Tag Archives: says

Short people may be short on brains, study says

The long and short of intelligence?

(Credit: TallWomen2013/YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET)

I am not one to cast aspersions — either up or down.

I had never thought that size meant anything, nor that height made any difference to people, other than altering their visual perspective.

Recently, though, an Oxford University study intimated that short people might be low on self-esteem. They tend, allegedly, not to have high opinions of themselves. Worse, there are many social problems that many short people feel the need to overcome. (See video below.)

Now along trots another British study that suggests the vertically challenged might be short on intellect. As Britain’s Sunday Times (behind a tall paywall) reports, short people may tend to have smaller IQs.

Researchers at Edinburgh University’s Institute of Genetics and Molecular Medicine analyzed the DNA of more than 6,800 people, none of whom was related to any other, to “estimate the genetic correlation between height and general intelligence.” The end goal of the study, the first of its kind, was to explore whether… [Read more]

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Crave: gorgeous gadgets and other crushworthy stuff. – CNET

Anquan Boldin says there’s no rift in 49ers’ locker room with Jim Harbaugh

If Jim Harbaugh’s act is getting old, it’s news to Anquan Boldin.

The veteran receiver signed a two-year extension on Monday with the San Francisco 49ers, a bit of good news that came after talk that Harbaugh was discussed in a trade with the Cleveland Browns and a subsequent report by the San Francisco Chronicle that Harbaugh’s “act has worn thin.”

[Be sure to check out Shutdown Corner's NFL free-agent rankings. Click here for the list of offensive players, and click here for the list of defensive and special teams players]

Boldin shot down the report from his perspective on a conference call with the Bay Area media.

“Honestly I just heard about it yesterday,” Boldin said, per the San Jose Mercury News. I really don’t watch SportsCenter, I don’t read sports news. At this time of the year, people grab at whatever. Football season is not here so they’ll do whatever they can to write, and a lot of it is farfetched, has nothing to do with football and the team.

“When I heard about [a report of locker-room discord with Harbaugh], I kind of laughed. I don’t think anybody in the locker room has an issue with Coach Harbaugh. The way our locker room is built, if anyone has a concern or wants to voice an opinion, they’re more than welcome to.”

Boldin has been around the league long enough (11 years) to have seen this type of thing before. He (and everyone else) knows that this has little to do directly with Harbaugh and his players. It’s between the front office and Harbaugh, and the two sides are believed to have butted heads on a number of issues the past few seasons.

With an unresolved contract situation and a headstrong head coach, you can bet where this story was floated from — the 49ers’ higher-ups. Boldin appeared to hint at that, without explicitly saying it.

“There [have] been times we’ve voiced our concerns as players, and Coach Harbaugh has taken into consideration how we felt,” Boldin said. “I don’t think there’s any rift between players and coaches, particularly coach Harbaugh. He has good rapport with all the guys I know of.

“There’s no gripes in the locker room when it comes to Coach Harbaugh. He wants to win and everybody in the locker room wants to do the same. We’re usually on same page and if not, we have it where we can talk to him and he can talk to us.”

If there is strife involving Harbaugh, it’s likely it’s not happening as much with his locker room as it is with the people who have the bigger offices.

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Eric Edholm is a writer for Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at edholm@yahoo-inc.com or follow him on Twitter!

Shutdown Corner – NFL – Yahoo Sports

Report says Jim Harbaugh’s ‘act has worn thin’ in 49ers locker room, but who cares?

After the 49ers issues with Jim Harbaugh became common knowledge when it was reported that San Francisco and Cleveland discussed a trade for the coach, one of the themes has been that Harbaugh is difficult to deal with.

He and GM Trent Baalke don’t always get along. He wants to be paid like a top coach and isn’t happy San Francisco won’t do that for him. And now Ann Killion of the San Francisco Chronicle writes that some 49ers players are sick of Harbaugh too.

“One source with inside knowledge of the team says that Harbaugh’s act has worn thin in the locker room, particularly among some key ‘face of the 49ers’ type players,” Killion wrote.

High-strung football coach rubs people the wrong way … stop the presses.

This has been a theme since the beginning of football. It’s not a big surprise. It might be a problem for the 49ers only if they let it be (and they already are in the process of that). If they decide the comfort of the players and front office is more important than winning, Harbaugh will eventually move on. Plenty of coaches get along with players. Norv Turner would fit that role marvelously.

But first, let’s consider a few things. San Francisco was a nightmare before Harbaugh arrived. Harbaugh came in and the 49ers instantly became one of the best teams in the NFL. Harbaugh is 36-11-1 the last three years and has gone to the NFC title game each season, with one Super Bowl appearance. He has put together that record, which is phenomenal in the parity-driven NFL, changing quarterbacks about halfway through. Any list of best NFL coaches has Harbaugh very high on it, or it’s worthless. He has been tremendous. The 49ers hit a grand slam when they hired him.

Again, there’s a lot of coaches out there who would be much nicer to deal with. Folks who probably wouldn’t care about a contract renegotiation like Harbaugh does. Guys who would be more polite in press conference and not create any waves. Would they win like Harbaugh? Of course not. San Francisco would take a significant dip without Harbaugh. But hey, you wouldn’t have to worry about a guy who is perceived as being difficult to work with. And that’s what’s important, right?

The 49ers have created a mess by not giving Harbaugh the extension he wants. That is the root of this problem, not Harbaugh being high strung. A lot of successful coaches (Sean Payton? Bill Belichick?) are high strung and not always easy to deal with. That’s part of the reason they’re successful. And their organizations keep them happy, which is smart. That’s just understanding their value. The 49ers are strangely not giving Harbaugh the lucrative extension he deserves, all because they won’t pay him as a Super Bowl-winning coach before he wins a Super Bowl. That’s just dumb.

What do the 49ers value? Winning, you’d think. Harbaugh has done a tremendous job restoring the 49ers as a top franchise in the NFL. Or is it more important to have a nice-guy head coach who gets along with everyone?

Well, there’s plenty of the latter out there. The 49ers might have the chance to hire one soon. It would be interesting to see how that would work out for them.

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Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at shutdowncorner@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

Shutdown Corner – NFL – Yahoo Sports

Surprise! Apple’s Tim Cook is both scary and caring, says new book

The power of silence?

(Credit: CNET)

So much time, effort, and emotion are expended on analyzing everything at Apple that it’s a wonder surprises still manage to emerge.

But on hearing that a new book called “Haunted Empire: Apple After Steve Jobs” was to emerge, some felt a tinge of excitement.

Written by former Wall Street Journal reporter Yukari Iwatani Kane, it promised (at least in some imaginations) to reveal secrets of Cupertino life.

An excerpt from the book was published Friday in the Journal and the revelations are few.

If you’d imagined that Apple CEO Tim Cook didn’t have quite the same style as Steve Jobs, this excerpt confirms it. He is described as not having “the quasi-religious authority that Jobs had radiated.”

He is also described as “arguably a better manager than Jobs.”

There are many of the already received wisdoms about Cook being more practical, more pragmatic, more orderly, more disciplined, and more modest.

Thankfully, he is still described as being scary. “He could strike terror in the hearts of his subordinates,” says the book. That’s a relief. It would be awful if Apple had suddenly turned into a holiday camp for the indolent.

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Paula Deen, continuing comeback effort, says she’s ‘back in the saddle’

Paula Deen continued maneuvering for a comeback Sunday, turning a beachside cooking demonstration into a public apology for the racist comments that decimated her career last year.
FOX News

Kids play with gadgets more than toys, study says


(Credit: iPhoneulink/YouTube screenshot by Chris Matyszczyk/CNET)

Why bother twisting real, plastic arms when you can play twisting games on an iPhone?

What’s the point of unpacking a board game when you can alleviate boredom instantly on an iPad?

Kids, you see, don’t need the hassle. They just want instant gratification. Yes, they’re little adults.

A study performed by child-education specialists the Michael Cohen Group, suggests that touch screens have overtaken all other forms of playful delight for kids.

The research, which examined the world of Digital Kids, shows that more than 60 percent of parents say their kids aged 12 and under play on touch screens “often.” And 38 percent apparently play “very often.”

Could it be that at least 15 percent don’t talk to their parents at all?

These figures put the gadgets ahead of mainstay toys such as dolls, action figures, puzzles, and board games. Even construction and blocks — that would mean Lego and the like — are far behind.

Welcome to the new world of play.

Michael Cohen, who led the research, … [Read more]

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Crave: gorgeous gadgets and other crushworthy stuff. – CNET

NFL Draft: Teddy Bridgewater says he’s the top QB, and that’s probably true

INDIANAPOLIS – When you project draft classes more than a year in advance, it becomes boring to repeat the same facts.

Teddy Bridgewater was the quarterback jewel of the 2014 draft class for so long, it wasn’t interesting enough to continuously discuss his superiority. We moved on to something else. Johnny Manziel is obviously interesting and soared up mock drafts. Blake Bortles went from relative anonymity to everyone projecting him as a possibility for the top pick in the blink of an eye.

When Bridgewater met with the media at the combine, at the same podium Manziel stood at a day earlier, the group of reporters listening to him was about half the size of the crew that hung on Johnny Football’s every word, and maybe smaller.

Bridgewater said he doesn’t really pay any attention to the amount of attention he’s getting. No matter who the media is focusing on, the forgotten man of the class feels he is the top prospect at his position.

“I feel that I’m the best quarterback in this draft,” Bridgewater said. “I’m not just going to sit up here and say it. There’s obviously actions that have to back up these words, and I’m just confident in myself and my capability to be able to play this position.”

He’s probably right.

The same reasons he was so highly thought of last offseason, when he was projected as the clear top quarterback prospect, still exist. He’s adept at working from the pocket, athletic enough to move around and buy time when needed. He can make all the throws. He was extremely productive in college, although not against the best competition.

Manziel is a wild card because of his size and questions about his pocket ability. Bortles is big and skilled but raw. When the Texans think about the risk and reward of investing the No. 1 overall pick into a player, they’ll probably figure out that Bridgewater has the same upside as the other quarterbacks with far fewer question marks.

“This past season, I was able to complete 71 percent of my passes,” Bridgewater said when asked about his strengths. “My third-down passing completion percentage was pretty much off the charts, my pocket presence, I’m a competitor. Each day I go out there and I’m eager to learn, remain a student of the game, and I think that right there just separates me.”

Bridgewater also talked about how much responsibility he had in Louisville’s offense, having to slide protection and identify fronts and make checks, things he’ll be asked to do in a pro offense. That’s another edge.

One question that had been growing about him was his size. He weighed just 205 pounds last season at Louisville, but he explained that. His sophomore year, he had a procedure done in which his jaw was broken to fix an overbite. He was 222 pounds, then lost almost 20 pounds because he couldn’t eat solid food for two months. He had trouble putting that weight back on, but he has gained nine pounds already this offseason and is up to 214.

“I just feel that to play this position you have to have durability, and I just want to prove that I can put on that weight and I am one of those guys who can last a full NFL season,” Bridgewater said.

If Houston passes on Bridgewater he won’t last long. Oakland and Jacksonville have met with him at the combine, he said. It would be a massive surprise if the Jaguars passed on Bridgewater with the third pick.

Whoever selects Bridgewater, that team will be getting a potential franchise quarterback.

“Each day, I’m trying to get better,” Bridgewater said. “I’m trying to outwork my opponent, outsmart my opponent and just try to be the best quarterback that I can be.”

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Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at shutdowncorner@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

Shutdown Corner – NFL – Yahoo Sports

Summons says Ravens running back Ray Rice knocked his fiancée unconscious

Ray Rice’s attorney previously the Baltimore Ravens running back had a “minor physical confrontation” with his fiancée in Atlantic City.

Hate to see what he thinks is a major confrontation.

Rice and Janay Palmer, his future bride, were allegedly involved in a physical altercation at the Revel Casino around 2:50 a.m. on Saturday. Each person was arrested and eventually released because of the confrontation.

Mike Hellgren of WJZ in Baltimore obtained a copy of the summons, and it alleges Rice committed assault on Palmer by striking her with his hand and “rendering her unconscious.” On Wednesday, TMZ Sports showed footage of Rice allegedly dragging his unconscious fiancée out an elevator at the hotel.

Ray’s attorney Michael Diamondstein told TMZ Sports he had not seen the video, but said, “Neither Ray nor myself will try this case in the media.”

Here is what Diamondstein told TMZ Sports:

“However, the video that’s being posted by TMZ Sports is not the complete event, but is merely the end result of what transpired … We’ll assure the public that when this matter is fully tried and completed, you’ll have a better understanding of what happened and we ask the public to reserve making any judgment until all of the facts come out.”

Now this minor confrontation is becoming a major problem for Rice and the Ravens.

It is not uncommon for NFL players to get into trouble, but allegedly knocking a woman unconscious creates a public relations nightmare. The alleged incident will not result in Baltimore releasing Rice – this league is all about talent – but it could hurt Rice’s current endorsement deals, plus his status as a role model for children. That is in addition to a potential legal penalty.

In addition, Rice could be disciplined by the NFL under its personal conduct policy. If an NFL player lands in legal trouble, the league could suspend that player regardless of the legal outcome.

There might be more to this story, but so far, Rice’s alleged incident has gone from bad to worse.

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Anwar S Richardson is a writer for Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at NFLAnwar@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

Shutdown Corner – NFL – Yahoo Sports

Belkin WeMo hack hole already patched smart home firm says

Belkin had already patched the security loophole which could allow hackers to remotely take control of users’ WeMo plugs and whatever was plugged into them, the company says, as long … Continue reading

NFL safety Kerry Rhodes, subject of rumors he is gay, says he wasn’t ‘blacklisted’

In 2013, a former associate of NFL safety Kerry Rhodes told some websites Rhodes was gay. The associate provided some photos to try to prove that was the case. Rhodes denied that he was gay.

Rhodes was a free agent, coming off a pretty good season in Arizona. He wasn’t signed by any NFL team. Many people wondered if the rumors had anything to do with it.

There hasn’t been any evidence of the two being correlated, but now that the league plans to welcome openly gay Michael Sam in this year’s draft, Rhodes telling ESPNNewYork.com that he does not think he was held out of the league because of the rumors is noteworthy.

“I don’t think I was blacklisted,” Rhodes told ESPNNewYork.com. “Especially with the NFL I don’t think they would do that … to me it was a product of me wanting to do other things and not finding the right opportunity.”

Rhodes said that money (he wasn’t accepting a deal he didn’t like) and other interests were the reasons he didn’t get a job. He spent a lot of time working with his production company last year.

Rhodes said he still wants to play, and he doesn’t turn 32 until August. Plenty of teams could use safety help, but it’s rare to see a player get a decent contract after a year off of the game, and Rhodes made it clear in the interview that he would need the right opportunity to play again.

But if he doesn’t play again he doesn’t think it will be because of those rumors. And he denied once again in the ESPNNewYork.com interview that he was gay.

“I emphatically said no once and that’s all I need to say and people who know me know that’s definitely not the case,” Rhodes said. “To me I’m definitely not and I can’t control what people think, so I move on.”

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Frank Schwab is the editor of Shutdown Corner on Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at shutdowncorner@yahoo.com or follow him on Twitter!

Shutdown Corner – NFL – Yahoo Sports