Subjects in the study were shown computer-generated faces, created with FaceGen software, that ranged along a spectrum from very male to very female. The findings challenge a longstanding tenet of neuroscience — that how the brain sees an object should not depend on where the object is located relative to the observer, says Arash Afraz, a postdoctoral associate at MIT's McGovern Institute for Brain Research and lead author of a new paper on the work. In the real world, the brain's inconsistency in assigning gender to faces isn't noticeable, because there are so many other clues: hair and clothing, for example. The researchers showed subjects a random series of faces, ranging along a spectrum of very male to very female, and asked them to classify the faces by gender.
Study participants were told to fix their gaze at the center of the screen, as faces were flashed elsewhere on the screen for 50 milliseconds each. Afraz believes this inconsistency in identifying genders is due to a sampling bias, which can also be seen in statistical tools such as polls. Facial characteristics can be indicative of personality traits and may be why some couples may look similar, says a University of Liverpool study. Think about the confused feelings that occur when you meet someone whose tone of voice doesn’t seem to quite fit with his or her gender. There are several human characteristics considered to be genetically predetermined and evolutionarily innate, such as immune system strength, physical adaptations and even sex differences.
Our brain is wired to identify gender based on facial cues and coloring, according to a new study published in the Journal of Vision.
Many deadly diseases that afflict humans were originally acquired through contact with animals.
Supercomputers have helped scientists find a surprising link between cross-shaped (or cruciform) pieces of DNA and human cancer, according to a study at The University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin).


Like top musicians, songbirds train from a young age to weed out errors and trim variability from their songs, ultimately becoming consistent and reliable performers.
A biomedical breakthrough published today in the journal Nature reveals never-before-seen details of the human body's cellular switchboard that regulates sensory and hormonal responses. I've often wondered what happens between the time an egg is fertilized and the time the ball of cells that it becomes nestles into the uterine lining.
Imagine you wanted to know how much energy it took to bike up a mountain, but couldn't finish the ride to the peak yourself. Seeing a face, the gender of which you don't already know, at the periphery of your visual field, implies this person appeared unexpectedly, and you don't know who it is.This all means the person could be male or female, friend of foe. He and two colleagues from Harvard, Patrick Cavanagh and Maryam Vaziri Pashkam, described their findings in the Nov. But when people view computer-generated faces, stripped of all other gender-identifying features, a pattern of biases, based on location of the face, emerges.
For the more androgynous faces, subjects rated the same faces as male or female, depending on where they appeared. Assuming that the subjects sat about 22 inches from the monitor, the faces appeared to be about three-quarters of an inch tall. That is, some people judged androgynous faces as female every time they appeared in the upper right corner, while others judged faces in that same location as male. For example, if you surveyed 1,000 Bostonians, asking if they were Democrats or Republicans, you would probably get a fairly accurate representation of these percentages in the city as a whole, because the sample size is so large. In the visual cortex, where images are processed, cells are grouped by which part of the visual scene they analyze.


The answer, according to an article in the Journal of Vision, may lie in our interpretation of facial expressions. Now, females almost never require split-second action, whereas a male might very well require it. Subjects also showed biases when judging the age of faces, but the pattern for age bias was independent from the pattern for gender bias in each individual. However, if you took a much smaller sample, perhaps five people who live across the street from you, you might get 100 percent Democrats, or 100 percent Republicans. Within each of those groups, there is probably a relatively small number of neurons devoted to interpreting gender of faces. He could be from the other tribe, out to get you.One would expect an advantage in erring on the side of male and foe, until you have time to recognize the person, or their intentions. The smaller the image, the fewer cells are activated, so cells that respond to female faces may dominate. That split-second may have been the difference of life and death, millions of times in history.



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