Tagged: autism

Crafted bots - Ariadne

Robert Hickson Aug 31, 2017

We are getting used to seeing sleek, industrial robots. (I’m looking at you Air NZ). And previously I’ve noted some animal-inspired machines. From these and other technological developments we can tend to expect the future to be shiny, hard-edged and efficient. A different approach is being explored with “Blossom” (and others), a DIY soft robot … Read More

The women who don’t know they’re autistic - Guest Work

Guest Work Jul 21, 2017

Fabienne Cazalis, École des Hautes Études en sciences sociales (EHESS) This article was co-written by Adeline Lacroix, who works with Fabienne Cazalis and was recently diagnosed with Asperger syndrome. A second year master’s student in psychology, she is working on a scientific literature review about the characteristics of high-functioning autistic women. Let’s call her Sophie. The description we’ll … Read More

An open letter to the people of Whakatane (and the rest of Aotearoa New Zealand)* - Infectious Thoughts

Siouxsie Wiles Jul 02, 2017

As a parent, I know what it’s like to worry about whether you are doing the right thing for your child. When my daughter was born, I couldn’t quite believe that after just a few days in hospital we’d be going home in sole charge of a small infant. Didn’t they realise we were unqualified?! Aside from giving her a … Read More

What causes autism? What we know, don’t know and suspect - Guest Work

Guest Work Feb 19, 2016

Andrew Whitehouse, University of Western Australia One of the great and enduring mysteries of autism is what causes the brain to develop so differently. The behavioural differences of many individuals with autism are so apparent that it seems intuitive that the causes would also be obvious. But research over the past 70 years has indicated this isn’t so. Read More

Gluten- and casein-free diet makes a meal of autism science - Guest Work

Guest Work Jan 28, 2016

Andrew Whitehouse, University of Western Australia From the moment a child is diagnosed with autism, their family enters the unknown. Conference halls are lined with salespeople, letterboxes are stuffed with pamphlets, and life is transformed into a whirlwind tour of a fantastical array of therapies and potions that are positioned as the “cure all” for their child’s difficulties. Read More

Helping autistic children to speak - Infrequently Asked Questions

Lynley Hargreaves Aug 27, 2014

A child chooses icons to ‘speak’ with Professor Jeff Sigafoos When Victoria University’s Professor Jeff Sigafoos offered autistic children the chance to communicate in three ways, it perhaps wasn’t surprising that the kids did best with the system they liked the most. It was also unsurprising, maybe, that most of them liked the computer-based system the best. But what … Read More

Building Pseudoscience on Pseudoscience - Molecular Matters

Michael Edmonds Sep 05, 2013

One of the things that has been observed at various times on sciblogs is that pseudoscientific beliefs often cluster – for example, those who believe in homeopathy may also be antivaxxers, or those who argue against climate change may also argue that the moon landing was faked. This can lead to rather appalling “mash ups” of different pseudoscientific beliefs/conspiracy theories, … Read More

Wakefield has not been vindicated and the courts do not think MMR causes autism - Diplomatic Immunity

Helen Petousis Harris Aug 07, 2013

Bit of a buzz on anti-vaccination websites about apparent court rulings in favour of MMR/autism cases. An example is  from a website called “why don’t you try this?” which cites as a source Whiteout Press (“if its blacked out, covered up of censored you can find it here”)  which in turn cites The … Read More

The Sad Side of Pseudoscience - Molecular Matters

Michael Edmonds Jun 30, 2013

Sometimes pseudoscience frustrates me, sometimes it makes me really angry, and sometimes it just makes me really sad. An article in the May – August edition of The New Zealand “Journal” of Natural Medicine fits under the sad category. It is copied  from an online posting called How I Gave My Son Autism, written by “Mountain Mama”. In this … Read More