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How Trump Grades Himself Thus Far: A+, A, C+

President also explains why he tweets

(Newser) - On Monday night, President Trump hyped his upcoming Fox & Friends interview, and Tuesday morning he delivered—his first self-administered report card. In his sit-down with the Fox crew , which Politico notes was taped Monday afternoon, Trump awarded himself an A for achievement and an A-plus for effort so far,... More »

'Ancient' Signal Dictates Where Mom Holds Baby

'Positional bias' is common among humans and wild animals

(Newser) - It's long been observed that mothers tend to cradle their infants on their left side, and this has long been at least informally attributed to handedness (so that right-handed mothers have the right hand free). Now researchers report in the journal Nature Ecology & Evolution that "positional bias"... More »

Sarcasm Makes You More Creative

No matter whether you are the deliverer or the recipient, study says

(Newser) - A study has found that sarcasm—which has gotten a bad rap—can actually boost creativity and cognitive functioning in both the user and receiver, Scientific American reports. Researchers assigned volunteers to take part in simulated dialogues that were either sarcastic, sincere, or neutral, then gave them tasks to test... More »

What Chimps Say When They Talk to Each Other

There's a special kind of fruit that makes them all chatty

(Newser) - Chimps chat, just like we do—and like many of us, they spend a lot of time gabbing about what they want to eat and where they're going to get their next meal, Discovery reports. For a study published in Animal Behaviour , scientists camped out in the Ivory Coast'... More »

Messages Sent From Brain to Brain Over 5K Miles

First-of-its kind experiment relays 'hola' and 'ciao' from India to France

(Newser) - A team of neuroscientists tapped into brain-wave-reading gear, binary code, and the Internet to transmit thoughts from a subject in India to three human "receivers" in France—about 5,000 miles away, reports Popular Science . The four participants, ages 28-50, were hooked up to equipment that looked like it... More »

Experiencing the Least-Connected Country on Earth

Eritrea still hasn't reported Gadhafi's death: activist

(Newser) - Eritrea, the United Nations says, is the planet's least-connected country. Less than 1% of its people have landlines; just 5.6% have cell phones. As for the Internet, less than 1% use it, and connections are almost all dial-up. "Even after waiting half an hour, you might not... More »

Homeland Security Spends $430M on Radios...

...but nobody knows how to use them

(Newser) - The good news is that the Department of Homeland Security has invested $430 million into making sure federal agencies can communicate with each other in emergencies by using special radios tuned to a secure common channel. The bad news, according to a report by the department's inspector general picked... More »

'I Love You' the New 'See Ya'

Constant communication has cheapened love: Jim Sollisch

(Newser) - Jim Sollisch's kids tell him they love him—a lot. But they also tell pretty much everyone else the same thing: friends, acquaintances, even people they can barely stand. "To them, 'Love ya' [is] the new 'See ya,'" Sollisch writes in the Wall Street ... More »

Social Media Makes Girls 'Seem More Aggressive'

Twitter, Facebook changing how we speak, expert says

(Newser) - Rapid-fire Twitter and Facebook communication is making young women more "to the point" in ways that can seem aggressive, an expert tells the Daily Mail . "It’s not intentional," says Oxford University language professor Deborah Cameron. "Curtness tends to be short, sharp and to the point.... More »

Good-Bye, Phone Call: Texts Rule Teen Communication

Text messages rising as phone calls fall

(Newser) - So much for the olden days of talking on the phone for hours: Texting is now the "dominant daily mode of communication" for teens, according to the results of a recent Pew Research Center survey. The median number of texts per day is now 60 for teen users, up... More »

Rejoice, Introverts: This Is Your Age

Technology makes it easy to disengage: Philip Bump

(Newser) - Philip Bump has a happy message for his fellow introverts in the Atlantic : Technology has made this a "Golden Age" for you. Sure, email, texts, social networks, etc., might seemingly make it impossible to disengage, but it actually "has become easier than ever to carve out time for... More »

Cell Phones Can Be Saviors for World's Poor: UN

Report shows gadgets can lead to better livelihoods

(Newser) - For the financially comfortable, cell phones may make life a little easier—but for those in less-developed countries, the gadgets can be the difference between a life of poverty one of relative comfort, a UN report finds. “Mobiles have spawned a wealth of micro-enterprises, offering work to people with... More »

Skype Partners With Facebook

You can now call 'friends' via Skype, video chat in groups

(Newser) - Skype just got a lot more social. The voice and video calling service has announced a new partnership with Facebook, reports CNN . The new service will allow you to see your Facebook "news feed" while you Skype, and give users the ability to call 'friends' who use "Facebook... More »

Let's Stamp Out Hyperlinks

They're a little too distracting

(Newser) - Tech writer Nicholas Carr is rethinking the usefulness (or at least the placement) of one of the Internet's classic tools: the hyperlink. They're too distracting, the author of the Shallows writes on his blog . You might start out reading about the Israeli ship mess but a few clicks later find... More »

Let's Rethink How We Teach English

Kids can't write, and it's getting worse

(Newser) - Take it from a first-year college instructor: The writing skills of young adults are a joke. "They have either forgotten the rules of writing, or they never learned them in the first place," writes Kara Miller of Babson College. And while the media focuses on the need for... More »

Cell Phones May Raise Risk of Tumors: WHO Study

Lead researcher says kids' use should be restricted

(Newser) - One of the most thorough reviews yet of the health risks of cell phones suggests that longtime users face a higher risk of brain tumors. The World Health Organization study is not definitive, but it bolsters the case that precautions make sense. The lead researcher tells the Telegraph she thinks... More »

Facebook Refuseniks Still Sorta Use It

They object in principle but end up using it by proxy

(Newser) - The Washington Post today profiles an increasingly rare breed: people in their 20s and 30s who don't use Facebook or other such sites. And though the “refuseniks” interviewed have different rationales—privacy, “morals and beliefs,” being “old-school in the personal touch way,” many share something... More »

Google Gives Select Few a Taste of Wave

New communication tool isn't 'ready for primetime' yet

(Newser) - A hundred thousand lucky beta testers today got their hands on the much-hyped “Google Wave,” a communication app that Google’s calling “what email would look like if it were designed today.” Wave operates a little like a cross between email, instant messaging, and collaborative wikis,... More »

Happy 40th, Internet (Maybe)

(Newser) - Forty years ago, two UCLA scientists exchanged data via computers, arguably making today the 40th anniversary of the birth of the Internet. "It would be more accurate to say some important seeds of the Internet sprouted with that data transfer," writes Stephen Shankland on CNET, but no matter.... More »

Woman Gets PhD in Texting

Philosophy thesis is first on text message communication

(Newser) - A British graduate student has earned a PhD in texting—an academic first, Discover magazine reports. Caroline Tagg’s doctorate, more specifically, is in the philosophy of texting communication. Tagg studied 11,000 texts from 235 people over four years. Among the findings: The average text is 17.5 words,... More »

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