The Synopsis

Since Tab Dump closed down a while back, a few of us were left looking for alternative curated-news service. Instead, we decided to make our own.

Founded by Ben Brooks and Bradley Chambers, The Synopsis is an attempt at curating a (week)daily list of the news and articles that you ought to be reading.

I'm currently a contributor (most of health, science, and tech-related articles) and am looking forward to seeing how it takes off. Check it out and let us know what you think.

Yosemite Wait-and-See

Joe Steel:

I’d rather read the reviews about Yosemite than install it. Particularly when I see that iCloud Drive deleted Nate Boateng’s entire photo library, and broke everything. Yosemite? More like YOLOsemite, amirite?!

I already tweeted about this, but I figured I ought to restate it on the blog as well: Yosemite kicked my mid-2010 MacBook Pro's ass. Understand that this is a computer that becomes so unusably bogged down when I open Lightroom; I've put it through many years of hard work, and it probably deserves to be retired the moment I can afford it. That being said, if your computer experiences any sketchiness already on Mavericks (or earlier) then I would recommend holding off on the Yosemite upgrade for a bit.

Study: the Paleo Diet for metabolic syndrome

The Palaeolithic-type diet resulted in lower systolic blood pressure (-9.1 mmHg; P = 0.015), diastolic blood pressure (-5.2 mmHg; P = 0.038), total cholesterol (-0.52 mmol/l; P = 0.037), triglycerides (-0.89 mmol/l; P = 0.001) and higher HDL-cholesterol (+0.15 mmol/l; P = 0.013), compared to reference. The number of characteristics of the metabolic syndrome decreased with 1.07 (P = 0.010) upon the Palaeolithic-type diet, compared to reference. Despite efforts to keep bodyweight stable, it decreased in the Palaeolithic group compared to reference (-1.32 kg; P = 0.012).

I still can't quite figure out why so many "experts" continue to claim that there is no scientific evidence supporting the paleo diet's positive health effects. Do they even read the journals they are subscribed to?

Relatedly: perhaps the most common criticism health "experts" (yes, I will always use "scare quotes" for that term because, given the state of our country's health, I refuse to believe that they know what they're talking about) have of the paleo diet's scientific literature is "the studies are just too small to make significant conclusions." Clearly! As long as the paleo community is considered a "fad diet" (by Wikipedia's editors, no less), researchers will never attain enough funding to perform large-scale studies.

Shure SE215-CL in-ear headphones

For longer than I can remember, I've been a loyal user of the Apple's EarPods, which were infinitely better than the company's previous generation of earbuds, but were also by all means nothing extraordinary. There was adequate levels of sonic bliss.

However, after doing some research (not nearly as much as I would normally do, for the record) I decided to bite the bullet and purchase something better. I settled on the Shure SE215-CL sound isolating earphones. This decision was based on price, looks, user reviews, and having detachable and replaceable cables.

They arrived today. I'll be honest: I might send them back.

This guy's hilarious review is on point:

Yes, the design is initially awkward. Yes, there was a moment when I felt like a lab-monkey, given triangle pegs to put in round holes. Yes, I initiated a contest in my family for who could figure it out the quickest. The current record is 2.75 minutes and one person still can't figure it out; it goes to show there's variation as far as personal adjustment to the design. I was right at 4 minutes the first time I put them in.

Really, you all should've seen me attempt to get these into and around my ear as recommended by the step-by-step instructions and pictures included in the packaging. I felt like a child and was thisclose to calling up Kristin and asking her to come help me. Now that I have them in my ears, I'm afraid to take them back out for fear of never getting them back in again.

Yes, that's my biggest complaint, but for a pair of headphones, getting the things into and out of your ear securely should not be so difficult, especially considering that they really to have to be securely in place for sonic bliss to actually take place.

And it does. Oh boy, do these things sound good.

I have a little while to return them, thanks to Amazon and a warranty I bought (cause I'm notorious for breaking nice things.) We'll see how they fare over the coming couple of weeks. In the meantime, feel free to let me know your suggestions on high quality (yet budget friendly) in-ear noise-cancelling headphones on Twitter or via email.

UPDATE: I took them out and put them back in pretty easily. Furthermore, these thing are @#$%ing sonic heaven. I swear I'm hearing things I've never heard before.

My Favorite Supplement Brand is Now Foods

I've added a new Health and Fitness section to my ongoing Recommended page, which has gone unupdated for quite sometime. My first recommendation isn't too granular; instead, I simply wanted to declare that Now Foods is my favorite brand of vitamins and supplements.

As I continue to fine-tune my own biohacking, look forward to specific recommendations on supplements and dosing schemes.

Dan Hawk's Response to 'God, Darwin and Biology'

My pal Dan Hawk wrote up a fantastic response to an article I linked to the other day called God, Darwin and My College Biology Class. Dan's a Christian, and doesn't as much disagree with the article as he doesn't understand why we're even talking about it:

Over the years I've seen other scientists point out potential logical conflicts between religion and evolutionary biology and/or geological evidence, but it hasn't given me pause in my faith.

Why is that?

Because I don't think that my religious beliefs explain how or why biology works any more than biology and science explain spirituality, emotion and consciousness.

The emphasis is mine, cause I think that sentence shouldn't be overlooked.