Popular Lectures for the iPad

Starting this month, Popular Mechanics readers will find a unique offer in the kiosk for the iPad version of the magazine — the Popular Lectures project. Here they can download videos of the most interesting lectures from this series of talks given by Russian scholars and specialists on various fields of science. A series of the best lectures by psychologist Sergei Mats is already available for download now. The lectures, published here for the first time, include the following subjects:

“Why do we need consciousness?” What is awareness and what advantages does it offer? Which part of the psyche produces consciousness? Are we really conscious of everything that we seem to comprehend, and what degree of certainty can we ascribe to our awareness? Does consciousness have an inner structure, and if so, can we measure it? Is consciousness the same in everyone? What exactly is “expanded consciousness”?

“What drives human behavior?” Are we really in control of the situation just because we think we are? If we really do control our own behaviors, how do simultaneously gain experience that enables us to change our behaviors? What prevents us from reaching our goals and achieving the results we seek? How does hypnosis work? Will a hypnotized subject really carry out anything they are told to do? Is it possible to subtly force another person to do whatever you want?

“How does our psychological defense mechanism work?” How does our psyche protect us from daily problems and is it effective? Who teaches us and under which circumstances do we learn to cope with life’s challenges? Do some people have a stronger psyche that makes life easier for them? Conscious vs. unconscious and cooperation vs. competition. Why do some people look for the “meaning of life” and is it really possible to find?

“What is a person’s psychological gender?” When did gender originate and what is it for? Why can some creatures in nature change their gender but humans cannot? What does the word “gender” actually mean, and is there a difference between a person’s “sex” and their “gender”? Which factors determine psychological gender and when can it be considered fully formed?

Popular Lectures is a project of Popular Mechanics magazine that offers talks on the most important and interesting developments in such scientific fields as astrophysics, biology, neurophysiology, psychology, physics and others.