Daily Orbit – The Dangers of Internet Addiction

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 14,094
    9-4-12: In this episode of the Daily Orbit, sixteen percent of all internet users are addicted, the electronic cigarette may not be as safe as you think, and the shape of your beer glass might actually change how much you drink.

    Emerald Robinson: Internet addiction? Oh yeah, it's a real thing. A new study put the light out on the e-cigarette and is the glass half-full or is it just curved. All these and more coming up on the Daily Orbit.

    Hi! I'm Emerald Robinson, welcome to the Daily Orbit. Do you have that friend that just sits on the computer all day surfing Facebook? We all do. A new study conducted at the University of Bonn in Germany suggests that internet addiction is not only very real, but it can be linked to genetics. Researchers surveyed a pool of men and women concerning their internet habits.

    Of those surveyed, nearly 16% said that internet consumes their daily thoughts, and believes that their well-being depends on them signing on. When compared to the healthy subjects, researchers found the addicts were more likely to carry a genetic variation similar to nicotine addicts. Women were even more likely to have this gene mutation. Researchers feel that female susceptibility to internet addiction is increased by social networking sites such as Facebook. So ladies you might just need to sign off.

    And if you were hoping to overcome that mutated gene with an e-cig, well you might just want to put out that electronic light too. A new study found that electronic cigarettes have an immediate effect on airway resistance. Participants used an e-cigarette for 10 minutes followed by a series of tests to measure lung function. Results showed that all subjects experienced increased airway resistance persisting for ten minutes after smoking. Researchers explained that the nicotine in the device still comes from tobacco and that more research is necessary to see if the harm is long term. Jeez! Internet, electronic cigs, can we not have any vices? Come on!

    A new study suggests that whether or not your glass is half-full might just depend on how the glass is shaped. The University of Bristol School of Experimental Psychology found that it took beer drinkers nearly half the time to empty a curved glass than it did to finish beer in a straight glass. The study was conducted by having subjects drink beer from either a straight or shaped glass while watching a nature documentary. Findings suggest this may be due to the difficulty in judging the halfway point of a curved glass. That is an interesting study, but then it is the School of Experimental Psychology.

    Spineless might soon be non-existent! The Zoological Society of London reports that 20% of the invertebrate species across the globe are facing possible extinction. Freshwater creatures top the at-risk list, followed by terrestrial invertebrates, and marine creatures without backbones. Researchers say this is troubling news as we depend on these spineless creatures for our very survival. Scientists attribute dwindling numbers to human pressure ranging from habitat disruption to increased temperatures. An expert at the Zoological Society of London warns that even though efforts to save the endangered invertebrates may be expensive, not doing so presents even more costly consequences.

    Thought the Bionic woman from back in the day was pretty cool? Well check this out. Doctors in Australia have implanted a bionic eye into a 54-year-old blind woman, Diane Ashworth. The implant stimulates the retina and then passes impulses back to the brain to create images. Ashworth says that she can now see different shapes. The next step according to doctors will be to implant the full device which will eventually result in black and white images. They help to give patients who are severely vision-impaired more freedom and mobility. Wow! What a hopeful story to end today's show.

    We'll see you right back here tomorrow for more science news on the Daily Orbit!