Switchtracking, as defined by author Sheila Heen, is when "someone gives you feedback, and your reaction to that feedback changes the subject." Hanna Barczyk for NPR hide caption

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Male treehoppers make their abdomens thrum like tuning forks to transmit very particular vibrating signals that travel down their legs and along leaf stems to other bugs — male and female. Courtesy of Robert Oelman hide caption

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Humpback whales and tanker in Stellwagen Bank National Marine Sanctuary in Massachusetts Bay. Green Fire Productions/Flickr hide caption

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Humpback whale and calf, off the Revillagigedo Islands, Mexico. Reinhard Dirscherl/Look-foto/Corbis hide caption

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Patients with certain kinds of brain damage can wind up with locked-in syndrome: they may be able to think just fine, but are unable to communicate their thoughts to others. A recently published case study shows that a non-invasive brain-computer interface can help. iStockphoto hide caption

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Katherine Streeter for NPR

Would time spent with Anton Chekov, famed for his subtle, flawed characters, make you a better judge of human nature? Hulton Archive/Getty Images hide caption

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