Weekend Links: Bees Can Do Math, Oceans Are Changing Color, Why Clowns Are Scary and More

Welcome to Weekend Links, a collection of fascinating science stories from across the web, curated by your science-loving friends at the Mass General Research Institute.

If You’re Sick of ‘Mindfulness,’ Might I Recommend ‘Interoception’?

Edith Zimmerman writing for The Cut

What if it’s not your friend/husband/child who’s making you unhappy, what if it’s just your body? (“Just.”) Psychology professor Lisa Feldman Barrett, author of How Emotions Are Made, encourages anyone feeling dread to first ask themselves, “Could this have a purely physical cause?”

Bees Can Solve Math Problems That Would Stump the Average Toddler

Yasemin Saplakoglu writing for LiveScience

Bees don’t just buzz around and make honey; they also do math problems in their free time that would stump the average 4-year-old. Last year, a group of researchers in Australia reported that bees understand the concept of “zero.” Now, a new study by the same group suggests that the insects can also do basic addition and subtraction.

Smartphones Revolutionize Our Lives—But At What Cost?

New applications of the technology emerge seemingly daily: Your smartphone can now help you stay on top of your children’s dental hygiene by tracking how long they’re brushing their teeth with their Bluetooth-enabled toothbrushes. These benefits, however, seem to have come at a high cost to our mental and social lives.

Climate Change is Altering the Color of the Oceans

Chase Purdy writing for Quartz

The warming planet is changing the distribution of phytoplankton across the world’s oceans. Even though these microscopic creatures are too tiny to see with the naked eye, the overall effect will be apparent.

The History and Psychology of Clowns Being Scary

Linda Rodriguez McRobbie writing for Smithosonian

But most clowns aren’t trying to be odd. They’re trying to be silly and sweet, fun personified. So the question is, when did the clown, supposedly a jolly figure of innocuous, kid-friendly entertainment, become so weighed down by fear and sadness? When did clowns become so dark?

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