Wescott’s Weekly Wrap-Up: Best of the Science Blogs.

David here again.  Another week, another round of links.  I hope this week’s links strike a relevant chord with everyday life – I’m talking about the differences between men and women, the agony of watching your favorite athlete choke in the big game, your pet, and your (ahem) strong attachment to diet soda.

First, the Global Change blog says apparently men are less likely to believe the scientific consensus about climate change than women are.  Of course, men are also less likely to use maps when they’re lost and think that baseball players on TV can hear you if you just shout loud enough.  (Or maybe that’s just me.)

And speaking of baseball, David Dobbs has a great piece from his new perch at Wired called “The Tight Collar: The New Science of Choking Under Pressure.” (Baseball is certainly included here, but the piece looks at a number of sports.) This is a long piece, as Dobbs is a long-form writer, but it’s well worth it if you’re a sports fan and you’re interested in psychology.

Are Pets the New Phone Chargers?  Another gem from Emily Anthes at Wonderland.  “Chinese student Yuan Gu has designed a humidifier that can draw its power from a cat.”  However, advisory board member Thea tells me that the design would not work as well with lazy cats like hers.

Does your brain know you’re drinking diet?  Apparently, yes.  And scicurious at Scientopia’s Neurotic Physiology has the brain scans to prove it.  Different parts of the brain show different levels of activity when you’re drinking regular soda and when you’re drinking diet.  So you don’t just taste the difference, you actually KNOW the difference.