Wine Study Shows Price Influences Perception

A rose by any other name might smell as sweet, but slap on a hefty price tag, and our opinion of it might go through the roof. At least that's the case with the taste of wine, say scientists from the California Institute of Technology and Stanford University.

Attractiveness Is Its Own Reward

Studies of the snap judgments we often make about people are shedding new light not only on social behavior, but also on drug abuse, gambling addiction, and other disorders in which our ability to make decisions is impaired, say scientists at the California Institute of Technology.

Certain Types of Brain Damage Can Improve Utilitarian Moral Judgments, Research Shows

Quick response! What's the best thing to do on a lifeboat with one too many people on board? Should one throw a mortally injured person overboard to ensure definite survival for everyone else, or refuse to act and ensure certain death for all individuals in the boat?

Watson Lecture: European Conquest

How did the West conquer the world? The secret, says California Institute of Technology economic historian Philip T. Hoffman: technological innovation.

Caltech and Princeton University Press Release Tenth Volume of the Einstein Papers

In the latter half of 1920, Albert Einstein faced a series of increasingly acrimonious public attacks against his recently confirmed theory of general relativity. He considered leaving Berlin, which would have deprived Germany of its most famous scientist. Colleagues, friends, and unknown admirers offered support, while Einstein worried about the care of his two sons and ex-wife in Switzerland, and his new family in Berlin.

Caltech Lecturer Receives Guggenheim Award

Judith Hall, a lecturer in creative writing at the California Institute of Technology, is the recipient of a 2006 Guggenheim Fellowship, the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation has announced. Hall joins 186 other scholars, scientists, and artists this year in receiving the prestigious honor, now in its 81st year. The Guggenheim Fellowships total $7,500,000 for 2006.

Watson Lecture: Puzzling Prices

Ever wonder why gas prices can vary by 15¢ --or more-- over a two-mile drive, or why an airline will change the cost of fares 500,000 times per day? Curious about what determines prices in the first place?

Caltech Philosopher Wins Lakatos Award

Those who think that philosophy is about a bunch of dead guys with names like Plato and Kant and Hume will be surprised to learn that the philosophy of science is active and vibrant these days. What's more, some of the work currently being done in the field is as relevant to our daily concerns as the question of whether a certain new cancer drug is being tested properly in clinical trials.

Revealing Book from Caltech Professor Chronicles Jewish Past

"[Cousin] Bobby's arrests . . . angered rather than surprised my relatives. In half a century of racketeering, he was the first member of the family to be arrested, let alone convicted. The first, that is, if you excluded Tilly's husband, sweet-talking Uncle Charlie, who did two years for setting fire to his failing upholstery business in order to collect the insurance . . ."

Experimental Economists Find Brain Regions That Govern Fear of the Economic Unknown

Do you have second thoughts when ordering a strange-sounding dish at an exotic restaurant? Afraid you'll get fricasseed eye of newt, or something even worse? If you do, it's because certain neurons in the brain are saying that the potential reward for the risk is unknown. These regions of the brain have now been pinpointed by experimental economists at the California Institute of Technology and the University of Iowa College of Medicine.

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