Your Brain on Tech | Summary and Q&A

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December 6, 2017
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Your Brain on Tech

TL;DR

Video games have the potential to improve spatial memory and brain function, while our empathy and attachment to technology may change the way we interact with machines and humans.

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Questions & Answers

Q: How has technology transformed our brains?

Technology has allowed us to store information externally, freeing up mental resources. We now rely on devices for tasks previously done by our brains, such as storing contacts and schedules.

Q: Can video games improve our brains?

Yes, studies have shown that playing certain video games can improve spatial memory, enhance brain structures like the hippocampus, and even improve test scores in related tasks. The study conducted at UC Irvine's Stark Lab found that playing 3D video games led to improved spatial memory.

Q: How does empathy play a role in our relationship with technology?

People can feel attached to and empathize with machines and technology. This is evident in experiments where participants developed emotional connections and didn't want to harm or smash anthropomorphized robots.

Q: What are the potential effects of our attachment to technology on human interaction?

The attachment and empathy towards technology may affect human interaction, as some people may find it easier to confide in or relate to machines. This can impact how we communicate and build relationships with others.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • Technology has transformed our brains, allowing us to store information externally and freeing up mental resources for other tasks.

  • Video games have been shown to improve spatial memory and certain brain structures, such as the hippocampus.

  • A study conducted by UC Irvine's Stark Lab found that playing 3D video games can lead to improved spatial memory test scores.

  • The impact of technology on empathy is also significant, as humans can feel attached to and empathize with robots and other technology.

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