Wonder on the Web

Issue 26: Links to amazing stuff /

Why the Way There Feels Longer than the Way Back

Social research often points out phenomena we’re unfamiliar with. But it’s awfully fun when researchers dive into a common experience we’ve never been able to explain. The “return trip effect” seems to come down to our unrealistic expectations.

Home, Sweet Home

How would you like to live inside a soccer ball? A giant sundial? Or a house you can carry on your back? How about a house shaped like a crocodile, airplane, or, um, toilet? Check out these and more in The Atlantic’s gallery of unusual homes from around the world.

Transformer Jellyfish

Jellyfish never cease to amaze us, from the “immortal jellyfish” we previously covered to the various kinds that regenerate themselves by regrowing limbs. Biologist Michael Abrams witnessed a new behavior: rather than growing back severed arms as expected, jellyfish rearranged their limbs to create the balance they need to carry on. Read more about the causes they’ve discovered behind this previously-unseen behavior.

The Awe Factor

What’s the purpose of awe in our collective existence? Recent research covered in The New York Times attempts to answer that question with this finding: experiencing awe makes individuals more altruistic, generous, and others-centered. “We found that awe helps bind us to others, motivating us to act in collaborative ways that enable strong groups and cohesive communities.” Wonderful.

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Also in this Issue

Issue 26 / July 9, 2015
  1. Editors’ Note

    Issue 26: The trust molecule, Luther’s forerunner, and the joy of watching a soccer great.

  2. The Shalom of Neurochemistry

    Oxytocin rewards us for human connection. /

  3. The Long Legacy of a Roasted Goose

    Proto-reformer John Hus was burned at the stake 600 years ago this week. We are all Hussites now. /

  4. The Messi-ness of the World

    The universe is losing a bit of its enchantment for me. But then there’s Barcelona’s forward. /

  5. Cast

    ‘The hobbyist / aims a drum / of fierce / aluminum.’ /

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