Scientists and criminals…
Two groups, when viewed separately, definitely lack cohesion.
But if pair together, regarding crime research?
[via PopSci]Brain Scan Predicts Whether Convicts Will Re-Offend: Welcome To The Sci-Fi Future ~by Dan Nosowitz
Researchers at the Mind Research Network in New Mexico–a non-profit, partially government-funded neuroscience facility–have discovered a way to predict whether released convicts will return to their own ways. Sort of.
The study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, found a correlation between activity in the anterior cingulate cortex of the brain and criminal activity. Researchers used fMRI machines on a population of 96 male convicts, then “followed” them for the next four years (we assume this means “checked their criminal records” and not “skulked after them while wearing balaclavas) to see whether they’d relapse. Many did, of course; the US is not a friendly place for an ex-convict, and there’s a high rate of relapse. But the correlation between the findings from the fMRI is what’s interesting here.
The anterior cingulate cortex is the section of the brain that circles around the corpus callosum, in the central-front part of the brain. It’s responsible, we think, for some involuntary functions like regulating heart rate and blood pressure, but there’s also some evidence that it has an impact on emotional response, motivation, and error detection, among other functions. In one study, increased activity in the anterior cingulate cortex was seen when study participants were shown particularly emotional video clips.
But in this study, men with lower activity in the anterior cingulate cortex were found to be significantly more likely to commit crimes after their release. It’s a significant correlation: men in the bottom half of anterior cingulate cortex activity were 2.6 times more likely to be arrested for violent crimes and 4.3 times more likely to be arrested for nonviolent crimes.
Especially for other Info Addicts like myself…
I mean, knowing that criminal gangs act like pacts of animals in the wild, and as a result their fight locations can be predicted with 99% certainty?
Honestly, who needs to know this?
[via DailyMail]How gang members behave like animals… and maths experts are now predicting where they will fight rivals with 99% accuracy ~By Amanda Williams
Maths experts have used geometric equations learned from wild animals to predict the location of fights between rival gangs with almost 99 per cent accuracy.
Jeffrey Brantingham, an anthropologist at UCLA, in California, who uses statistics to study crime, has employed a theory devised by Alfred Lotka, an American statistician, and Vito Volterra, an Italian mathematician, in the 1920s.
The pair observed that similarly sized rival groups of a species – from lions to hyenas – claim territories whose boundaries form a perpendicular line halfway between each group’s home, be it a den or a beehive.
Their findings – called the Lotka- Volterra equations – have been long used as a staple of ecological theory.
Brantingham applied it to 13 equally sized criminal gangs from the Boyle Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles’ East Side.
He and his team, aided by police, identified an area or ‘anchor point’ which functioned as the gang’s home base and used the Lotka- Volterra equation to draw borders between the turfs, Smithsonian.comreports.
Brantingham said that according to the equation, if the gangs are equal in ability, the boundary between them was equi-distant and perpendicular between their anchor points. He added: ‘It’s a nice, simple, geometric organization.’
According to the equations, researchers then predicted where the violence between the rivals gangs was most likely to take place. They predicted 58.8 per cent would occur less than a fifth of a mile from the borders, 87.5 per cent within two-fifths of a mile and 99.8 per cent within a mile.
Analysis of 563 gang-related shootings in the area between 1999 and 2002, showed researchers their predictions were almost exactly accurate, with the location of real-life shootings being 58.2 per cent, 83.1 per cent and 97.7 per cent, respectively.
Brantingham, who said his mapping method better reflects criminal activity than other police methods because it is not dictated to by geography, is continuing to test the territory maps.
So what am I saying?
Other than this information does me little, immediate benefit from the knowing…
Unless one counts the joys I will receive, when I recount my “knowledge” to others at a later date?
Oh, and believe you me…
I count it!
You should to.
There is joy in the simple knowing–Never doubt it!