Along with predicting our future behaviors, brain scans can guess when we’re about to make a cognitive error, mis-processing a math problem because we’re thinking too hard. Like a dashboard widget watching your computer’s RAM, brain wave patterns can be used to detect when the brain is approaching its limits of processing power, according to new research.
Scores of animals exist in scientific laboratories for the purpose of serving as our proxies, their cortices mapped and their flu responses studied so scientists can figure out how humans work. But in many cases, there's little agreement between their functions and ours, and scientists need to figure out how to draw useful comparisons. To get a better handle on this, brain researchers had humans and monkeys watch "The Good, the Bad and the Ugly" inside an MRI machine.
For the first time, researchers have been able to hack into the process of learning in the brain, using induced brain patterns to create a learned behavior. It's not quite as advanced as an instant kung-fu download, and it's not as sleek as cognitive inception, but it's still an important finding that could lead to new teaching and rehabilitation techniques.
Pervasive, persistent optimism is one of those uniquely human traits/flaws — we tend to believe things are better than they really are, or that negative consequences won’t befall us, even if they befall others. It stands to reason that people would adjust their expectations when confronted with harsh reality, yet they don’t. Our brains are to blame, according to a new study — we’re wired to have a positive outlook.
The scent of a woman’s sadness — manifested in her tears — is a major turn-off for men, according to new research published today. It is the first study to suggest tears of emotion contain chemical signals that influence others’ behavior.
MRI scans are already being used to explain current behavior by mapping blood flow to certain brain regions. Now researchers at UCLA think they can be used to predict your future behavior even better than you can.
Caution has prevailed in a Brooklyn judge's ruling that refused to admit brain scan evidence in an employer-retaliation case. But advocates of using brain scans as high-tech lie detectors will get another shot in an upcoming federal case in Tennessee, Wired reports.
Scanning your brain while you watch horror movies might hold the key to making them even more frightening. The findings could reshape the way scary movies—perhaps all movies—are filmed
By Steven KotlerPosted 05.06.2010 at 12:48 pm 0 Comments
There’s no popcorn sold in this movie theater. The screen is tiny, the seating awkward. In fact, I’m lying on my back inside a narrow tube, with maybe two inches of wiggle room on all sides. But more unnerving than my accommodations is the serial-killer flick projected on the screen a few inches above my face. There’s a woman tied to a chair in a dingy basement, struggling as a masked man sneaks up from behind and slowly stabs her to death. The scene is terrifying, but, according to the people who put me in this tube, perhaps not terrifying enough.