Friday, September 07, 2007

Mind Games

A story on the BBC appeared yesterday discussing the rise of the "brain training" computer game. I'm sure that everyone by now has seen those Nintendo DS adverts for that brain training game with Nicole Kidman in it that seems to be absolutely everywhere. They have been around for a while - although it seems as though only recently has it turned into a "fad". I particularly like the following sentence in the BBC article, which I think sums up this sentiment nicely:

"As if the gym was not tyranny enough, now there's another fitness routine
that's playing on the insecurities of the masses - the brain workout."
You would expect games companies to take whichever angle they can in order to sell more games, by using emotional blackmail perhaps by saying its for your (and your childrens...) wellbeing. But now Baroness Susan Greenfield, an eminant member of the Royal Society (if my memory serves me correctly), is fronting the MindFit family of mental games/exercises. I can't comment on the cognitive benefits of such software because I don't know enough about it, but I would have thought that if it were that genuinely good for your mental health, it would be freeware. But it's not (allthough of course I can see many reasons why it isn't).

Anyways, SharpBrains might be an interesting place to look for further information on "brain exercises" in general.

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