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Internet Peaks as America's Most Important Source of Information

The more than 70 percent of Americans who use the Internet now consider online technology to be their most important source of information, ranking the Internet higher as an information source than all other media including television and newspapers, according to findings in Year Three of the UCLA Internet Report. “Incredible as it may seem, for the vast majority of America that uses online technology, the Internet has surpassed all other major information sources in importance after only about eight years as a generally available communications tool,” said Jeffrey Cole, director of the UCLA Center for Communication Policy, a unit in the Anderson School of Management and affiliated with the university’s College of Letters and Science.

Nation’s brightest increasingly shun science

America’s top college graduates increasingly reject careers in science and engineering, researchers have found, raising concerns about America’s technological future. Faced with the prospect of low-paid apprenticeships and training lasting a decade or more ? and constricted job opportunities even after that ? more of the brightest young Americans are instead pursuing the quicker and surer payoffs offered by business and certain professions, according to the Washington study. “With the notable exception of biological sciences, many of the top U.S. students with potential to become scientists are turning toward other career paths,” said one of the study’s co-authors.

Portion size matters: Given too much, we eat it

Almost nobody can stop eating at just one normal serving if there’s extra food on their plate, Penn State researchers have shown, and this tendency coupled with the spread of megaportions may be contributing to the American obesity epidemic. In the first systematic, controlled study of the response to portion size in adults, the researchers found that the bigger the portion, the more the participants ate. On average, they ate 30 percent more from a five-cup portion of macaroni and cheese than from one half its size ? without reporting feeling any fuller after eating. Dr. Barbara Rolls, who holds the Guthrie Chair of Nutrition in Penn State’s College of Health and Human Development, led the study. She says, “Men and women, normal-weight and overweight individuals, restrained and unrestrained eaters, all responded to larger portion size by eating more.”

Calorie listings don’t encourage overeating, study says

You really don't want to knowLabeling foods “low-fat” is suspected of encouraging consumers to overeat. If that box of Ho-Ho’s claims to be low-fat, heck, why not down the full dozen? But a study from Penn State says the same is not true of the listing of caloric content. “Some studies have shown that people take larger portions of foods labeled ‘low fat’ ? using the label as a license to eat more. This study shows that energy density labels are unlikely to undermine the benefits of offering foods with fewer calories per ounce.”