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Gift card sales near $100B in 2007 - 1.9.2008 [more ]
Sound Bytes - Random Sound Bytes
10% of software developers in Asia are employed in gaming industry  - 7.30.2007 [more]
Personal Growth - Psychology

Joke comprehension may decrease with age

By BETSY TAYLOR, Associated Press Writer July 11, 2007

It's no laughing matter: a new study suggests older adults have a harder time getting jokes as they age. The research indicates that because older adults may have greater difficulty with cognitive flexibility, abstract reasoning and short-term memory, they also have greater difficulty with tests of humor comprehension.

Researchers at Washington University tested about 40 healthy adults over age 65 and 40 undergraduate students with exercises in which they had to complete jokes and stories. Participants also had to choose the correct punch line for verbal jokes and select the funny ending to series of cartoon panels.

Findings were published earlier this month in the Journal of the International Neuropsychological Society.

The research conducted by graduate student Wingyun Mak and psychology professor Brian Carpenter showed that the younger adults did 6 percent better on the verbal jokes and 14 percent better on the comic portion than did older participants, Mak said.

Researchers used a verbal joke test developed in 1983 and used in other humor studies. Mak added a new element, though, by showing participants cartoons from the Ferd'nand comic strip, and asking them to choose between four panels to locate the funny ending. Three of the choices for each cartoon were the wrong ones, created by an artist for the study.

"This wasn't a study about what people find funny. It was a study about whether they get what's supposed to be funny," Carpenter said.

"There are basic cognitive mechanisms to understanding what's going on in a joke. Older adults, because they may have deficits in some of those cognitive areas, may have a harder time understanding what a joke is about."

News Cellar - Startup Profile

How Brave Should One Be To Name a Startup Goofy?

Svetlana Gladkova

What’s more, it is not simply Goofy, it’s actually squared Goofy! Honestly, I think even simply “Goofy” is bad enough but to name your startup Goofy squared is beyond my understanding.

But no matter how unbelievable it is, I have bumped into a startup named Goofy2 today. And even though the idea and performance don’t deserve a post here (or anywhere else, to tell you the truth), the name they’ve chosen definitely deserves to be mentioned at least once, especially since they have not managed to get any coverage from the blogosphere except for their peculiar promotion techniques on Twitter.


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52% of urban males do not get enough international content on their TV - 11.21.2007 [more]


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