Category Archives: Psychology

How to get work done at work

Just as TED talks are becoming the subject of well-deserved parody1, via Business Insider, I find an old one  (2010) with useful things to say. Here, Jason Fried suggests ways the office can become a more productive place. I’m not entirely convinced by all of his solutions, but he doesn’t claim they are solutions. By the way, my answer […]

Who’s Mad?

Martin In The Margins makes an important criticism of an otherwise mostly admirable and well-intentioned enterprise: As for that plea for a focus on ‘tolerance’, it would have helped if the rally organisers hadn’t included a performer who has expressed the most outrageously intolerant opinions. Appearing onstage in the National Mall was Yusuf Islam, the […]

Trouble At T’ Degree Mill

Another “shocking state of our universities today” story has appeared on the BBC news Website. A report from the Quality Assurance Agency says the degree classification system is broken. I smiled when I read this bit: The reports from the QAA raise some worries about the effectiveness of the external examiner system, in which examiners […]

Transports Of Detroit

This video not only contains a collection of excellent car-buying advice (which is almost as useful in the UK as in the USA), but a fine lesson in how to use presentation software to support a talk and in how to give a talk that’s no longer than it needs to be. Like this:Like Loading…

Jib Jab

I left The Observer on the shelf at the supermarket yesterday because it had another load of bollocks about MMR and autism on the front cover. Around the blogosphere, people who A) know some science and/or B) can be arsed to use Google show the newspaper’s science editor how to do his job: lizardoid Eustonian […]

World Of Wonga

I caught up with wongaBlog this morning. I enjoyed this post about Jonathan Edwards’ reflections on his conversion from Christianity to atheism. It’s all downhill from here, Jonathan. Believers might be wrong, but believing often makes for happier and more successful people; and I enjoyed this marvellous rant about anti speed camera campaigners. My apologies […]

Philosophers: 2 — Scientists: 0

Last Friday I found myself stuck in a room in a Cambridge college waiting to do a photo job so I took Ludwig Wittgenstein’s Philosophical Investigations down from a shelf and, as an intellectual dwarf perched on Hindsight the Giant, sneered at it. Certain things he said appear absurd in the light of certain experimental […]

Parisians Rude. Japanese Surrender.

It’s true, I tell you. Like this:Like Loading…

You Can Give It Away—Unless It’s By Louise Bagshawe

07:30hrs. I’m standing outside Brighton rail station with a suitcase, but I’m having nothing to do with trains today. After a quick discussion with the on-duty policeman and the man on the information desk I plant myself outside the gates. With a flip of the lid, bearing the A2 legend FREE BOOKS FREE CARDS and […]

Another Urban Myth Busted

Regular drivers of cars live in terror of flying on commercial airlines. People deadlock their front doors at night to keep out violent burglars and then die of smoke inhalation trying to open them in a house fire. Pensioners stay indoors for fear of assault by teenagers, keep their cash in boxes for fear of […]

Penis Size: A Scientific Study

Further to this, this. METHOD: To study the effect of penis width vs. length on female sexual satisfaction, 50 sexually active female undergraduate students were asked which felt better, i. e., was penis width or length more important for their sexual satisfaction. RESULTS: None reported they did not know, or that width and length were […]

Two More Apologies

In response to the previous PooterGeek post I received an email from a reader in Dulwich who wishes to make it clear that, despite buying property there, the Thatchers never actually took up residence in her neighbourhood. I’m sorry for suggesting otherwise. I’ve also toned down the language I used about Susan Greenfield back here […]

Yes, It’s Bloody Safe

It’s the sound of ball bearings grinding against fragments of broken glass on a wet pavement. It’s being wired straight into my jaw in full-frequency Dolby surround. Yes it hurts, but if I didn’t have a face full of lidocaine I’d be squealing like a pig in a combine harvester. There’s a man with his […]


Wikipedia will eventually triumph over all other existing encyclopedias. Does any edition of Britannica or Encarta have a “List of films ordered by the use of the word ‘fuck’“? Yesterday’s featured article was about philosopher and socialist Hilary Putnam, who is the Putnam in the “Quine-Putnam indispensability thesis” and definitely my kind of thinker. (By […]


Commenters here might have noticed that, this week, PooterGeek acquired a new CAPTCHA, that is a test to check that you are, er, “human” before your comment is accepted by the system. It’s to discourage spammers from clogging up this blog with links to their poker, porn, and Viagra sites. The PooterGeek CAPTCHA is basic: […]

Shrinking England

Via the Rubbish Man I came upon this. Despite the inherent wrongness of psychoanalysis, it’s rather a good read: “England’s repeated failure in penalty shoot-outs is not down to bad fortune, as the English media, with its empiricist presuppositions, insists. To lose once might be an accident, but to lose five times demands a psychoanalytic […]

Rage And Reason

These three blogs have all drawn attention to the dichotomy between the strange habits of angry Left-wingers online as reported by The Washington Post and the tone and content of the Euston Manifesto. There is something deliciously satisfying about seeing the wilfully stupid wax hysterical at the thought of a few people meeting in a […]

Like Yesterday

The Anonymous Economist draws my attention to this amazing story: James McGaugh is one of the world’s leading experts on how the human memory system works. But these days, he admits he’s stumped. McGaugh’s journey through an intellectual purgatory began six years ago when a woman now known only as AJ wrote him a letter […]

Laughter Lines

“Women chose funny men as relationship partners despite often rating them as less honest and intelligent,” the researchers said in the study published in the journal Evolution and Human Behaviour. In other news: Actor Tom Cruise has branded a story suggesting he is to split from pregnant fiancee Katie Holmes “100% false”. The denial came […]

Cross Over The Road, My Friend

You Don’t Want To Do That, a new BBC reality radio show, will follow a group of potential recruits to the Samaritans as they attempt to become full-time counsellors to the suicidal, the depressed, and the lonely. In this preview recording of the first episode, the hopefuls are thrown right into the deep end. They […]


Further to one of my shortest and most cited posts, if you don’t mind having Return of the Sith spoiled [hah!], the frankly strange Mike Doughty explains that, because Darth Vader is black, you must trust your feelings and know that he is your father. Mike was an amazingly prescient child: “I have this interesting […]

Men Better At IQ Tests Than Women

Two men dumb enough to think it makes them smarter: “Academics in the UK claim their research shows that men are more intelligent than women. A study to be published later this year in the British Journal of Psychology says that men are on average five points ahead on IQ tests. Paul Irwing and Professor […]


Over at Norm’s place Alan Johnson asks why the Labour Party has not been opposing terrorism more overtly. I can’t believe Alan hasn’t had the Bateman-esque experience of, say, commenting favourably on George Bush’s foreign policy in the company of Labour activists. If he hasn’t, thoughtful James Hamilton has some answers. Like this:Like Loading…

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