Creeped Out By Clowns? Here’s The Science That Explains Why (Cool Weird Awesome 1119)

A grade school custodian in New Hampshire has been showing up to the late shift in a creepy clown costume. So, first of all, why, and also, what is it about clowns that many people find so creepy?

By |2023-10-30T06:44:14-04:00October 30, 2023|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , |

Claire Weekes Came Up With Six Words To Help With Anxiety (Cool Weird Awesome 985)

Today in 1903, the birthday of Dr. Claire Weekes, who helped the world understand that sometimes the way to stop a spell of anxiety in its tracks… is, in a way, to stop trying to stop it. 

By |2023-12-26T12:15:01-05:00April 11, 2023|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , |

Dad Jokes Are Good For Kids, And Here’s The Science That Says So (Cool Weird Awesome 978)

Dad jokes may not be good jokes, but they may be good for us: a study from The British Psychological Society shows how telling a very simple, groan-inducing joke is a pretty complex process.

By |2023-03-24T07:55:17-04:00March 24, 2023|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , |

For Self-Help Robots, Looks Matter (Cool Weird Awesome 976)

The University of Cambridge did a study about robotic wellbeing coaches. And it turns out that if we want robots to help us help ourselves… they need to be cute. 

By |2023-03-22T07:47:42-04:00March 22, 2023|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , |

Science Once Figured Out How To Give Rats Gambling Problems – And How To Take Them Away (Cool Weird Awesome 964)

Today in 2016, researchers released a study that showed how to influence rats to make risky bets in a “rat casino.”

By |2023-03-07T10:55:47-05:00March 7, 2023|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , |

Piano Chords May Help Stop Chronic Nightmares (Cool Weird Awesome 884)

There's a new technique that could help people trying to fend off chronic nightmares - and it involves playing "neutral" piano chords at just the right times.

By |2022-11-09T09:05:44-05:00November 9, 2022|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , , |

Clever Hans, The Horse That “Solved” Math Problems (Cool Weird Awesome 670)

Back about 120 or so years ago, in Berlin, Germany, you might have encountered a strange sight: a man named Wilhelm Von Osten asking math questions of a horse named Clever Hans. Was the horse actually solving the problems, or was something else at work? 

By |2023-12-13T12:16:54-05:00December 13, 2021|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , |

Being Nice Really Can Make The World Around You Nicer, Science Has Shown It (Cool Weird Awesome 655)

A University of Oregon study on what's called the “perceiver-elicited similarity effect" finds that when you’re nice, that can lead to more niceness around you! Plus: today in 1910, what’s believed to be the first movie stunt took place. And it was quite a stunt. 

By |2021-11-12T07:46:29-05:00November 12, 2021|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , |

People Will Buy “Ugly” Veggies – If Grocers Call Them Ugly (Cool Weird Awesome 498)

Plus: if you're weary of remote meetings, a new web tool called Zoom Escaper may help you get a break.

By |2021-03-17T08:05:12-04:00March 17, 2021|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , |

What Do Video Game Playing Monkeys Have To Do With The Sunk Cost Fallacy? (Cool Weird Awesome 456)

The sunk-cost fallacy - when we keep at something even when it’s really not worth it anymore, just because we’ve already put so much time or effort in - is a part of human nature. But new research shows it's also a part of the nature of - this is the best part - video game playing monkeys. Plus: our first story on world records of 2021. Meet the world's largest spam musubi!

By |2024-01-11T06:07:29-05:00January 11, 2021|Categories: Cool Weird Awesome, Podcasts|Tags: , , , , |
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