The nearness of you

first_imgSuppose you’re opening a restaurant next week, and you need signs for the restrooms. Which would you choose — signs with images that represent men and women, or signs that simply say “Men” and “Women”? Now suppose the restaurant won’t open until next year — would your choice change?A Harvard researcher has answers.In research described earlier this year in the Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin, Elinor Amit, a College Fellow in psychology, along with two collaborators, Cheryl Wakslak and Yaacov Trope, showed that people increasingly prefer to communicate verbally (versus visually) with people who are distant (versus close) — socially, geographically, or temporally.“The reason is that language is generally a more abstract form of communication than pictures,” Amit said. “Because words are abstract, they preserve the gist and omit incidental details. For example, the word ‘car’ omits information about the color, the size, the number of doors, and so on. Therefore, words enable shared reality with social partners who exist in different times, remote locations, and are different from the self, and therefore may not have the same access to those incidental details, and thus for whom a concrete picture may not be relevant or understandable. For example, a pictorial message that was sent recently would be more comprehensible than a pictorial message from long ago. In contrast, verbal messages have a better chance of being understood across time periods.”Amit and colleagues performed eight experiments, including the restroom sign test.In one, researchers asked students to help them in designing a generic member profile page that would appear on a dating website, then measured how many pixels of screen area were devoted to images and text. Students who were told the site would launch in six months typically devoted more screen area to text versus images, Amit said, while students told the site would launch in a week designed profiles that gave equal space to both images and text.In another experiment, Amit and colleagues showed a pasta recipe to two groups. For one, each step was illustrated; the other group’s recipe used only text. Some participants were told the recipe was created by a Cambridge-based chef, while others were told the recipe was created by a chef in Los Angeles.Participants were then asked whether they would try the recipe at home. Among those who saw the illustrated recipe, the ones told of the local chef were more likely to answer yes, Amit said. Among those who saw the text recipe, there was no difference.That contrast in how people prefer to communicate with others is related to the way people think about objects and events near and far.“If you’re going to a conference in a year from now, you don’t need to check the number of the bus line that runs from the airport to the hotel, what exactly you will wear, or even what will appear on the third slide of your PowerPoint presentation — that’s too much information,” Amit said. “But if the conference is tomorrow, you do need to know that. This idea is consistent with a theory from social cognition, construal level theory, which suggests that people think more abstractly about distal versus proximal things.”Amit also suggested that the preference for different forms of communication for proximal and distal things mirrors the way language develops, indicating that those preferences are deeply ingrained in the brain.“If you think about the way language develops in children, even before they know how to talk, they can communicate visually,” she said. “One reason for that may be because, early in their life, they only need to communicate with people that are proximal to them — like parents, grandparents, and perhaps a nanny.”As a child’s social sphere expands, and as the need to communicate with more and more people grows, so too does the development of language.While such communication preferences may be unconscious, Amit said, it is possible for people to use various methods of communication as a tool to either shrink or enlarge distances. As an example, she pointed to the way someone might use video-chatting software like Skype to create the illusion of being closer to far-flung family and friends.“We often try to match the communication medium and the distance, and so use relatively more pictures to communicate with proximal than distal others, and relatively more text to communicate with distal than proximal others. But if we have a motivation to change that, we can use the medium in a manipulative way,” Amit said. “It can be a tool to change those distances.”last_img read more

Tigray crisis: Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed rejects peace talks

first_imgHundreds have died since the conflict in Ethiopia’s northern region erupted. Africa Live: Updates on this and other storiesWhy there are fears of civil war in EthiopiaFake news being shared over Ethiopia conflict

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Abiy Ahmed

a month agoLiverpool aiming for Carabao Cup success insists Lijnders

first_imgAbout the authorFreddie TaylorShare the loveHave your say Liverpool aiming for Carabao Cup success insists Lijndersby Freddie Taylora month agoSend to a friendShare the loveLiverpool are hoping to win the Carabao Cup, even if they do make changes to their team for the early rounds.The Reds will take the approach of many top Premier League sides by involving young and fringe players into the starting lineups for the competition.But assistant boss Pepijn Lijnders insists they are serious about winning the games and progressing deep into the Carabao Cup.He told the club’s website about their ambitions: “We want to compete in each competition, we want to attack each competition. We worked so hard to be in this situation where we can compete in each one. “For me, cup competitions are the soul of football because it represents a chance for smaller clubs to play against Premier League clubs and can give historic games for fans. That’s what we’re up against tomorrow. “The cup competitions are something special; when two local teams play against each other, that environment you get with the cup competitions. “We want to attack this cup, we want to attack tomorrow’s game, we will put a team in place that, for me, is a Premier League team. The players feel this responsibility as well: a highly-motivated team plays against us and the players feel this responsibility, so they really look forward to it, I really look forward to it. “It’s another opportunity to put our identity in place and show our passion. “We prepare for the game in the same way we prepared for Chelsea, with the same access, probably even more detail, but with the same hunger to win it.” last_img read more

Wisconsin Forward Vitto Brown Had A Funny Interaction Today With A Flight Attendant Who’s A Kentucky Fan

first_imgWisconsin Forward Vitto Brown talks about his interaction with a flight attendant.Wisconsin Forward Vitto BrownWisconsin’s men’s basketball program and its fans likely won’t ever forget the Badgers’ victory against Kentucky in this past season’s Final Four. The same can probably be said about the Wildcats and their fan base about their devastating loss. A flight attendant/Kentucky fan hasn’t forgotten about it, anyway. Today, Wisconsin guard Vitto Brown wore a Badgers’ shirt while flying. A flight attendant on his plane couldn’t stand the sight of it. Walked on the plane with a Badgers shirt.. Flight attendant asked if I played. I said yes. She said she bleeds blue. I said keep bleeding.— Vitto Brown (@SenseiSwat33) June 28, 2015 Lol she was a Kentucky grad, I could see the salt visibly spewing from her face as I sat down with sly grin. She said she don’t like me..— Vitto Brown (@SenseiSwat33) June 28, 2015 Brown and his teammates will be able to brag about that victory for the rest of their lives.last_img read more

Coach That John Calipari Confronted About Cheating Allegations May Be Cincinnati’s Mick Cronin

first_imgJohn Calipari wearing a Kentucky pullover while pointing with his left hand.ARLINGTON, TX – APRIL 04: Head coach John Calipari of the Kentucky Wildcats points while the Wildcats practice ahead of the 2014 NCAA Men’s Final Four at AT&T Stadium on April 4, 2014 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Ronald Martinez/Getty Images) kentucky basketball jones calipari kidd-gilchrist teagueTwitter/@tneelOn Tuesday night, we shared a clip from Gary Parrish’s radio show, in which he told a story about John Calipari accosting a fellow coach over recruiting allegations. Kentucky Sports Radio has look further into things, and as it turns out, this story might not be a new one. KSR’s Drew Franklin found an old story from Parrish in 2010, that is largely the same as the one he told this week. The coach in question? Cincinnati’s Mick Cronin.Parrish noted that Calipari will let people know when he has problems with others and he liked the fact that he is up front. He told a story about a confrontation Calipari had with Cincinnati Coach Mick Cronin after he heard Cronin had told some associates that he didnt understand how he could go to every game for a kid and then Calipari could come in at the last minute and take him (presumably Marquis Teague). Calipari heard the comment, went to Cronin and basically said “you have to go see all the kid’s games…I can sit back and decide which kid I want and come and get them.”While we’re not totally sure that Cronin was the example given again, it does seem like this is the same story. It’d probably be hard for Calipari to get away with using the same rant too many times. This is probably not something Cincinnati basketball fans want to be reminded of too often, though.last_img read more