  6. Current American high school and college students have five times as many mental health issued as their 1938 counterparts as indicated by extreme scores on the MMPI.  Two areas were even worse: a 700% increase in hypomania (a combination of anxiety and unrealistic optimism) and a 600% increase in depression.
  7. The US Navy is planning to implement real-time brain scanning devices in order to diagnose brain trauma and various other neural problems to soldiers in the field.  Next stop: employees!
  8. Soon, you’ll be able to upload any type of document to Google Docs as long as it’s under 250MB.
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